Trends in Call Center Staffing: What to Expect in the Future
The contact center industry is constantly evolving to meet the ever-changing needs of customers and businesses alike. As technology advances and customer expectations shift, contact centers must adapt to stay relevant. This article will explore the top trends in the contact center industry, as shared by a leading call center staffing agency. These trends highlight the importance of customer-centricity, digital transformation, remote work, and emerging technologies in shaping the future of contact centers.
A Call Center Staffing Agency Shares Top Trends in the Contact Center Industry
Call centers still rely on a human presence to provide customer service. Call center recruiters are an integral part of this necessary service. They have a front-row seat for the trends impacting call centers. Workway is proud to serve the call center industry as a staffing provider. Some trends affecting our clients in 2023 include the increasing use of artificial intelligence (AI) software and the number of remote workers. How do these workforce trends affect call center staffing agencies and their clients? What can we expect for the remainder of 2023 — and beyond?
Call Centers Will See a Rise in AI and Automation
Advancements in technology, such as AI, automation, and analytics, are reshaping the contact center industry. CMS Wire says, “AI and machine learning are coming of age, and this year is set to become the year that AI dominates the customer service call center.” AI-powered chatbots and virtual assistants handle routine inquiries, freeing up human agents to focus on more complex and value-added tasks. These virtual assistants are continuously learning from customer interactions and getting better at providing accurate and timely responses.
Automation streamlines contact center processes by automating repetitive tasks like call routing, data entry, and appointment scheduling. This improves operational efficiency, reduces errors, and enhances agent productivity.
AI and machine learning algorithms have also improved interactive voice response (IVR) at the front end of call center processes. While customers say they are generally frustrated with too much automation, IVRs empowered by AI can “provide real answers to the questions customers ask,” according to CMS Wire.
Additionally, AI-powered analytics tools gain insights from customer data, monitor agent performance, and identify areas for improvement. While a recent Zendesk report suggests AI is currently underutilized in call center settings, don’t expect adoption rates to stay low in the coming years. Sales of AI software in call center operations will grow by nearly 9% through 2028 to a more than $13 billion industry.
Adapting to Remote and Hybrid Call Center Staffing Models
The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the adoption of remote work across various industries, including contact centers. Today, Pew Research Center says about one-third of U.S. workers who can work from home do so, while other employees are working in hybrid roles that require a few days in an office in addition to working from home.
Many companies in the call center industry have transitioned to a remote or hybrid work model, allowing agents to work from the comfort of their homes. Call center staffing agencies typically highlight the benefits of remote and hybrid work models, such as increased agent satisfaction, reduced operational costs, and access to a broader talent pool.
The flexibility of remote work has also proven beneficial during unforeseen circumstances, such as natural disasters or public health emergencies. It allows contact centers to maintain business continuity and uninterrupted customer support even in challenging situations.
No matter the industry, most employees say they would prefer remote work to any other work model. But remote work challenges in-house call centers and their customer service staffing agencies.
Cloud-based contact center solutions and collaboration tools enable remote agents to access the systems, tools, and knowledge bases to serve customers effectively. Contact centers are also investing in employee engagement and well-being initiatives to ensure remote agents feel connected and supported. With remote work apparently here to stay, expect these trends to only increase in the coming years.
Contact Center Training Programs Will Need to be Revamped
Training programs play a crucial role in equipping agents with the skills and knowledge needed to provide exceptional customer service in the rapidly evolving landscape of customer contact centers. However, emerging trends in the call center industry indicate that more than traditional training methods are required. As the industry embraces digital transformation, automation, and customer-centricity, contact center training programs must revamp to meet the changing demands and expectations. Watch for these changes in how we train our call center teams in the future:
- Increase in technology-driven training: One of the key trends reshaping the contact center industry is the integration of advanced technologies like AI and automation. Contact center training programs must incorporate training on these emerging technologies to enable agents to collaborate with AI systems and leverage automation tools effectively. Agents need to understand how these technologies work, how to use them to enhance customer interactions, and how to troubleshoot any issues that may arise.
- Emphasis on customer-centric training: One of the key trends reshaping the contact center industry is the integration of advanced technologies like AI and automation. Contact center training programs must incorporate training on these emerging technologies to enable agents to collaborate with AI systems and leverage automation tools effectively. Agents need to understand how these technologies work, how to use them to enhance customer interactions, and how to troubleshoot any issues that may arise.
- Training for soft skills development: In addition to technical knowledge, soft skills are becoming increasingly valuable in the contact center industry. Empathy, adaptability, critical thinking, and emotional intelligence are essential attributes for agents to excel in their roles. Training programs should prioritize the development of these skills through interactive workshops, role-playing exercises, and real-life simulations. Call centers should emphasize effective communication, conflict resolution, and problem-solving to equip agents with the necessary skills to handle challenging customer interactions.
Revamping contact center training programs is crucial to align them with the evolving industry trends and empower agents to deliver outstanding customer experiences. As the industry continues to evolve, organizations must prioritize ongoing training and development to keep their agents equipped with the latest tools, knowledge, and skills required to excel in their roles.
How a Call Center Staffing Agency Can Help
Customer service staffing agencies can help call centers prepare for these and other trends in their evolving industry. Call center staffing agencies can find candidates with highly specialized tools while employing sophisticated technologies to improve their efforts. Here’s how call center recruiters can help the industry in the coming years.
Staffing Agencies Can Recruit Agents with Specialized Skills
A call center staffing agency specializing in call center recruitment understands the unique requirements and challenges of the industry. They can source candidates with specific industry knowledge and experience, such as those who have worked in customer service, sales, technical support, or other relevant fields. By recruiting agents with industry-specific expertise, staffing agencies ensure that call centers have a workforce equipped with the knowledge and skills to handle the unique demands of their sector. This focus leads to improved customer interactions and a deeper understanding of customer needs. Staffing agencies can identify candidates with the technical proficiency necessary to work with these technologies effectively. Whether you’re looking for experience with customer relationship management (CRM) systems, knowledge of contact center software, or familiarity with cloud-based solutions, staffing agencies can screen and select candidates with the technical skills required to thrive in a technology-driven call center environment.
Call Center Recruiters Will Rely on Analytics and Performance Metrics
The increasing reliance on analytics and performance metrics is reshaping the recruitment process in the call center industry. By leveraging data-driven insights, recruiters can identify the key performance indicators, use predictive analytics for candidate selection, and assess cultural fit. This approach enables call centers to make more informed decisions, improve the quality of their hires, and build a high-performing workforce. As the industry evolves, call center recruiters who embrace analytics and performance metrics will be better positioned to identify top talent and drive success in their organizations.
Call Center Staffing Agencies Will Recruit for Cultural and Linguistic Diversity
Call centers in today’s globalized world often cater to customers from diverse linguistic backgrounds. Multilingual call center agents can effectively communicate with customers in their native languages. Staffing agencies can tap into their network of candidates with proficiency in multiple languages and recruit agents who can provide support in different languages. This expertise enables call centers to offer personalized and localized customer experiences, increasing customer satisfaction and loyalty.
Partner with a Specialized Customer Service Staffing Agency to Find Top Talent for Your Call Center
Call center staffing agencies specializing in call center recruitment play a crucial role in identifying and recruiting agents with specialized skills. These agencies have the expertise to find candidates who can meet the unique demands of the call center industry. By partnering with a staffing agency like Workway, call centers in any industry can ensure they have a highly skilled and capable workforce equipped to deliver outstanding customer experiences and drive business success.
If your call center needs help finding resources, it’s time for a new partnership with Workways’s call center recruiting team. Contact us today to find out more about our call center staffing services.