We are hearing more about hyper-specialists and networked experts as the future of employment; I want to add marketing experts or brand ambassadors to that list. Given the increasing strategic importance of contact centres that we have already discussed, employees within the contact centre have just as much influence on brand as marketing departments do – and this will increase in the future.
However, the contact-centre industry is plagued by employee attrition. Your investment in training employees and increasing their skills can rapidly be wasted by high employee turnover, and it is very expensive to hire and train new talent constantly.
Fortunately, there is a solution that is readily available. Older workers tend to show greater loyalty to their employers and have lower turnover. According to recent data, workers aged 55+ had median tenure of 10 years with their current employers, more than three times higher compared to workers aged 25–34 and twice as high relative to workers aged 35–44.
In addition to this increased loyalty, older workers have significantly more life experience that enables them to operate more effectively in customer-service roles. Broadly speaking, they grew up in an era where personalised service and human interaction were a way of life. Thus, many older workers naturally possess the communication skills, patience and warmth that customers – regardless of age – rate highly when interacting with your organisation.
Key to recruiting older workers is the provision of flexible work arrangements. These are needed because older workers generally want to maintain a work/life balance to ensure their work is sustainable through their longer working lives.
Research shows that 40% of over-50s would like to stay in their current jobs, but with greater flexibility in hours or days worked.
Flexibility of location is important to older workers. Many will be unwilling to relocate for new roles, so the ability (and empowerment) to work from home is an important part of part of recruiting and retaining older workers.Read more about smarter working for the ageing population in the guide here.