Make Agent Satisfaction a Common Call Center Metric

In a recent ICMI article on key metrics for the call center, we got a comment that agent satisfaction needed to be right up at the top. We can’t disagree with that. Employee engagement has an equal impact on both call center efficiency and customer experience, according to recent research by ICMI, with 57.2% of respondents saying their organizations have identified linkages between employee engagement and operational efficiency and 57.2% saying their organizations have identified linkages between employee engagement and a better customer experience.

It’s important to note, however, that more than one third (40.5%) of centers in this study do not measure employee engagement. And nearly one half (46.6%) of centers represented in the study do not have a documented and ongoing employee engagement measurement process in place to evaluate overall staff satisfaction using data collection and analysis to identify opportunities for improvement.

The good news is that more than two-thirds (66.8%) of contact center professionals surveyed said their organizations are able to address opportunities for improvement with regard to agent engagement and staff satisfaction in a timely manner. Still, a large number of call centers said they are unable to do so.

Nearly half of study participants said their centers (47.6%) have no ESAT measurement/tracking. Most of those centers that do measure ESAT only do so on an annual basis. More than one-third of centers represented do not have a proactive employee feedback process.

It’s important to note that having a process for aligning agent feedback is critical, yet nearly half of the centers surveyed do not, and those currently investing in technologies to improve the employee experience are clearly in the minority.
Improving the agent experience may be difficult, however, for the more than one-fifth (21.5%) of centers that don’t track and measure employee attrition routinely. Of those that do track attrition, less than one quarter of them include developing action plans to mitigate dissatisfaction and attrition drivers and have an employee retention management program in place. That leaves the majority with measurement data but no action plans and another nearly 10% with no formal retention management plans, leaving them in a more reactive than proactive position.

If you’ve got a great agent satisfaction program, you can tell us about it in our comments section below.

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Rose Polchin — 12:31PM on Sep 14, 2011

I posted this on Dick Finnegan's article
And am re-posting here...Thanks for a great article and for further support of the link between engagement and results, Harvard Business Review recently cited, the following: "Corporations listed in Fortune's "100 Best Companies to Work For in America" had equity returns that were 3.5% per year higher than those of their peers, indicating that employee satisfaction correlates positively with shareholder returns, says Alex Edmans of the Wharton School. The results of his study of companies from 1984 through 2009 also indicate that, contrary to prior research, employee satisfaction need not represent managerial slack, Edmans says."

Original source: Edmans, Alex, Does the Stock Market Fully Value Intangibles? Employee Satisfaction and Equity Prices (January 20, 2010). Journal of Financial Economics (JFE), Forthcoming. Available at SSRN: