Published: August 03, 2020 | Comments
Say it with me: if you have more than three priorities, you have no priorities.
After months of hustling hard to hit lofty goals, my team at Sharpen started chanting the above mantra. We scribbled it on windows to sear it into our brains. And we recited it at the end of our kickoff meeting every Monday morning. You see, we’d been stretching ourselves too thin while trying to reach seven goals all at once. And, we were quickly on the brink of burnout because of it. Not to mention, we weren’t making enough progress toward those seven goals.
Pinballing between too many priorities just wasn’t working. This kind of pressure causes paralysis – you have so much to accomplish, you end up accomplishing very little. Your agents can be overwhelmed with metrics to watch, goals to reach, and constant progress to make.
The easiest plan of attack is to make your goals more attainable (and less daunting for your team). That’s why we’re mapping out how to set quarterly customer service goals to set your team up for success. Break your goals up into 90-day sprints and watch your ROI soar. Here’s how.
1. Align your quarterly contact center goals with company goals.
Set your quarterly contact center goals with your company’s overarching goals in mind. What does your team need to accomplish in the next 90 days to ensure you’re advancing your company’s goals?
Create a list of goals that are directly actionable to your team and execute on them. If your corporate leaders set a goal to reduce customer churn by 5%, focus on how your contact center team impacts this outcome.
Then, outline specific goals, objectives and benchmarks to help your agents improve churn. Set your sights on improving CSAT scores and FCR to make your customers happy. Another option is to work to build a feedback loop with your peer leaders, so you can address other organizational issues that lead to higher churn.
Create a 90-day action plan to show progress and alignment to company goals. That way, you and your agents contribute to the big picture and prove the value of your contact center.
2. Narrow your focus and choose SMART goals.
Next up, use data to inform your quarterly strategies.
Let’s say you review monthly dashboards and find evidence that low satisfaction is linked to high churn at your company. Now, you know if your team improves satisfaction, you’ll reduce customer churn, too.
From there, you can create SMART goals that focus on improving customer satisfaction – breaking each goal down into smaller chunks that are manageable for your team. SMART goals clarify expectations, deadlines and required action items.
Let’s say you need to improve CSAT by 10% to lower churn by 5%. Knowing this, set monthly milestones to help your agents track progress. How much do your agents need to improve CSAT each month? What about each week?
Slice your goals into smaller, actionable pieces so agents understand what they need to do each day to meet the standards you’ve mapped out. They also can feel good about their progress along the way.
3. Give your team ownership over each goal.
Setting out to reach high-level goals can feel intimidating. Break your goals down into objectives for which each agent can feel a sense of ownership. Use the GOST model – a set of high-level goals and waterfall objectives – to create detailed objectives your agents can act on to help your team hit quarterly targets.
Let’s stick with the goal we outlined above – improving CSAT scores by 10% in 90 days. Here are three example objectives to give your team action items that fuel ownership over each goal.
- Shrink hold times to less than 2 minutes
- Improve First Contact Resolution by 10%
- Get 5x as many responses to CSAT surveys
4. Assign KPIs and metrics to track daily progress.
Customer experience expert Jeff Toister found a connection between agent burnout and lack of visibility into daily metrics and progress. And only a slim 21% of employees feel their performance is managed in a way that helps them do better work.
Build wallboards and dashboards to give your agents daily visibility into their metrics. When your agents have a clear view of their daily progress alongside their target metrics, they’re less likely to burnout and more likely to autocorrect performance when they’re falling behind.
Align your core metrics to the goals and objectives you’ve set. Then, offer insight into the KPIs that have the biggest impact on your satisfaction and churn goals – like hold times, FCR and CSAT
Don’t stop there. Use agent metrics as indicators for where you need to jump in and offer more coaching and resources. You’ll have tangible results to kick off important performance conversations with each agent, so you can work together to improve outcomes.
Giving your team the tools to track progress and know where they stand builds confidence in their ability to fix problems on the fly. It also shows each agent the profound impact their daily work has on your overall contact center work.