Top 10 Ways To Thank Your Call Center Team

Looking for new ways to thank your call center team? Read on!

shutterstock_434477890 (2)

It’s no secret that working in a call center is a thankless job. Employees have to deal with customers who are often mad at them before they even pick up the phone. No one likes to have a stranger yell at them, especially for something they had nothing to do with, but that’s exactly what call center employees have to deal with on a daily basis.

For this reason, it can be particularly difficult for employees to keep their cool and provide the excellent customer service you want to be associated with your company. That’s why it’s especially important to make sure you take the time and effort to let your call center employees know they are valued. Paying them fair wages is just the first step to motivating your employees to work their hardest for you and your customers.

THINK BEYOND THE MONEY

Regular paychecks will get your employee to work every day, but money alone is not enough to keep their spirits up throughout a long day of phone calls from frustrated customers, so although paying them well is vital, it’s just the first step.

People respond very well to verbal recognition. A simple “good job” or “you handled that really well” can boost employee morale for hours or even days, but eventually that fades, which is why you have to keep doing it.

PROVIDE CONTINUOUS POSITIVE FEEDBACK

This doesn’t mean you have to spend all your time thanking your employees, but you should be sure to recognize each employee’s achievements at least once per day, even if it’s just a pat on the back. Remember your recognition is vital, but its effects diminish with time. If you want consistent results from your call center team, you’re going to have to provide continuous feedback to let them know when they’re doing a good job and what areas you want them to improve on. Doing this consistently is the best way to keep your call center workers motivated every day they come in to work.

PROVIDE IMMEDIATE FEEDBACK

It’s not always possible to reward someone as soon as they do something, but taking advantage of the opportunities to do so is a powerful motivator for your employees. Getting recognized for something they did last week is better than never getting recognized for all the hard work they do, but it’s not nearly as effective as thanking them on the spot. The sooner you can follow up good actions with a reward, the more likely you’ll be to get those good actions again.

MAKE CLEAR, TANGIBLE GOALS

There’s nothing more frustrating than a supervisor who appears to be biased or inconsistent. When employees don’t know what they should be striving for or when they feel like their goals keep shifting, it ruins morale and performance will plummet. By defining clear goals for your team to achieve, you not only make it easy for your employees to know what you want, you also reduce the chances of any unconscious biases you may have.

MAKE THE GOALS PUBLIC

Posting these goals all around the office is the best way to make sure everyone is always aware of the results they’re expected to meet. They serve as a constant reminder both to them and to yourself of what’s expected, and any time an employee reaches a goal, they’ll have something tangible they can point to when backing up their claim.

Goals that are easy to define help keep employees motivated, not only when they achieve a goal, but as they get closer to reaching them. They’ll look forward to whatever reward you’ve promised them and that will keep them working hard until they’ve hit the goal and they start aiming for the next one.

RECRUIT THE HELP OF YOUR EMPLOYEES

You can’t be everywhere and see everything all the time, but your call center employees doubtless know which among them is consistently doing the best job. You can use their knowledge and experience to help you recognize the employees that are doing the best job. Give them opportunities to nominate each other for recognition. This will have the added benefit of boosting morale and teamwork among your employees as they recognize they can learn and get help from their coworkers.

CREATE GOALS FOR THE GROUP

You don’t have to limit your recognition to individual achievements. You can create goals you want the entire call center to achieve, and every time your team achieves one of these goals, you should celebrate as a group. Have a pizza party or bring in candy and/or soda to your next team meeting so they can all reap the benefits of what they achieved together.

GET EVERYONE INVOLVED

The call center manager or supervisor is in the ideal position to thank and reward call center employees for everything they do because that person is most likely to see all the hard work their employees are putting into their jobs every day, but a little recognition from someone higher up can go a long way. Let the district manager, or even the head of the company, know what a great job the call center team is doing and give them a chance to thank the team in person. It will make your call center employees feel like part of a bigger team – not just the call center team, but the team that is formed by all the employees of the entire company.

SHOW APPRECIATION FOR NO REASON

It’s important to recognize the achievements of your employees when they do well and to correct them when they err, but sometimes employees need a little something to keep them going, even if they haven’t done anything remarkable lately. Keep tokens of appreciation handy (candy, soda, gift cards, etc.) to hand out to employees, even if they look like they’re struggling. An employee going through a rough time for personal reasons might need a little extra motivation to keep them going through the work day and giving them just a small token of your appreciation could be the perfect way to do that.

DON’T REWARD THE SALES ALONE

Sales can be, but are not necessarily, an indication of good service. By all means, recognize the employee who hits all the highest sales numbers, but don’t forget to show your appreciation for the employee providing the best service. It might be someone whose sales numbers are down because they take their time to make sure each customer is satisfied before moving on to the next thing.

