The current pandemic and its restrictions have forever altered the way every company on the globe does its business, especially for call centers. Adapting to new challenges, like contacting customers and reworking business models, is more crucial for success than ever.
COVID- Effects: Call Centers Are Changed Forever
A rather shocking announcement came only recently from the Toronto- Dominion Bank. As a response to COVID-19 restrictions, the bank moved almost all of their call- center employees into the home office permanently. Nearly 9000 agents of TD Bank from a total of 15 cities located in North America from the USA to Canada are only some of the thousands of employees all over the world that will work no longer regularly in offices.
From banks to even real estate, most sectors face similar changes. The move might be shocking since most firms were most likely entirely unprepared for measures like this. But over the next year, more are likely to follow.
The 24/7 working agents for customer service serve mainly banking, insurance, and wealth in Canada. By assets, the sixth- biggest bank in all of North America, US- lender TD Banks broad network gives it access from Florida up till Maine.
This process is comparable to other companies, which are rushing to prepare their customer service department for home office, amid a pandemic that cost almost a million deaths and businesses around the world closed. The Bank of Montreal (BMO) has also taken a similar step. 50% of its employees currently work from home. At the Royal Bank of Canada, it is even 85% of personnel and commercial banking.
According to a report from Contact Babelt, more than 70% of agents in contact centers in the industry work from home. In 2019, it was only 13 percent. Banks and companies had to create new drafts for the technology, risk component, deployment, and logistics. They need every single laptop and employer they had to continue with their work.
Adaptability: How To Achieve Post-Pandemic Success
Adaptability is an essential skill for times like these. Probably not a single company did any form of pandemic preparation. Still, many companies are continually creating new customer service approaches to handle customers and operate profitably. Companies need to trust that their employees are as productive in their own homes as they were at the office.
TD supports homeworking by its employees. They get ten additional personal days to help with daycare issues and the ability to change schedules and do split shifts. However, it is questionable whether they will continue to do so if the pandemic continues to spread.
Feedback after the changes aimed at home office
The solution to the home office got very positive feedback from TDs employees. The bank offers ten more personal days off to adapt to possible daycare issues, scheduling conflicts, and potential changes in shifts. However, the question of whether or not these changes can last when the pandemic worsens remains.
Provisions for employees in the home office are already provided by many. A firm that includes an employee’s input will gain success through a highly motivated workforce since they are more interested in providing efficient work. If some employees are delegated to prepare evaluation stages and requirement line- puts, pay attention to their results. They will be the key to keep a system of home office employees productive and efficient in the future.
When business activity returns to its usual state, some part of your staff will still have to work from home when their colleagues transition back into the office, overcrowding it in the process. This will ensure safety and a good solution for people who have to work while taking care of ill family members, out-of-school children, or toddlers.
This process is very helpful in the broad palette of technology, apps, and AI- tech centers available. It is easier to place investments and design new communication channels for better customer assistance this way.
Use the Current Crisis to Prepare for an Uncertain Future
The current events did have some lasting training effects on companies. Even if the infections rise with the flu season and autumn return, the preparation has improved immensely future restrictions or even lockdowns.
A newly created crisis-team could monitor a department’s performance and implement measures if another crisis occurs without wasting any time. If the situation requires it, you can empower the team’s abilities and achieve the best possible performance under challenging circumstances. Keeping a good overview of all their decisions and the results can be crucial. Companies can use this to evaluate similar situations and actions in the future.
COVID-19 might be likely to accompany us into 2021. However, this does not mean that your business, especially call centers, can not perform successfully. With adaptability, experience, and technology to guide your employees, they will face new challenges as successfully as possible. Preparation is vital- and adaptability more crucial than ever.
If you want to learn more about call centers be sure to check out the Katrium contact center webpage.