With collaboration one of the key themes for last week’s National Customer Service Week, Nigel Shanahan, founder of Rant & Rave looks at ways to foster collaboration and drive engagement with employees working in the customer service sector.

Customer-facing employees are pivotal to the success of any business; they are responsible for keeping customers happy and loyal by providing a memorable experience which makes them feel valued by the organisation. Therefore regularly engaging with these members of staff, and keeping them satisfied and focused at work is very important for the management of a business. Below are some top tips for achieving employee engagement:

1. Gamify the experience

No one wants work to be a chore, which is why many contact centres are now exploring gamification to make the daily life of their staff more exciting and engaging. Gamification is an approach towards improving employee engagement that aligns individual behaviours and characteristics with those of the wider organisation. At its most basic level it involves making work tasks into games.

2. Share praise

Everyone likes a pat on the back sometimes to say job well done, but it’s even better when it comes from the people they’re serving – the customers themselves. Especially if they’ve been dealing with tricky calls all day! When capturing the Voice of the Customer, make sure that both positive and negative feedback is shared with the team, so they can see where their strengths lie and any areas they may need to improve upon.

Co-workers discussing plans over a desk with coffee

3. Know the difference

There’s nothing worse than feeling helpless, especially if there’s an angry customer on the phone and all an agent can do is log the issue and promise that it will be looked into. More often than not, the issue isn’t anything to do with your agents at all – perhaps your website information isn’t clear enough, or your engineers haven’t fixed an issue – yet it’s the agents that take the heat for it. Use technology that’s smart enough to analyse customer feedback and distinguish where the real problem lies, so that you can make tactical changes and keep your agents motivated.

4. Listen to your staff

Your team are on the frontline all day, every day and as the face and voice of your brand, will have a lot to say about how things can be improved. Capture their feedback, acknowledge them and use their comments to continually improve your contact centre.

5. Keep staff in the loop

One of the most common pet peeves amongst employees is feeling like they’re not being kept in the loop by head office and management. But it’s easy to keep your staff informed and engaged. Whether you’ve got a big announcement, an upcoming competition or need to let them know the details of a recent incident, the key is to keep them informed.

Read the full article on http://www.hrnews.co.uk