Customer Service: How Employee Recognition Programs Can Keep CSRs Happy
Theoretically, keeping your customer service reps (CSRs) happy has much to do with keeping your customers happy. Happy and motivated employees will do a better job selling -- both cross-selling and upselling offers over the phone. Plus, tightening labor markets mean you have to provide a competitive advantage over other area employers that prospective employees will be drawn to, according to “Rewards & Recognition Best Practices,” a recently released whitepaper from customer service consultancy The Ascent Group. Following are tips and strategies offered in the whitepaper:
* Look for appropriate behavior. “Management must have a process in place so managers and supervisors are actively looking at employees to identify those opportunities to recognize, and reward good performance,” Ascent Group officials write. Essentially, if you don’t make the time to notice and praise positive performance, CSRs will feel neglected.
* Involve your CSRs in designing a rewards program. Whether through surveys, focus groups, meetings or just asking your employees how they’d like to be recognized, a well-designed, effective rewards program will seek employee involvement, the whitepaper’s authors write. Through these methods, form a baseline of CSRs’ expectations regarding what actions deserve rewards and what those rewards should be. “Management can then align rewards with expectations and then focus on the behaviors that should be rewarded,” the Ascent Group writes.
* Keep rewards and recognitions prompt. A highly valued set of rewards is worth little without a consistent way to track and recognize superior performance, the authors point out.
* Use spontaneous, personal recognition. Informal person-to-person recognition can be a simple thank-you for a job well done. Immediate acknowledgement of a good job is a “major motivator and results in people feeling good about themselves and their achievements,” Ascent Group officials write. While peer-to-peer acknowledgement has its place, it’s important for CSRs to realize that their supervisor is paying attention to good behavior.