Interestingly, lack of appreciation and recognition is the number one reason that call center agents will resign, and in turn, high turnover is the leading cause of decreased customer satisfaction. That is why it is crucial to celebrate success and recognize call center agents when they are delivering outstanding customer service.
What does it mean to recognize an agent? Recognizing agents can take many forms. It can be as simple as praising an agent when they have handled customer problems or inquiries well, or it can be on a larger scale, such as hosting an event in honor of their great customer service.
Examples of Recognizing Agents for Outstanding Customer Service
An excellent example of celebrating success on a larger scale is SQM's longstanding Call Center Awards Ceremony which occurs on the final night of their annual CX Conference. This conference showcases the profound impact of recognizing agents for their performance on the agents themselves, their peers, and the organizations as a whole.
SQM's Annual Call Center Industry CX Conference & Awards Ceremony
Every year, SQM hosts an exceptional conference where award-winning call centers are honored and agents are recognized for their great customer service. This event acts as a platform to recognize and reward those call center agents and supervisors who consistently deliver exceptional customer experiences.
This year, we had one of our best conferences yet. When asked what their favorite part was, many attendees mentioned the Hawaiian-themed Boat Cruise. The sun was shining with a slight ocean breeze, and everyone was sitting on the boat's top deck listening to the live music. The appreciation and pleasure of being there were written clearly on everyone's faces; it was an amazing way to kick off the conference for all the outstanding agents and supervisors.
The next conference day was Appreciation Day, and SQM organized various events such as spa treatments, golfing at the world-class Floating Green golf course, and an E-bike ride. That evening everyone dressed up to attend the Gala dinner and Awards Ceremony.
During the Awards Ceremony, SQM recognizes award-winning call centers and frontline employee performances for 50+ award categories. SQM's awards and certification programs are the most credible and rewarding recognition programs in the call center industry because they are based on customers' experiences using call centers and the employees working in them.
This conference showcases the significance of acknowledging call center agents' and supervisors' hard work and dedication. The recognition received at events like the SQM conference holds immense value for call center agents and supervisors. For many, this ceremony is a highlight of their career. When their efforts are publicly recognized, it reinforces their sense of purpose and instills greater pride in their work.
What Are the Benefits of Agent Recognition?
Recognizing call center agents for delivering excellent customer service is one of the best ways to motivate them to continue doing so.
The Impact of Recognition and Appreciation
1. Boosting Morale and Motivation: When employees feel appreciated, their morale significantly increases. Recognizing agents' hard work and contributions conveys that their efforts are noticed and valued. This, in turn, fuels their motivation, leading to increased productivity and a greater commitment to going above and beyond.
2. Fostering a Positive Work Culture: A culture of recognition breeds positivity within the workplace. It also helps them experience a sense of belonging, which creates a supportive and collaborative work environment. Appreciation cultivates trust, respect, and open communication among team members.
3. Enhancing Job Satisfaction and Retention: Feeling appreciated directly correlates with job satisfaction. Agents who receive recognition for their hard work develop a deeper sense of fulfillment and purpose in their roles, creating a sense of personal and professional achievement. As a result, employees are more likely to stay committed to their organization, reducing turnover rates and retaining top talent.
4. Increasing Agent Engagement: Recognition is a powerful driver of employee engagement. When agents' work is recognized, they become emotionally invested in their work and the organization's success. They go beyond mere compliance and actively seek ways to improve processes, contribute innovative ideas, and provide exceptional customer service. This directly impacts Csat and business growth.
5. Strengthening Relationships and Teamwork: Appreciation strengthens relationships among employees and promotes a sense of camaraderie. When agents feel appreciated by their managers and supervisors, it fosters a supportive network within the workplace. This enhances collaboration, communication, and teamwork, leading to increased efficiency, creativity, and problem-solving capabilities.
6. Improving Mental Health and Well-being: Recognizing and appreciating agents' efforts creates a sense of validation and self-worth. This reduces stress, boosts self-confidence, and enhances job satisfaction. Recognition acts as a buffer against burnout and creates a positive work-life balance.
All in all, the power of recognition cannot be undermined. It results in a high Esat, lower turnover rate, and higher Csat and CX, a fundamental aspect of building a thriving and successful organization.
Recognizing and appreciating agents boosts morale, motivation, and job satisfaction. It fosters a positive work culture, enhances employee engagement, and strengthens teamwork. Moreover, appreciation improves mental health and overall well-being. Organizations prioritizing recognition create a supportive, engaged, and productive workforce, driving sustainable growth and success.
How to Recognize Agents for Great Customer Service?
SQM has identified the top 3 agent recognition tips for improving customer service based on their CX research. For the top 3 Agent recognition tips, SQM's world-class FCR-performing call centers recognize their Agents with frequent, descriptive, impactful, and personal feedback about their VoC survey results for great customer service, call resolution, and customer satisfaction performance.
1. Rewards Recognition Tip
Agents earn reward points based on VoC survey results or positive behaviors in their daily customer interactions. Based on the VoC survey results, our mySQM™ Customer Service QA software automatically awards Agent FCR, call resolution, and customer satisfaction performance reward points.
Agents are also rewarded with points for any positive behavior. Rewarding and recognizing these positive behaviors frequently is motivating and encourages repeated action. Agent points can be topped up using gamification and redeemed using SQM's debit card for rewards that matter most to employees.
mySQM™ FCR Insights software helps recognize Agents frequently, descriptively, impactful, and personally, making it a powerful tool for improving FCR, CX, employee retention, and lower operating costs.
2. Service Hero Recognition Tip
The Service Hero recognition program was introduced to SQM by Regence BlueCross BlueShield. Agents are recognized as Service Heroes for providing exemplary CX. Agents receive frequent, descriptive, impactful, and personal feedback about being a Service Hero. This program has been used for many years and has extended legacy capabilities, which can be a hallmark of an effective Agent recognition program.
The Service Hero recognition program chooses the CX stories that stand out and shares these with the organization's leaders. Quarterly, exemplary calls are highlighted by supervisors and managers who will then discuss rank and select 5 to 7 calls of the 20 or so that were studied. The senior executive team will then listen to these 5 to 7 calls and discuss their ranking and how to deliver world-class CX.
3. Customer Service and CX Certification Recognition Tip
SQM's World Class Agent Customer Service and CX Certification Program are designed to determine if agents are performing at the world-class call resolution and customer satisfaction performance level. This program is deemed the most credible and effective certification program in the call center industry because certification is based on VoC survey results.
The Customer Service and CX Certification Program provides the agents with frequent, descriptive, impactful, and personal feedback. It can do so because most agents have 4-10 monthly post-call surveys detailing how they handled their calls. Customer feedback is highly motivating, and they value being recognized for their FCR, call resolution, and Csat performance.