Today’s call center solutions have taken agents and heightened them to levels of personalized support that could not be obtained without the addition of technology. However, the technology and its features are only as powerful and capable as the people who are utilizing them. This means that managers must seek out and hire agents who are as tech-savvy as they are people-oriented.
Once a reactive position, customer service agents are now playing a hybrid role. They are cross-selling and up-selling after resolving a customer’s problem, which requires a more confident, outgoing personality as well as skills such as adaptability, a pleasant voice and an unmatched ability to listen. Additionally, service recovery requires employees who are resourceful enough to find answers to complex questions.
Increasingly, call center agents are being given titles such as brand ambassador, concierge or specialist. They are tasked with knowing everything about a company’s product portfolio – from features and benefits to discounts and defects – and they need to be able to find what they don’t know by quickly searching knowledge bases within your call center technology.
Perhaps one of the most sought-after skills for a contact center agent is the ability to multitask. From phone to online chat to e-mail, it is now the norm to expect an agent to handle multiple screens. They must quickly change hats, or simultaneously, they need to manage several interactions at once.
They also need to treat uniquely varying customers differently based on on-screen prompts. From reading and interpreting instructions to being comfortable working within the Web and computers, agents have to toggle among multiple screens while at the same time providing an explanation to the customer with a calm and friendly demeanor.
No longer is a customer service rep at the bottom of the food chain. As the level of responsibility increases, managers are seeking out prospects with college degrees and offering them lifetime growth opportunities. Tech-capable agents are fast becoming the job of the future.
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