With unprecedented call volumes and fewer agents to handle them, support leaders face continuous pressure.

Moving agents to work-from-home operations have mitigated the situation in part, while also presenting a completely new set of challenges.

It’s now evident that the self-service support many brands offer isn’t as effective as it could be. In fact, only 1 out of 10 customers report solving their issues completely through self-service.

In Q2, ensuring business continuity will remain a top priority. With more and more agents working from home, support leaders will focus on providing them with better tools and training to improve operations. To lift some of the pressure of record-breaking contact volumes, improving self-service support quickly will also make it to the top of the list.

Ensuring business continuity – enabling agents at home

The past few weeks have been a real logistical challenge for many colleagues on the customer service side. With contact centers closing doors globally, moving hundreds of thousands of agents to work-from-home operations has proven effective in keeping agents online.

Yet, the role of agents continues to change. It’s becoming more complex. With online departments hard at work on improving the self-service channels and handling the more simple requests – agents are left to pick up the difficult ones. At an unprecedented scale.

But despite increased complexity, one thing hasn’t changed; Agents need to be at their best. At all times.

‘Agents at their best’, however, takes a twofold meaning – 1, Helping the customers in the most satisfactory matter, and 2, increasing efficiency to be able to handle the unprecedented contact volumes.

Striking the right balance is difficult, but remains a priority.

That’s why in Q2 and for foreseeable future, service leaders are focusing on upskilling the entire contact center. Arming agents with the right tools to reduce average handling time (AHT) as well as providing solid training and onboarding that quickly moves agents to experts.

 

Focusing on digital gets a new meaning

The past few weeks have revealed that creating self-service support that actually solves customers’ issues remains a challenge for many. 

While prioritizing digital is nothing new, the difference this quarter lies in the scale. Digital self-service will no longer be considered a side project.  It’s a key function of support that lifts part of the burden from assisted support. 

By moving customers’ from live assisted channels to self-service, avoidable calls to the contact center are deflected. Helping both customers & agents in times of peak customer support demand. 

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We’ve compiled a set of best online support practices to help you manage customer service demand in times of crisis.

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