Self-service as a support agent retention strategy


As support call volumes increase and customer issues grow in complexity,  more customer support agents are experiencing dissatisfaction and even burnout. Many call center employees are being poached by competitors with the promise of more work-life balance through remote or hybrid work options, better technology, higher salaries, and more opportunities for advancement. 

On-the-job stress is one of the major reasons why support agents leave. According to a study by Calibrio, “Health of the Contact Center 2021: Agent Well-being and the Great Resignation”, two of the top three drivers of stress for call center agents were dealing with complex customer issues at 36% and too many calls at 34%.

Poor or little training is also often cited as a top stressor in support roles and a major reason for call center employee churn. While ISP and smart home product support agents may have an excellent understanding of their company’s service or product features and benefits, they’re not necessarily trained to deal with more technical issues like WiFi connectivity. This lack of training becomes even more stressful when there’s the added pressure of meeting call time and first call resolution KPIs.

Using self-service to reduce call volumes and agent stress

One of the ways ISP and smart home brand support team leaders are looking to ease the burden of call volumes is by providing customers with a self-service option. That’s not to say that self-service is meant to replace your support team. Instead, it’s an option for those issues that are more straightforward, allowing support agents to focus their time on more complex cases.

According to a recent study by McKinsey & Company, “The State of Customer Care in 2022”, more organizations are looking to self-service support solutions and technology to solve for high call volumes—an approach that’s proving to be effective as nearly two-thirds of those organizations that adopted self-service saw a significant decrease in their call volumes. Other notable numbers include:

  • 65% of customer care leaders cited self-service as a key driver of decreased call volume.
  • 24% are using technology to improve omni-channel and digital capabilities.

How to incorporate self-service as part of your support offering

For ISPs and smart home brands, a self-service option for problem resolution for issues like WiFi connectivity can go a long way in helping to reduce the stress levels for both your support team and your customers.

Incorporating self-service functionality can take on several different forms:

  • Offering a knowledge base or FAQs section that provides detailed solutions for common WiFi connectivity issues

  • A checklist that walks the end user through common WiFi connectivity issues (location and range of router, presence, and location of extenders, number of connected devices, etc.) and why these things matter 
  • A video walking the end user through the possible WiFi-related reasons for the product not working
  • self-service diagnostic solution that empowers the end user to determine the issue themselves. Instead of having to call a support team, customers can use a mobile app to gather data points on their home network, identify and analyze potential issues, then provide step-by-step instructions on how to solve their WiFi connectivity issues.  

Part of ensuring that you’re keeping your customers happy is making sure your support team is happy as well. Putting strategies like self-service in place will not only create a better support experience for your customers, it can also help you attract and retain the employees you need to deliver the best possible customer experience overall.

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