Be sure to read parts one and two in this series for more great insights from industry leaders, or access our October issue for the full article.
CEO North America, Ireland and Southeast Asia & EVP Global Clients, Majorel
Over the past several months, frontline customer service teams have dynamically handled the unprecedented changes of remote working during a global pandemic. This year’s Customer Service Week takes on new significance because it’s an opportunity to recognize their outstanding commitment in meeting increased customer demands head-on. The relentless dedication and resourcefulness of customer service teams has been a key factor in businesses successfully adjusting to this new environment.
This year’s Customer Service Week theme highlights the importance of teamwork and coming together to provide the best customer service experience possible. A large part of building a successful team, especially in remote-working environments, rests on creating strong and sustainable relationships among colleagues. Ensuring that team members feel valued and enabled to excel in their job is a crucial means to upholding morale.
At Majorel, we are inspired by our people and their commitment to our clients’ customers. In the spirit of Customer Service Week, we are planning a virtual celebration across our region to recognize our staff’s ongoing success and commitment to excellence. Among the events we will have is a live award ceremony via our social media channels to recognize our customer service leaders. We will also host raffles across our North American sites throughout the week.
We have exceeded our customer’s expectations throughout this pandemic, and we want to make sure we recognize our teams that helped us to do this. To kick off the month of October, we will stream a special episode of our monthly online show, Majorel Live!, to discuss diversity and inclusion initiatives globally.
Trainer and On-Site Supervisor, Briljent
I recall my days of taking calls and how a perceived event in the call center would turn a stressful and monotonous day on the phones into something I would look forward to and a way for me to have fun at work. Receiving praise and appreciation from a team lead or supervisor made me feel like I was on Cloud Nine.
Today, since I have a team of agents, I like to take every moment as an opportunity to have some fun with my team members—and of course, appreciate their efforts to help the call center meet service level agreements (SLAs) and take care of our callers.
This Customer Service Week, though our team is working remotely, we still want to have fun by creating daily activity sheets, a Customer Service Week newsletter, daily prizes and definitely appreciation certificates. However, we are always cooking up a few more ideas with our call center’s fun committee, which consists of call center leadership and team members. We are looking to have a few themed days and a Customer Service Week calendar that will display what will be taking place on each day of Customer Service Week.
Our goal is to do what we can to have fun and show our team members that their efforts make a difference for the overall team and our callers.
Founder & CEO, Centrical
We’re celebrating the 29th Customer Service Week this year. Even now, 2020 continues to be a series of challenges—and perhaps no group has faced and met more than frontline employees engaged in customer service.
Frontline employees are “the face of a company.” They interact every day with customers. If they don’t deliver a positive customer experience, much can go wrong. Based on what our customers are telling me about their frontline employees’ actions during the past several months, they deserve tons of appreciation for doing right by customers and their employers.
By way of background, Centrical offers an employee engagement and performance management platform used by such major contact center/customer experience services operations as Teleperformance, TTEC, Sitel, Webhelp, and SYKES as well as companies like Microsoft, Synchrony, and Verizon Cellular Sales to engage, train, and advance the performance of frontline employees.
One word I’ve heard a lot since mid-March is stress. Call volumes are up and many making those calls are understandably stressed. But so, too, are the people handling those calls. Consider what they’re dealing with. Take, for example the experience of customer support teams at TIAA. They were at the early stages of a small group WFH trial when the decision was made to have every customer support advisor operate from their homes. Overnight.
Or the folks at Office Depot/OfficeMax customer service. They went from well-equipped contact centers to their homes where, in many cases, they had to contend with poor internet connectivity and unexpected background noises, like barking dogs, giggling children and whirring ceiling fans. None of which are conducive to focused, fruitful customer interactions.
We all know that positive employee experiences drive positive customer experiences. Yet you’d think COVID-19 would have a detrimental effect on the former, impacting the later. Impressively, Huntington Bank saw its customer satisfaction scores hit its highest-ever level this past summer.
There is much to be said about these and other frontline employees going above and beyond. But it’s also a commentary on their organizations and efforts made to make employees the center of their business success, even in the toughest of times.
If this crisis occurred a few years ago, the ability of these organizations to have their frontline employees stay connected, keep driving toward performance goals, learn new or refresh old skills, and recognize efforts of team members—all on a remote basis—would have been extremely difficult, if not impossible.
Nonetheless, in this unprecedented moment, tens of thousands of frontline employees have been able to perform well, learn more, even send virtual high-fives and fist bumps to colleagues for amazing efforts because their companies are leveraging great tech like AI, Augmented People Intelligence, seamless connectivity to enterprise applications, digital remote learning for newly hired as well as veteran employees—no matter how large the workforce or where they might be working.
Many companies have been using this technology to acknowledge their employees throughout this crisis period. From video profiles that showcase special efforts to raising points won for successfully completing a gamified challenge or learning activity that can be redeemed for WFH-relevant items in virtual stores.
Such moves by companies suggest applauding customer service workers is best done more than one week a year. Rather, they deserve our appreciation every day. Especially this year.