We’ve probably all heard of quality assessment (QA) before, where a quality specialist goes over agent interactions and checks to see if there are any possible areas of improvement or development. But what if we turn that top-down model on its head and instead embrace a collaborative approach, empowering them to be co-assessors? What if we ask them to self-reflect on their own performance, rather than only respond to the feedback of a third party?
I’ve heard quite a few arguments against this, so before you can object, let me list some of the more common ones.
- Agents might not be objective if given the chance to self-score, being far too lenient on themselves
- We already provide ample opportunities for coaching and training. Taking them off the line for self-scoring is just more unproductive time
These are valid considerations, but I’d ask you to take a moment and approach this from a different perspective, from the front line perspective of an agent – “I’m now not only being actively involved in assessing my performance, but I’m being given a voice in my personal development!”
By involving the agent in the assessment process, we’re ensuring that they are engaged on a whole new level, and what do you think the chances are that increasing the level of engagement will lead to an increase in the quality of their performance?
Agent engagement as a retention and motivation strategy
Engaged agents are a huge plus for team morale, and by turning them into active participants in their development path, we are empowering them by creating a sense of ownership, and we open the door to a world of proactive behaviors.
Studies have shown a high satisfaction rate in agents who actively participate, and this can translate into very tangible benefits. Agents who are highly engaged are:
- Eight times more likely to stay than leave within the first year
- Sixteen times more likely to refer their friends to the company
- Three times more likely to feel extremely empowered to resolve customer issues
Unfortunately, in most work environments agents have limited power to define their development path. All too often, they are restricted to having an impact only within the framework for performance and development built by someone else. Self-scoring is a tool to break free of these preset boundaries and enable agents to be part of their own evolution.
Self-scoring creates a non-judgmental QA process
This becomes especially powerful when we emphasize the fact that QA is so much more than a management tool, with scores divvied out in bright reds and greens. QA provides raw data to identify opportunities for coaching. It’s meant to empower trainers and coaches by giving them a platform to discover where they can best focus their attention, and in turn, this should deliver real benefits back to the agents through tailored and personalized training.
Self-scoring can help to make agents far more receptive and open to these kinds of customized approaches to coaching. When people are given the chance to assess their own shortcomings, they are less likely to feel singled out or unfairly judged than when these assessments are coming externally from an analyst they have perhaps never met.
By creating this open and transparent environment, trainers and coaches will find that self-scoring can improve the efficiency and content of their coaching sessions. As agents gain insight and voice into their development, their motivation increases in line with their performance, and any action plans borne from self-assessment tend to produce stronger and longer-lasting results.
What does your business gain?
This means benefits for agents, and benefits for coaches and trainers. So it should be no surprise that there are also benefits for your business. As agent performance and motivation improve, and this will result in improved CSAT and NPS. Self-scoring gives agents an opportunity to look at their customer interactions from a completely different perspective, and it’s these moments of observation that help to crystallize the end-goal for any agent – creating the best possible customer experience. And you’d be hard-pressed to find someone who doesn’t want to boast of that!
By having your agents engaged in their developmental process, an innate affinity towards contribution to improving work processes and strategies is nurtured. Starting with their own skills and knowledge, they gain a greater understanding of where the business as a whole can improve, and more importantly, want to help to work towards that improvement.
Highly engaged employees are almost 500% more committed to helping their company succeed, and self-scoring engages them on multiple levels. Should be a no-brainer, right?