More and more people have higher expectations for customer service today than they did just a years ago. This, sadly, has led to increased stress for many in the customer service field. The increased stress for the professionals in customer service has prompted organizations to think seriously about what they can do to help staff cope with the added pressure.
Employee wellbeing is top of the agenda for both employees and employers nowadays, and the COVID pandemic brought it even further into the spotlight. As it was reported by the World Health Organization (WHO), poor health reduces national GDP by 15%, which is almost twice the 8% hit to GDP that the pandemic itself had. It is not surprising, therefore, that improving mental health has become a key focus for government and business leaders.
While various schemes to tackle burnout and stress are commonplace at many businesses, they still continue to play a prevalent role in the working environment. For example, research has revealed that more than half (58%) of employees have experienced some sort of stress at work, while 69% experience moderate to high levels of stress in general. These struggles are particularly prominent among those people working in customer service.
The global pandemic pushed companies to adopt a more customer-centric approach and customer service agents came under more scrutiny than ever before. Customer service agents’ jobs require constant speed and attention to detail, with their every move closely watched by both customers and supervisors. In fact, more than 65% of people have higher expectations for customer service today than they did three to five years ago, which has led to increased stress for agents.
So, what can customer service teams do to help staff cope with this added pressure? Well, AI-powered call recording and speech analytics can play an important role in helping customer service teams cope with increasing mental pressures at work and promote wellbeing for staff.
AI-driven Speech Analytics Tackling Staff Burnout and Stress
Incorporating the right tools in organizations is an effective way to help customer service teams cope with mental pressures and promote wellbeing, particularly by adopting AI-driven recording and speech analytics. Speech analytics, also called interaction analytics, is simply technology that leverages artificial intelligence to understand, process, and analyze human speech.
Modern contact centers use speech analytics to assess call recordings and transcripts from digital channels such as chat and text messages. Doing this helps companies to deliver superior customer experience and also deliver along with it happier, less stressed, efficient, and more loyal staff.
Through AI-driven speech analytics, businesses gain the ability to rapidly understand and process keywords, phrases, and terms. Advanced acoustic algorithms can now even measure and evaluate voice pace, volume, pitch, tonality, and other factors to determine emotions behind words, accurately capturing the sentiment of each interaction, which can then be used for training.
The same sentiment analysis tools that can monitor performance of customer service agents and help supervisors train employees can also work to spot patterns that might signify mental health concerns. These include repeated negative customer interactions, frequent silences, raised voices, and profanity directed at the staff member.
Capturing both sides of a conversation using voice recognition software used to be difficult, but technology has improved, and is now capable of separating the caller’s voice from the agent’s, enabling more granular analysis and allowing the true potential of AI to come to the fore.
By layering screen and video capture into the mix, the organization can also harness this data to build a complete and accurate profile of interactions between different audiences.
Further Enhancing Customer & Staff Experience Using the Cloud
Using cloud-based AI call recording for speech and voice analytics means that all calls can be recorded in real time, with custom dashboards to spot these occurrences either for one-off calls – that are flagged to supervisors so they can offer quick support to a staff member – or for longer-term trends that indicate a deeper intervention might be needed.
While recordings of negative interactions can be used to improve performance, it’s vital for businesses to also look at positive interactions, to single out employees for praise and to promote best practice. After all, happy employees means happy customers!
So, all businesses should focus on applying the right mix of culture and processes first and foremost to support employee wellbeing.
Effective use of technology will make clear the indisputable business and personal benefits agent wellbeing delivers. It is, therefore, important for business leaders to keep in mind that employees are the face of the business, especially ones that work in customer-facing roles. As such, it all boils down to this: if employees are happy, this will reflect on the service they provide to customers.