Call Center Operations: Aisle Huddles and Other Performance Improvement Techniques

Call Center Performance improvement

It’s no surprise to call center managers and supervisors that hiring & training a high-performance front line is only half the battle. Identifying  techniques to maintain or improve performance in call center operations – and using them properly to motivate agents & encourage ongoing excellence – plays a key role in call center quality assurance, as well as operations.

 Performance Improvement  techniques – The ‘Aisle Huddle’

There are a number of common tactics used to motivate call center front line team members. Impromptu aisle huddles are effective  simply because they are spontaneous and can be used to immediately address issues that arise, when the issues are still fresh in everyone’s mind.

Aisle huddles foster a team approach. They also notify the team that you, the supervisor, are results-oriented…and that you have the same expectation of them. Dispensing rewards during aisle huddles can make them more fun and motivating…and can create an environment in which team members look forward to the huddle.

Employee Coaching is King

From my perspective, the more coaching ‘touches,’ the better. Those who regularly follow CSR’s blog know that I’m an employee development evangelist. Call center team members who are clear on expectations have better morale and perform better. Period. That’s why I’m a firm believer that coaching is king.

Just as companies attempt to maximize ‘touch points’ with customers, supervisors should have as many touch points with team members as possible to positively affect performance call center.

Other effective call center performance improvement tactics include:

  1. Listening to calls and scoring them as objectively, consistently and as often as possible.
  2. Conducting and documenting regularly scheduled coaching sessions. Remember: consistency is key, and the sessions should be as objective as possible.
  3. Holding training – and retraining – programs. Periodically, evaluate your front line team’s results.  If it seems they aren’t ‘getting’ a concept, you should offer a refresher – and be sure to review it again in the aisle huddle.
  4. Surveying your customers after their call with team members. Surveying customers helps you identify issues not just with agent performance during the call, but also any issues with the quality scoring process. Comparing what your customer thinks to the agent’s actual quality score allows call center supervisors to address concerns – whether employee- or scoring-related.
  5. Sharing business data or analytics. Better internal information sharing can have a tremendous impact on a company’s performance.  While we often silo information and maintain it on a need-to-know basis, data sharing with other departments can result in assistance towards exceeding your goals.

What strategies do you use to improve front line performance?