Human resource issues frequently afflict the Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) division of the contact center, particularly with the advent of remote and hybrid working. The need to build people-centric companies has become more pressing as artificial intelligence (AI) takes center stage in contact centers. How can BPOs evolve team structures along with learning and workplace needs to ensure they are more empathetic, purpose-driven, and in tune with the times? One thing is certain—BPOs need to move beyond transactional value to deliver substantial and enduring benefits.
AI to Help Ace Talent Management
There are several areas that BPOs need to examine to drive better talent outcomes. 7.ai, for example, uses a unique blueprint called the ACE (Accelerating Consistent Excellence) framework to consistently deliver value for their agents and clients alike.
To become a people-centric, AI-driven BPO, contact center leaders must focus on the following:
- Hiring— Hire the best candidates for the position and match their qualifications to the client’s changing needs using a proctored, automated environment. What’s best? For a lifelike virtual hiring experience, use the metaverse.
- Training— Onboard and train new agents faster and upskill existing agents with comprehensive learning tools and processes:
- Use gamified training to engage agents via video-based interactive sessions.
- Push bite-sized refresher material to agents between calls to jog their memory and put their learning to active use.
- Use smart training modules, like 7.ai’s Think Watson Think, to hone an agent’s case-solving abilities.
- Compliance and Risk Awareness— AI can also enforce policy adherence. For example, an employer can scan random AI-captured images of the work floor for mobile devices. A violation of a “no mobile phone usage” policy gets the AI to shut down the concerned agent’s system access, restoring it only when they reach out to their supervisor.
- Performance Management— Leverage AI to track agent performance, highlight the areas for improvement, and provide actionable plans.
- Leadership Development— Chart out a career path and help agents move up the ladder with customized coaching platforms that offer assessment, competency measurement, and planned upskilling with clear transition timelines.
- Engagement and Retention— Make a culture where people feel like they belong and can grow. For example, 7.ai has several initiatives, like Specialized Account Training, Fun in the Office, Early Warning System, Smart Conversations, and Focus Groups, that have helped it achieve an 85% retention rate.
The Morphable BPO
The workforce of the future will need to be agile. Based on AI matches, the most suitable agents will need to be swiftly trained and redeployed with the client’s changing needs. If BPOs can be successful at this, then they can shapeshift in real time to accommodate the dynamic needs of their customers. To do that, BPOs will need to stay people-centered while becoming AI-fortified.
Contributing author: Ayush Misra, Vice President, Practice Lead BPO at 7.ai