Chances are you don't pay much attention to office furniture. You should. Particularly if you run a call center.
Agent retention is a serious problem in many call centers. Turnover can be very high, which means a call center organization is continually spending time and money to recruit, hire and train new agents. Slowing the turnover – even just a little – can save money and time and allow call centers to keep more experienced and effective agents on staff for longer.
Obviously, agent retention is a multifaceted issue that reaches into many call center management and technology processes – quality of training and scheduling, the fairness of awarding vacation time and flexible working hours and providing interesting and variable work to agents all come into play – but call center's shouldn't estimate the role quality and comfort of the working environment can play in agent retention.
To furnish call centers, many organizations turn to generic office furniture provided by companies that simply don't understand the business of a call center. One call center determined not to make this error was outsourced call center services provider NOVO 1. Due to growing demand, NOVO 1 began looking for a new contact center location and chose a site in Holland, Michigan in 2010
because of the city’s available work force, low attrition, high education level, neutral accent and a state incentive package. A site fitting NOVO 1’s needs was located on the city’s south side in a large industrial park, and NOVO 1 turned to call center furniture provider Interior Concepts, because of their expertise in the call center market, to outfit the center with more than 300 agent stations, testing stations, break rooms, lounge areas, and administrative offices.
The floor plan provides an open and spacious feel and is designed to promote collaboration between team leaders and agents. Colors, lighting, and other features were selected to keep the space modern, fun, and light-filled — including a colorful 340-gallon saltwater aquarium and a gallery of large photographs of top-performing staff. Coordinating the furniture finishes with the colors and artwork, Interior Concepts was able to create an aesthetically enjoyable work environment.
So what kinds of things does a call center furniture specialist do that other companies don't?
To help with customer data security, Interior Concepts offers customized workstations that feature a locking area that secures the customer service computers: the home of confidential customer data. This makes it difficult for anyone other than IT technicians to access the computers. Since NOVO 1 works with clients that require data sensitivity, this feature added another level to their already impressive security measures.
In the end, Interior Concepts designed a new call center for NOVO1 that keeps agents happier, fosters better collaboration between teams and safeguards customer data. And all of those things lead, in turn, to happier customers.
Edited by Amanda Ciccatelli