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According to a new report, 87% of contact centre leaders acknowledged that agents experience a moderate to high level of stress during the workday.

The International Customer Management Institute (ICMI) in partnership with Five9 released the report (Agent Apathy: The Root Cause of Poor Customer Service*) which reveals that contact centres tend to place the agent low on the scale of organisational importance. This results in detached agents and, ultimately, poor customer service.

Justin Robbins, senior analyst for ICMI said: “As the importance of the customer experience heightens, so does the role of the contact center. At the core of it all is the agent, individuals who, day in and day out, are the true frontline and the voice of our organisations.

“While our discovery that most of them are under-equipped and over-stressed is not a surprising one, it is unacceptable nonetheless. This report exposes the dirty little secrets that are holding a majority of organizations back and provides food for thought on how they can drive success moving forward.”

Further stats from the report show that 71% of respondents recognised difficulties with their systems and inefficiency of their tools as the top contributor to agents’ workday stress. Furthermore, 48% of contact centre agents support multiple channels, with 75% of contact centre leaders plan on that number increasing.

*Report findings were taken from, “The Modern Agent: Understanding Performance, Productivity, and Positive Results,” a survey issued to 404 contact center leaders by ICMI and Five9 in early 2015.

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