Everyone has a dream to work from the comfort of their homes and this pandemic made it happen as most organizations had to switch to working from home.
I work as a Social Media Strategist at an HR firm in Lagos. When I was asked to start working from home, I thought it was a dream come true as I have always wanted to work from the comfort of my home. But things didn’t go as planned. You can imagine how I felt when I started having electricity challenges and some other unforeseen circumstances that affected my work productivity.
I am sure people who work in the customer service space would experience some of these pitfalls and maybe even more.
Customers would want timely answers to their questions irrespective of the obstacles you’re facing as you work from home. This is why having adequate resources is critical to effectively carrying out daily tasks/duties.
Here are 7 common challenges of a remote customer service agent in carrying out their duties effectively.
A noisy environment from a neighbour or household can disrupt your thoughts, making it more difficult to concentrate on the job.
If you are married with kids or have younger siblings, it can be tasking to get any work done as they run around, talk loudly, watch television, or even fight with each other.
2. Time management
One of the major challenges of a remote customer service agent is time management. Most remote customer service agents find it arduous sticking to a schedule or managing tasks due to constant distractions from different sources. Being the master of time gives a person the levity to work on his terms and effectively manage time.
Most times, customer service agents rely on customers’ nonverbal cues to understand their emotions. But with emails or phone calls, it is much easier to be misunderstood.
A customer service agent who has poor listening skills may have miscommunication issues with the customer. Other factors include tone and mood while speaking with customers. Also, the inability to use digital tools such as emails, social media and many more.
4. Work-Life Balance
A customer may send in a request for a product as late as 9pm and expect an immediate response. As an efficient customer service agent, it is important to ensure the customer is not kept waiting for an answer. Hence, you may have to work overtime to meet up with customers’ requests. It results in the inability to put a balance between your work life and personal life.
5. Failing to network
It is essential to network with other professionals of like mind to advance your career. But networking can become a challenge for virtual customer service representatives.
With your whole life completely remote and overall communication with customers or business partners now online, it can be hard to network.
6. Electricity Problems
Working from home requires utilizing digital tools which requires huge consumption of electricity supply. Power outage results in the inability to use these tools. This in turn affects your work and productivity as a customer service agent.
7. Unstable Internet Connection
You will agree that internet accessibility is key to your success as a customer service agent. An unstable internet connection will have an adverse effect on your productivity as you work from home.
These are some of the challenges of a remote customer service agent.
Customer service agents should put these challenges into consideration while they work around making the most of their work from home and achieving optimal results regardless.
Also, communication is key. Communicate to your line manager on any challenge you may be facing and how to mitigate possible loss of productivity.