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How Gamification Improves Customer Service

How Gamification Improves Customer Service

Aaron Moncreiff


Customer Service can be tough. Gamification can help.

Customer service is a tough job, and it can be easy for your reps to get burned out—not only do they have to be thoroughly knowledgeable of the product, but they also have to handle a never-ending stream of callers, some of whom are inevitably exasperated. 

So it shouldn’t be surprising when a recent Customer Think survey found 70% of call center reps are often disengaged with their work. Or that, according to Mercer, a full 27% of rookie agents will quit before their first year with the firm is up. 

Gamification can help improve morale and retention by letting you build a custom array of incentives that quantify and reward quality customer service interactions. The right set of metrics will improve retention by promoting professional development and encouraging teamwork. Transform customer service from an isolating, unrewarding job to an engaging, collaborative profession with clear pathways for advancement through gamification.

Quantifying the Personal Touch

Attempts to introduce traditional incentive structures into the Customer Service Department often miss the mark. If you’re rewarding call throughput, your reps will have every incentive to rush through calls and hurry customers through superficial solutions that don’t resolve the real issues. 

Call centers often try to circumvent this by instituting post-call surveys, or penalizing agents whose customers end up calling back. But this can backfire, too: Anyone who’s worked in a call center knows that some customers will be difficult to satisfy, and some issues naturally take a few attempts to fully resolve. 

But unhappy customers and customers with complex problems are still customers. You want your reps to be providing them with extra attention, not trying to get them off the line as quickly as possible, hoping the queue will serve up an easier ticket. 

Gamification solves the problem of perverse incentives by letting you build an array of custom rewards. The platform lets you evaluate your reps on multiple dimensions of performance, providing a more nuanced view: you’ll be able to score interactions by duration, customer reviews, and ticket history. You can also allow reps to score themselves—it can be useful to compare your representative’s impression of the call against the customer’s feedback. 

Having multiple performance metrics will give you insights into what’s working, as well as identifying each individual rep’s areas for improvement. You may discover that the link between call duration and customer satisfaction is stronger for some reps than others, or that some team members are doing a better job of solving specific sets of issues. Nitro’s granular data will allow you to spread the team’s strengths and improve everyone’s performance.

Bringing the Team Together

Gamification not only provides data that shows what’s working best; the Bunchball Nitro platform will also help you cultivate a team-centered workplace, where the strongest customer service reps are rewarded for helping their colleagues improve their performance. 

Nitro can help you pair up reps with complimentary skills—you may have one team member who is highly knowledgeable and efficient, while another is more patient, with stronger communication skills. The platform can make them accountable for improving one another’s performance, setting up a peer-coaching relationship that fosters excellence. 

The Bunchball platform also enables a 360 review process, which allows team members to elevate the colleagues who are contributing to the department’s success. Your representatives are aware of who their most competent colleagues are, but too often, there’s no way to translate their appreciation into material rewards. Nitro changes that, letting team members recognize one another’s contributions with points and special badges that can turn into real-world bonuses and promotions.

Levelling Up

Finally, gamification can improve customer service by clarifying representatives’ professional development objectives and rewarding them for each incremental step towards achieving their goals. The platform allows employees to publicly announce their development objectives and provides incentives and recognition when they make progress. 

Emphasizing development and advancement can really set your department apart from the competition—instead of a grinding dead-end job, working as a customer service representative at your company will become an avenue for mastering new skills and earning certifications. Workers who see themselves rising above the crowd will be more motivated in their daily tasks—and more likely to stick with the company.

Bunchball Nitro can give your customer service representatives the tools and custom incentives they need to improve their performance, coalesce as a team, and develop into accomplished professionals.

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