I'm extremely fortunate to have the opportunity to speak with our customers about their call center innovation. I spoke recently with one of our customers who employs a 100% at-home workforce. The company receives so many applications for their few job openings that they had to develop a patented software to filter through the applications and determine the best fit candidates to actually interview. We have another customer that employs registered nurses in an at-home model. During a years-long nursing shortage in the United States, that company is in the same situation - more candidates than there are jobs to fill. The benfits of the at-home model for hiring and retention have been proven time and again.
Our CMO, Mariann McDonagh, posed a different question recently in an article in 1to1 Magazine: do happier agents make happier customers? She makes a great case for the fact that, while we have great evidence that the growing at-home movement certainly creates happier agents, it makes sense that the end customer service result is also better.
As Paul Vaillancourt, vice president of customer care at online technology services provider support.com, said, "Home agents can spend more time on the phone because they're not going to get stuck in traffic or delayed in the lunch room. They can be hired to a higher standard because you can choose from a nationwide talent pool. They have work-at-home advantages that keep them happy. It's hard to prove that these things translate into loyal customers and repeat business, but it seems logical that they make a difference."
What do you think? Have you seen evidence that happier agents translate to happier customers?