Collector - January 2021 - 48

LASTWORD

Remote Work and Employee Engagement
How to make sure employees feel supported from their home offices.

M

ost of us were thrown into the
work-from-home pool without
any warning, leaving us to figure
out how to make it work as we went along.
Here, Leslie Bender, IFCCE, CCCO, senior
counsel at Clark Hill PLC's financial
services regulatory and compliance group
in Washington, D.C., interviewed Hal
Trapp, director at Receivable Solutions
Inc. in Columbia, South Carolina, and
Jim Beck, COO at MRS BPO LLC in
Richmond, Virginia, about how to be
successful at working from home without
sacrificing compliance, the consumer's
experience or employee engagement.
Bender: Can you do a deeper dive into
some of the monitoring tools-any software
or other resources that you are using-
that you have, through trial and error,
found to be valuable in managing remote
employees? And can you also touch on not
just listening for quality and call content
but engagement?
Trapp: As with many companies, I think
that was a hard transition for us. You lose
the eyes on things. [In the office] it's very
easy to get accustomed to the idea that
I can simply walk around and see what
I need to see and monitor performance.
So, one of the early changes for us was
scheduling more group discussions, like
Zoom meetings and Go To Meetings. We
probably had more team meetings than
we've ever had.
It's a weekly occurrence now and even
if it's just 15 or 20 minutes, it's getting a
group together to discuss issues. It helps us
through some challenges and even common
technical issues-because of course, people
working from home don't get the same

48

hardware support that they would get in an
office setting.
We've stepped up our passive auditing.
Our supervisors spend a significant part of
their day simply listening to calls as they
work with a tuned ear, waiting for that offbeat
comment so that they can key in and listen a
little further. We're using chat features so that
agents can help one another and reach their
supervisors efficiently. We're using several
different communication channels to try and
keep people together and in touch.
Beck: Some of the additional things
that we have at our disposal that we use is
almost a Wiki system for agents to have
all their job aids and the things they need
at their fingertips. I think so often people
become historically dependent on asking
their supervisor or asking their neighbor,
'How do I handle this scenario?' All of a
sudden, when that's gone, we really need
for agents to be able to self-serve-but
also then to be able to have support when
needed for escalated calls. I'm always
having somebody on duty monitoring
the chat function so they can have that
supervisor when needed. So, we are really
trying to balance that: provide the tools for
the agents to self-service and then make
sure that they feel supported.
We did do a lot of videos in terms of how
to maintain our equipment. We have a place
where employees can go and see a video on,
say, how to connect back into our system.
The other thing that I don't want to get
glossed over that you mentioned, Leslie, is
about employee engagement. I think Hal
and I both feel that when you can keep that
level of engagement to the organization
for all of your employees, the better their

output will be. You don't want to lose what
ultimately makes your culture strong. So,
we've done things like contests and blogs
on quality. In fact, I just saw an email go
out that gift baskets are being delivered for
the highest quality collectors to their house.
So, we've really tried to create a level of
engagement. We put high school photos on
the blog for our employees and things like
that to let them know that there's something
that connects them back to a larger purpose
and a larger organization. And I think that
ties into quality and engagement. All those
things really tie together.
To listen to the complete conversation, visit
www.acainternational.org/products/thehuddle-10-21-2020.

Title: The Future of Remote
Employees and the Potential
Challenges
Participants: Leslie Bender,
IFCCE, CCCO, senior counsel
at Clark Hill PLC's financial
services regulatory and
compliance group, Hal Trapp,
director at Receivable Solutions
Inc. and Jim Beck, COO at
MRS BPO LLC
Air date: 10/21/2020

ACAINTERNATIONAL.ORG


http://www.acainternational.org/products/the-huddle-10-21-2020 http://www.ACAINTERNATIONAL.ORG

Collector - January 2021

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