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How To Understand & Dramatically Reduce Attrition

Tuesday, 23 April 2019  
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In early 2017, industry researcher, Contact Center Pipeline published findings on what was top of mind to contact and call center executives in the year ahead. The feedback, summarized succinctly, was this: RESOLVING PEOPLE ISSUES.

These call center executives pointed to hiring and retention as their greatest challenges, with motivation and management closely following. Throughout the industry, considerable thought – and investment – is being given to program, policies and prizes to create the stability these leaders’ companies need.

According to the 2016 US Contact Center Decision Makers’ Guide from ContactBabel.com2, the average annual turnover rate for a Customer Service Representative was 29%, with voluntary quit rates representing 60% of this turnover. Sector breakdown paints an more dramatic picture around attrition: from a high of 53% for outsourcers who are 3rd Party TeleServices providers, to 21% recorded in the Financial Services sector. But all of this stands in stark contrast to the all industry workforce average (U.S. only) of 17.8%.

The attrition problem is omnipresent and has been for years. But this is not for lack of solutioning and programmatic change efforts. Unfortunately, after getting beyond the sales pitch and marketing appeal, most solutions fail to deliver, that is, reducing cultures of attrition. We believe solutions miss the mark because they are focusing on the wrong problems. In this article, we discuss: (a) call center and labor issues that work in tandem to create and exacerbate the attrition culture (b) strategies to drive improvement, and (c) the role pre-hire assessments can play in combating the problem.

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