Agents are the most critical resource in a contact center and yet the hardest to retain as evident with high attrition rates. As per the NICE ICMI survey 25% of agents left the company in the past 12 months; 20% of agents left the contact center but stayed within the company; and 18% of agents changed positions in the contact center. Investing in AX has risen up as one of the top priorities contact center leaders are undertaking to engage, motivate and most importantly retain agents.
AX delivers greater Customer Experience (CX)
It is unfortunate that many companies are spending time in CX initiatives without fixing the fundamental driver – AX. As per the NICE ICMI survey, one of the biggest motivations for agents is solving customer issues. And, one of their biggest frustrations is hard to use/ inadequate tools. The agent literally struggles to get the right data about the customer – they login into at least 4-10 applications and handle about 1,100 screen switches within a day. If the agent has better information about the customer right at the point of interaction, that will essentially not just drive AX with an easy to use toolset, but will help the agent solve the problem at hand boosting CX at the same time. Not just that, it gets them more motivated since they want to be customer heroes, solving the tougher customer issues not the ones handled by IVRs. The case for CX and AX correlation is built! Happy agents make happy customers and it is a great virtuous cycle to be in.
AX drives costs down
With improved AX, agents have better motivation and stay longer with the company thereby reducing attrition. The cost of attrition definitely outweighs the investment in better onboarding and ongoing training especially for better multi and omnichannel interactions. Investing in easy-to-use integrated toolset, not just keeps agents motivated but also improves efficiency metrics like AHT and utilization rates, bringing down operational costs.
Building AX is an iterative process
Building AX is an iterative process and involves contact center wide initiatives to align people, process and technology. It is not a big bang one-time effort. It is a conscious effort to take a relook at existing processes, workflows, tools, training, organizational roles and work through an iterative improvement plan – one-step at a time.
NICE and ICMI have come up with an AX maturity model that shows the building blocks required to move AX maturity, one step at a time. Learn more about this model and insights on moving AX by registering to our webinar on “Improving Agent Experience, One Step at a Time” on Dec 11, 2019 at 11:00am PT.