The training of contact center agents has taken on a life of its own over the past decade.  Front-line agents are, after all, at the heart of any CX value proposition, and increasingly they are being asked to manage more complex consumer demands.  The ability for a provider to seamlessly navigate and resolve these interactions is predicated on front line staff that is knowledgeable, skilled, and confident.  It is in this spirit that global CX services provider Teleperformance has developed a gamification-driven training mechanism that cultivates an expert and tech savvy workforce.  This is crucial not only in ensuring the best outcomes for end-users but also for agent retention.

Gamification still confounds many contact center operators.  It is one of those offerings that means different things to different executives, each of whom has their own idea on how it can be applied.  Some of this has to do with the nebulous nature of gamification as a concept.  However, its application has tremendous potential across various aspects of customer management.

Training is a prime candidate for its use, and in this regard Teleperformance has developed some practical approaches in how gamification can be leveraged. A number of these were laid out in a recent briefing held by Teleperformance for the CX analyst community.  At its core, the Teleperformance gamification training offering emerges out of the recognition that people learn very differently today than how they may have done so in the past.  This is especially the case in the contact center agent demographic, which is heavily predisposed to go digital in order to satisfy intellectual curiosities (podcasts, blogs, videos and videogames are among their most favored content mediums).

Teleperformance’s gamification offering embraces digitally-driven training as a means of adapting to the evolving learning requirements of its employees.  The gamification element is tailored to different functions, clients, and industries, all based on data sets that indicate potential performance or behavioral gaps.  By playing strategically-crafted games, prospective and existing agents secure the knowledge they need to meet and exceed end-user expectations, whether using voice or digital channels.  To date, Teleperformance’s results show that this approach succeeds in improving performance among front-line team members.

These results are not only important from the perspective of driving consumer satisfaction; it also counts in terms of ensuring agent retention, which is especially challenging in the current tight labor market. No one should underestimate the willingness of a front-line worker to remain in their role if they are succeeding in delivering great results.  Much of this capacity comes from training. And what Teleperformance is showing with its gamification approach is that onboarding skills can be done in a fun, interactive fashion that rapidly optimizes performance.  For agents, this is vastly more engaging than sitting through endless instructional sessions, reminiscent of the   economics lecture from Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, in which key learnings are likely to be forgotten in short order.

However to be successful, BPOs must position gamification in a concise and easily understood manner for clients. It is noted that in the 2021 Front Office Omnibus Survey published by Ryan Strategic Advisory, enterprise CX buyers prize this offering.  In fact, across North America, Australia, and Western Europe, roughly half of captive operators indicated that demand for gamification in their contact centers will likely increase this year. In the UK and Australia, gamification is seen as an especially strong competitive advantage for outsourcing players to bring to the CX table.

For forward-looking BPO operators, harnessing gamification in a manner that permits a prospective client to see immediate value will prove the importance of investing in these solutions.  The Teleperformance approach to gamification for agent training demonstrates this.

Image sourced from Jernej Furman under creative commons licensing