Consider Embracing Flexibility in Your Contact Center

By Steve Brubaker, InfoCision Chief of Staff

As a business owner, you have always maintained a traditional, on-site work environment. As such, your contact center has never granted Work-at-Home privileges, and you prefer to hire local — as opposed to remote — customer service Communicators.

While this policy may have suited your contact center in the past, it’s time to ask whether it’s still aligned with the needs and demands of your workers. The business landscape has changed dramatically in recent years, and workers today — particularly contact center Communicators — are demanding flexible scheduling policies that allow them to work where they want, and in some cases even when they want.

Rest assured, your contact center won’t be the only one changing its strategy to accommodate its Communicators’ needs.  Many customer service administrators are now adjusting their policies and allowing Work-at-Home privileges. According to Gallup, 43 percent of Americans spent at least some time working remotely in 2016. This is an increase of four percent from a previous poll conducted in 2012.

Soak that in for a moment: Almost 50 percent of the American workforce is experimenting with teleworking.

Amazon is one big name provider that is doing so. The company recently announced a plan to hire more than 5,000 virtual Communicators. These new Work-at-Home positions, which will roll out over the next year, will provide competitive wages and benefits for employees that work at least 20 hours per week. Some Communicators will even be eligible for prepaid college tuition. According to The News Tribune, the jobs will comply with local minimum wage laws.

Of course, embracing telework is no small change and it’s not something you and your team should jump into without a sound plan outlining acceptable policies and security considerations. As the World Economic Forum explains, flexible work is one of the biggest drivers of business model transformation which also makes it a topmost concern.

“Telecommuting, co-working spaces, virtual teams, freelancing and online talent platforms are all on the rise, transcending the physical boundaries of the office or factory floor and redefining the boundary between one’s job and private life in the process,” the World Economic Forum states. “Modern forms of workers’ organization, such as digital freelancers’ unions, and updated labor market regulations are beginning to emerge to complement these new organizational models.”

So round up your team and start a conversation about migrating to a virtual contact center. It could be one of the best decisions you make in your facility.

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