Two Types of Contact Center Agents Most Impacted by Real-Time Coaching

Yesterday, Cresta’s Senior Director of Sales and Go-To-Market Strategy, Sid Kumaran, and Customer Success Manager, Brittany Bell, hosted a webinar digging into the results of our recent report on sales effectiveness in revenue-generating contact centers. However, they also shared some of their own takeaways from the results based on their respective years of experience in the contact center space, whether in it themselves or through our customers and partners. 

In today’s blog post, we’ll be sharing three of the key insights that Brittany and Sid discussed and why these matter to the modern contact center. 

Download the replay: Get the full scoop on best practices for sales effectiveness in contact centers now! 

Unlock sales in the contact center by ‘assuming the sale’

We asked survey respondents to break down which behaviors they train agents on to increase sales conversion rates, and as Sid pointed out, it was not surprising that the top two were ‘Recommending’ and ‘Discovery’. These are certainly two ‘basics’ of sales training. 

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However, he also noted that what we’ve seen with our customer base is that the simple act of getting agents to assume the sale at the end of the call has been one of the easiest behaviors to add that returns such incredible impact. This looks like having agents ask questions like, “What email should I send your receipt to?” or saying “Whenever you’re ready, I’m ready to take down your credit card information.” In one of our customers, making this small but powerful addition to the behaviors they followed on every single call led to a lift in sales win rates from 10% to 15-16%. 

And with fewer than half (41%) of companies in our survey actually deploying a methodology to track and measure the behaviors their agents are following, this is clearly still an area very ripe for change and improvement. 

Outcome-based insights are critical to long-term success

In the second poll during the webinar, Brittany and Sid asked attendees which pain points they were most hoping to solve through the implementation of AI technology. 33% said ‘Improving outcomes (conversion, sales, retention). Just as they discussed the importance of understanding the behaviors that are actually driving success among agents during customer interactions, Brittany and Sid emphasized how important it is to also understand the different outcomes that result from these behaviors.

Brittany discussed how her customers who are using Cresta’s Outcome Insights are able to take the outcome of every customer conversation and measure that against whether or not identified behaviors have been followed. As she explained, managers can really only focus on one or two behaviors per agent per coaching cycle – if your ‘focus’ is on too many things, it’s ultimately on nothing. This deeper understanding leads to more effective, real-time coaching that materially impacts the outcomes of each and every customer interaction.

Real-time coaching will impact two types of agents the most

The last part of the survey asked respondents to speak to their future planning and the key projects they are planning to focus on in the next 12 months. Two of the standout responses were about increasing revenue through improving agent effectiveness (60%)  along with improving the agent experience (59%).  

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With a keen focus on agents and employees, Brittany commented that while the introduction of real-time coaching has tremendous impacts on the entire contact center, it will be especially impactful for two segments of agents.

First are low-performing agents; by introducing real-time coaching, contact centers can ensure that their lower performers who aren’t quite as sure when or how to say something have quick access to the information they need to be successful. Managers can quickly and easily coach on the behaviors of top performers, leveling up those who may be struggling a bit more. 

The second segment of agents who stand to especially benefit from real-time coaching are new hires. The learning curve in a contact center, with high volume and often complex customer interactions, can be steep, taking several weeks for an agent to become as proficient as their more experienced counterparts. In those critical first 30-60 days, real-time coaching improves the odds not only that they will retain in the organization, but also improves their ability to perform and perhaps even hit or exceed early performance goals. Overall, this improves employee engagement and satisfaction, which as Brittany notes, have plenty of downstream impacts of their own. 

To learn even more from these two Cresta experts and to dig into the results of our survey report, download the webinar replay now and share with your team

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