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Why Adopt Automation When I Have WFO

Why Adopt Automation When I Have WFO

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I believe Gartner’s progression from an optimized employee (WFO) has finally matured to the engaged employee (WEM). It’s time to accept that automation can support traditional coaching methods.

Most call center leaders would love to see more coaching. Each of these coaching styles has its merits, so have your pick.  

  • Side-by-Side Coaching  
  • Quality Monitoring (QM) Team  
  • 3rd Party Evaluations  
  • Supervisor-Initiated Coaching  
  • Coach-Initiated Coaching  
  • Self-Coaching  

When I was a QM leader, every coaching session included observation, compliance, suggestions. So why with all the observing, tracking, suggesting and watching, do agents fail to improve?  

It’s simple. Call center leaders have optimized agents to death. 

At the same time, agents don’t feel engaged with the repetitive nature of their job. 

Therefore, I believe Gartner’s progression from an optimized employee (WFO) has finally matured to the engaged employee (WEM). It’s time to accept that automation can support traditional coaching methods. Here’s how. 

1 – Removing the Obstacles to Costly Errors  

A typical workflow looks like this: rekey data, update fields, retrieve customer information. All completed by hand using many screens. Result: increased error rate, long handle time, low first call resolution. Conclusion: poor customer experience. 

Stop observing these steps and take them over. On-screen guidance and automation remove these manual steps. Ease their stress with call center scripts! 

2 Merge and Summarize Information Across Systems  

Gartner said, “technologies that help drive engagement through interaction help (such as next best action, unified desktop, and process guidance and automation) have become an essential dimension of WEM beyond traditional agent management functions.” 1  

Unified Desktop experiences are not about ripping and replacing your CRM system. Unified experiences overlay content that pulls data from several places and merges them into one. By using Smart Agent Assistants and Unified Agent Desktop, we’ve seen clients tackle their most common pain points. The results speak for themselves. 

  1. Reducing talk time by more than 20% with agent guidance - eliminates more than 50% of agent tasks, such as password management and copy/paste.  
  2. Reducing onboarding time for new agents - by as much as 75% with a simplified desktop. Ease of use reduces agent stress too! 
  3. Reducing error rates by 80% automating common tasks. 
  4. Increasing NPS by 10 points – agents can focus on the experience, not on their clunky systems.  

3 Engaged Employees Need Engaging Leaders and Engaging Tools  

Often, call center leaders expect their agents to perform simple tasks using terrible tools. Shouting from the sidelines accomplishes nothing. No one likes to be shouted at, on or off, the job. 

If my daughter struggled with tennis and I shouted at her to get better, would my “coaching” help her improve? If I never bought her new shoes or equipment, would my shouting make her a better player? 

So, first, stop the yelling. 

Second, get rid of the checklist. Upgrade the tools they need to do their job better. It’s a wiser way of coaching and returns better results. 

The right tools can make a difference. An upgraded desktop powered by world-class AI and RPA are must-haves to your existing WFO platforms. Empower your employees and help them cope with complexity. Automation, intelligent assistance and agent guidance are the new waves of workforce engagement. Ride the wave with us. 


1Gartner, Gartner Magic Quadrant for Workforce Engagement Management, Jim Davies and Jim Robinson, February 20, 2020 

Gartner does not endorse any vendor, product or service depicted in its research publications, and does not advise technology users to select only those vendors with the highest ratings or other designation. Gartner research publications consist of the opinions of Gartner’s research organization and should not be construed as statements of fact. Gartner disclaims all warranties, expressed or implied, with respect to this research, including any warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose. 

GARTNER is a registered trademark and service mark of Gartner, Inc. and/or its affiliates in the U.S. and internationally, and is used herein with permission. All rights reserved. 

 

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