Agent Experience

Should Your Most Talented CS Agents Be off the Phone?

It may be time to use your most talented service agents in a whole new way. Here are some trends to consider.

Source: FS Stock / shutterstock

You know the agent: the one who’s a star and embodies every value your brand holds dear. He or she processes a high volume of calls, always has a great attitude, handles the stress of the customer service role with ease, and can resolve even the most complex issue or irate customer gracefully. Over time, he or she becomes a cornerstone of your organization’s ability to deliver a winning customer experience. If you have a highly talented CS agent on your team who isn’t being fully utilized just serving customers, here are some ways he or she can be used to improve the overall performance of your team.

Turn Them into Trainers

When agents understand the ins and outs of what’s working in supporting your customers, give them opportunities to train their colleagues. For example, one customer service agent I worked with had a partial allocation as a trainer. She regularly worked to identify calls that were teaching opportunities, and then she facilitated weekly meetings to review these calls with team members. She also helped shape and deliver monthly, quarterly, and annual training for her team. Let your best employees actively model the behavior you hope to see in all your employees.

Include Them in Improving Processes

Customer service processes are constantly evolving, whether you’re developing new scripts or beta testing software to make agents more efficient. Consider creating a special projects role where these agents can spend some time contributing to the long-term changes that improve both the agent and customer experience.

Engage Them in Self-Service Experience Creation

Introducing self-service and other forms of automation can offer customers the fast, personalized experiences they want—without having to pick up the phone. One call center manager I worked with promoted a senior agent to work with the technical team on experience design. Her in-depth knowledge of the customer service needs that buyers faced helped create a self-service portal, live chat, and chatbot options that scaled the customer experience—without sacrificing the personal touch.

Encourage Them to Create FAQs and Articles

If content is part of your strategy, you need writers who understand both your brand’s position and what customers need. A customer service agent can be the perfect person to bridge those worlds and create content that’s accessible, on brand, and speaks directly to your audience. Whether these writers create a reference guide for colleagues or customer-facing content, consider leveraging top talent to expand your customer service content library.

There are creative ways to involve your best customer service reps in your CSR department operations. From training to content creation, leverage their experience and institutional knowledge in new and creative ways.