There are any number of ways you can show your appreciation for your call center team. We’ve listed just a few here, but the options are limited only by your imagination. Feel free to think outside the box and come up with creative ways to let your call center team know their contribution does not go unnoticed.

HOW TO IMPROVE CUSTOMER SERVICE IN A CALL CENTER

Do you want to improve customer service in your call center?

shutterstock_262977611 (2)

Providing great customer service in a call center is vital for the success of your business, but it’s also challenging. The voices in your call center are the first voices your customers hear when they call your company and it’s true that the first impression is the most important. It is crucial that the first voice they hear be professional and well mannered. Chipper would be ideal, but it’s not necessary.

But your call center is made up of people and sometimes people make mistakes. We all have bad days and it can be particularly difficult to remain cordial, much less cheerful, when we’re stressed. Working in a call center is one of the most stressful jobs there is, but there are ways you can minimize the stress of your team and help them provide the best possible customer service.

SEGMENT CUSTOMERS SO THEY GO TO THE RIGHT DEPARTMENT

Rather than expecting all your call center employees to know everything about your business and your customers, it’s best to divide them up into groups. You can do this by customer or by area of your business if you operate in multiple industries. That way your call center employees don’t have to have all the answers for all your customers, they only need to know the ones that are relevant to their department.

There are a couple ways you could do this. You can assign a different phone number to each department and give your customers the phone number for their department. Or you can have your customers call one central line and use interactive voice response technology to have a computer direct them to the correct department.

KEEP YOUR CALL CENTER TEAM INFORMED

By segmenting your call center and your customers you reduce the amount of information each call center employee needs to know. This prevents them from becoming overwhelmed and allows them to stay on top of the changes they need to be aware of. As things get updated within your company and/or your customers, be sure to keep all the employees informed who might be affected. That means any time there’s a policy change in how to deal with a particular customer or issue, for example, or when a point of contact changes, let your call center workers know about it as soon as possible. Strong communication is the key to success in many things and it holds true for providing great customer service in a call center.

KEEP THINGS AS CONSISTENT AS POSSIBLE

Maintaining strong communication with your customer service team will also help achieve consistency so your customers get the same great experience every time they call. Be sure to communicate with your customer service team what you expect from them and react appropriately and consistently when they meet, exceed, or fall short of those expectations.

Stellar employees should not only be rewarded, they should be made examples for the rest of the customer service employees to follow. Let the whole team know when someone does a good job, both as a way to celebrate and as a way to set and publicize your expectations for the entire team. If someone handles a tough call particularly well, let the rest of the call center team listen in on the call so they’ll know how you want them to handle similar situations if they arise in the future.

LOOK FOR WAYS TO IMPROVE WORKFLOW

Bureaucracy is often maligned as a terrible invention that slows everything down, but there is a reason for it. It provides a record of past transactions and it holds people accountable for the things they said and did. That said, there are often a lot of useless steps employees need to take in order to get one simple thing done. Any time you can find a way to eliminate these steps and improve your employees’ workflow, you’ll make things easier for everyone, including your customer.

Communicating new information to your employees is key, but it’s even better if you can give them the tools to look up the information themselves. Whether this means providing them access to something on your server, setting up a folder with all the information they’ll need, or just sending out an email, they will be able to handle questions from customers much more quickly and efficiently if they can access the information they need on their own. Take a close look at your policies and practices and look for the steps that can be eliminated.

PROVIDE THE RIGHT EQUIPMENT

You wouldn’t send a soldier into battle with a pistol, so don’t give your call center employees old or subpar equipment and expect them to be able to provide great customer service. A lot of companies are so focused on their bottom line that forcing them to part with any money is like pulling teeth, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Spending money on quality equipment is a necessary business investment and you don’t want to skimp on it at the expense of the customer service in your call center.

Call center workers need quality computers and phones that can keep up with new technology so they can provide the best service to your customers. This might mean updating your software and training people to use it every few years. That can be time consuming and frustrating, but it’s well worth it if it improves the customer service in your call center.

Take headsets, for example. Make sure to provide your call center workers with headsets so they have both hands free to look things up on the computer while they’re talking to customers and make sure the headset will continue to work with emerging technology rather than becoming obsolete in a few years.

BE FLEXIBLE ABOUT HOW PEOPLE WORK

As technology continues to advance, it is constantly changing the way the world works, and that includes the office. Cubicles are still the standard for now, but many places have done away with them in favor of a more open office environment. Others have gone a step further by letting their employees work from home, which has been shown to lead to increased productivity and employee retention if done right.

There are many ways to improve customer service in a call center. Some of them require you to think outside the box and some might need some trial and error before you find what works best for your call center. At the heart of it all is your company’s individual culture, which will have the biggest impact on how your call center staff treat your customers.

Meet our call center agents!