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How To Manage Remote Call Center Teams Effectively

April 9, 2020
Learn how to motivate call center employees in 4 steps

Blog

How To Manage Remote Call Center Teams Effectively

by | Apr 9, 2020 | Business Process Management, Work At Home

Even before COVID-19 made it a necessity, having your remote call center operate effectively was a sensible strategy. After all, with the flexibility of work from home call center setups, can’t we manage customer interactions from virtually anywhere at any time?

To be clear, there are inherent challenges in transitioning your Contact Centre agents to a virtual call center environment. However, despite these challenges, the remote call center economy is still worth considering. With agents working from home, businesses can maintain continuity and adaptability. This shift not only accommodates the current global situation but also embraces the future of customer service operations through remote call center companies. After all, remote workers are happier workers because of how they benefit from working remotely. Many remote workers cite the flexible schedule, no daily commute, and uncomfortable work attire is a huge selling point.

Management also reaps significant benefits from having Contact Centre agents work remotely. Specifically, there’s a much larger pool of candidates to draw from when you’re not limited by geographical boundaries. This means that for your remote call center, you can hire based solely on skill and experience, regardless of where the call center work at home agents are located. And let’s not forget the lower operational costs associated with a work from home call center setup. 

 So, how do you make a virtual call center workforce effective for a contact center? Well, let’s start by looking at some of the critical concerns that you’ll need to address to ensure your remote call center companies are successful. These concerns include maintaining high service standards and ensuring seamless communication, all while your agents are working from home. 

Of course, working remotely isn’t without some challenges of its own. In particular, there are several concerns that most Contact Centre managers will have when transitioning from a physical to a remote Contact Centre.

Those concerns can be broken into three broad categories: productivity, community, and security.

Productivity

  • In a remote call center environment, how can management effectively track and measure the work output of their agents working from home? 
  • Is there an efficient system in place to monitor the productivity and efficiency of work from home call center agents?  

Community

  • With virtual call centers, there’s a concern about agents working from home feeling isolated. What strategies are there to mitigate this? 
  • How can a sense of community be fostered among Contact Centre representatives who are part of a remote call center, ensuring they remain connected and engaged? 

Security

  • When agents working from home might use public internet connections, how does this impact the security of remote call center companies? 
  • In the diverse and dynamic setting of a virtual call center, with variables like location, network, and device, what measures are in place to ensure data and communication security? 

How to Manage Agents with Virtual Call Center  

By leveraging a combination of advanced software tools and industry best practices, you can successfully make working from home call center operations effective for your Contact Centre. We’ve compiled a comprehensive guide that includes tips, tools, and strategies specifically designed to maximize productivity in a virtual call center setup, foster a strong sense of community among remote call center agents, maintain a high-quality customer experience, and even inject an element of fun into the workday for your agents working from home. These resources are tailored to help remote call center companies navigate and thrive in the evolving landscape of customer support. 

Make Check-Ins, Logs, and Reports a Daily Requirement

When you’re not able to monitor their performance or progress in a virtual call center, how do you ensure each remote call center agent is on-task and following company guidelines?

To maintain optimal productivity levels in your work from home call center, regular check-ins are key. They can simulate the effect of stopping by each team member’s workspace in a traditional call center. 

These check-ins, vital for call center remote teams, can be conducted as group sessions or individually, using tools like group video chat, conference calls, or team messaging platforms. For larger teams in remote call centers, group check-ins are more feasible than individual meetings. In between these sessions, team members should log their progress for daily or weekly reports. 

Among various tools suitable for remote call center companies, Slack is a popular choice. It offers text, voice, and video communication in a single app, making it ideal for agents working from home. 

Use a Quality Assurance Tool

Since you operate a remote call center, there’s a good chance that you already employ a quality assurance tool or strategy tailored for virtual call centers. This approach is essential in maintaining high standards, especially when managing agents working from home in a work from home call center environment. For instance, maybe you use a cloud-based software tool — like Talkdesk or MaestroQA — that collects customer feedback after each call. And if you don’t, then now is the time to start. 

With a quality assurance tool in your virtual call center, you’ll gain deeper insights into your remote call center agents’ job performance. This adds an additional layer to the data you gather from mandatory check-ins and reports in a work from home call center setting. Combining these methods, you should obtain an accurate picture of how your agents are performing while they work from home. 

Foster a Sense of Community

There’s a good chance that your agents working from home in the virtual call center will feel somewhat isolated, especially if they’re transitioning from a communal office space. Therefore, it’s crucial to foster a strong sense of community among these remote call center agents as much as possible. 

 The best way to achieve this is by facilitating easy communication among your remote call center agents. This is where tools like Slack become invaluable in a work from home call center. Many companies with remote call centers add designated channels in Slack for team members to engage in non-work-related conversations, fostering a sense of community among agents working from home. 

 Slack itself even encourages this with others saying that it makes for happier employees and a better company culture. 

Video chat is another tool that can help your remote call center agents socialize face-to-face, vital for team cohesion in virtual call centers. Social media also offers an alternative for agents working from home to stay connected. 

Make the Work Fun

Burnout and low morale can be more significant concerns in a remote call center than in a traditional office setting. Consider this: agents working from home spend their days in the same environment, which can become monotonous. This, combined with the inherent responsibilities of a virtual call center and the isolation of each team member, necessitates a conscious effort to boost morale. Injecting fun into their routine is often the best approach. 

Gamification, which involves making a task more game-like, can be particularly effective in work from home call center environments. For instance, introducing a points system for achievements like closing a sale or achieving high customer feedback scores can be motivating. Incentives like gift cards or the option to end a shift early, while still earning a full day’s pay, can also be great motivators for remote call center agents. 

Make Your Remote Call Centre a Success With ContactPoint 360

The prospect of your Contact Centre agents working remotely can indeed be daunting. However, there are numerous tools and strategies to maximize consistency, productivity, and morale in a remote call center environment. ContactPoint360 is equipped to assist with these challenges, offering solutions tailored for virtual call centers and work from home call center setups. 

 At ContactPoint360, we offer solutions to strengthen your remote workforce, many of which are based on business process outsourcing. 

Whether you’re directing overflow to our remote call centers or utilizing any of our extensive services, your team, including agents working from home, will be better equipped to deliver an optimal customer experience consistently. Our expertise in managing virtual call centers ensures every interaction meets your high standards. 

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