CX suffering as research reveals shocking extent of service staff boredom

22nd May 2017

The connection between employee engagement and customer satisfaction has been demonstrated in a number of studies over the years. But new research suggests that the customer service profession is populated by staff that are not just unengaged by their job – they are bored to tears.

It is now two decades since the Harvard Business Review article ‘Putting the Service-Profit Chain to Work’ detailed research proposing happy employees = happy customers = happy shareholders. Since then, numerous studies have highlighted a correlation between staff engagement and service levels (and ultimately company profits), including work by David Ulrich, a professor of business at the Ross School of Business at Michigan, that demonstrates that for every 10% increase in employee engagement levels, a company’s customer service levels go up by 5%, and profits by 2%.

So the findings of a new report into the customer service profession by CV-Library should have alarm bells ringing. The study, which asked 1,200 professionals about boredom at work, found that one in four (19.6%) customer service workers admitted to feeling bored every day, with a further 29.4% claiming that they feel this way about their work on a weekly basis.

Overall, boredom afflicts half (50%) of customer service professionals, with a staggering 57.6% admitting that they have looked for a new job as a result of a dull work life.

When asked why they felt this way, customer service workers said that they do the same thing every day (27.3%), that their daily tasks are tedious (21.2%) and that they dislike their jobs (18.2%).

Earlier this year, a study by employment specialist Emolument revealed that customer support was the third most boring vocation, with 71% of staff bored, behind only legal jobs (81%) and project management (78%).

Lee Biggins, founder and managing director of CV-Library, says: “It is very disappointing to see boredom getting the best of customer service workers. With so much of our adult lives spent in work, ensuring that you get passion and enjoyment from your career is of paramount importance. Prolonged boredom in a job can lead, very quickly, to burnout, low productivity and inevitably a high turnover of staff for businesses, so it’s extremely important that each and every employee in a company feels engaged in their day-to-day work.”

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By PaulineAshenden
05th Jun 2017 16:18

As the research shows one of the main reasons that agents become bored and disengaged is that they don’t feel stretched in their roles. Technology can help - by providing them with information quickly they can focus on the human side of the interaction, building a bridge with the customer and increasing both their job satisfaction and the experience for the consumer. There’s more on this topic in our latest blog

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