Compliant Call Recording and Homeworking
First contact and call centre workers are one category who have been able, thanks to a combination of cloud technology and powerful equipment like Hybrid working call recording solutions from Retell, to maintain something like ‘business as usual’ during the various lockdowns over the past year. However, what will their workday actually look like, when we finally emerge from lockdowns and restrictions, and post vaccination is free to return to the office?
Not Every Home Has an Office
Call centre and first contact workers are often younger employees, who might be living with their family or in a shared house. It’s not practical to assume they’ve got a decent-sized home with dedicated space that’s acoustically and ergonomically good for them to use as a designated workspace.
And yet there are some forward-thinking companies that have embraced tools like Microsoft Teams, Zoom and alike who are now fully embracing homeworking for their employees. Cloud-based platforms and services have transformed our understanding of what is possible on a practical level. And now we’ve opened the door to acceptable ways of working when away from the office how do we continue to support homeworking now we know that it works?
Companies have learnt that they can trust their employees, their communications solutions have call routing all works. The customer experience hasn’t be altered significantly and in many cases, it has improved.
As the costs of the pandemic start to bite when the furlough scheme ends, companies will need to decide how much space they will continue to need for their traditional office location. There will also be a bunch of staff who have realised that they don’t like their commute, have wanted to work from home for years, or who are going to have the chance to feedback saying; we’ve proved that it works, and you have to consider some kind of flexible working.
Indeed, if people are able to make working from home for the first time work right now – with surging demands on their connectivity and service providers, zero preparation and planning, and often with kids, animals, parcel delivery interruptions and other family members underfoot – then it’s going to be hard to make a business case for hybrid working not being a viable option going forward.
Some kind of flexible approach will surely be a sensible outcome, taking the learning and best practice from the past 12 months into a more flexible and customised way of working for the long term benefit for all.
The Flexible Future
In our opinion, we are going to see a change in the way first contact teams work within organisations and indeed a divergence from traditional contact centres. There are quick-thinking business leaders that will continue to accelerate all the good work they’ve done over the past year. What some have demonstrated is that by increasing the communication flow from management out to the employees they have made people feel supported and less stressed.
And those companies who have handled this situation well will further benefit by trashing the traditional thinking of the old reporting with meaningless KPIs and will start to measure what really matters.
Meeting regulatory compliance is way more valuable than the average call handling time for example. An underlying empathy has been laid bare for all workers at all levels which leads to better conversations between companies, their staff and their customers. Relentlessly measuring and benchmarking made companies lose sight of the really important delta – Is what we are doing working?
It’s hoped that the benefit of the pandemic for successful businesses will be to embrace digital transformation and make it work for them. After all, if my 75 year old Mother can organise a zoom call to catch up with her family then every business can embrace better phone systems and compliant call recording services.
Talk to us to find out how we can support your move to hybrid working with your communications platforms.
CIPD's advice on monitoring staff when working from home
For employers that have perceived a reduction in productivity amongst their workforce, the most common cited issues revolve around a lack of motivation and engagement, difficulties in ensuring staff co-operation and a lack of ability to monitor staff performance. So, to what extent could or should employers measure and monitor the productivity of homeworkers? How can we ensure productivity and keep staff motivated and engaged? And finally, how can we collaborate most effectively working from home?
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