There has been much speculation but little hard data regarding the relative merits of large centers vs. smaller centers. Our research offers a window into the impact of center size on agent satisfaction, which is important given the attendant impact of agent satisfaction on culture, turnover and customer satisfaction.

Size of Center

Very Satisfied

Satisfied

Neither

Dissatisfied

Very Dissatisfied

Net Score top 2- low 2

1 to 50

35.77%

48.53%

8.51%

5.34%

1.85%

77.1%

51 to 100

37.72%

42.68%

13.69%

5.10%

0.81%

74.5%

101 to 150

28.08%

46.16%

14.33%

8.68%

2.75%

62.8%

151 to 200

40.68%

42.25%

11.52%

3.41%

2.13%

77.4%

201 to 250

39.79%

42.73%

11.16%

4.55%

1.76%

76.2%

251 to 300

27.93%

50.52%

13.79%

6.38%

1.38%

70.7%

Over 300

38.76%

43.31%

19.72%

6.19%

2.02%

73.9%

 

The size of center shows a wave pattern. The smallest centers have high satisfaction, which then dips to a low point in the 100 to 150 range, after which it recovers for centers between 150 and 250 agents. The largest centers then level off at a lower level.

 

Interpretation

Small is beautiful, but so is medium to-large!

Bringing experience to bear, we interpret the wave-pattern results as follows:

  • very small centers are personalized. People know and support each other. The family atmosphere boosts satisfaction.
  • The family effect wears thin after the 100 agent level. The operation is too big to feel like family, but is often too small to have the sophisticated technology and progressive management techniques that foster satisfaction in centers over 150.
  • Centers in the 150 to 250 range have the resources to provide the technology and the satisfiers that agents appreciate. They are also large enough to offer career-path possibilities.
  • This positive effect moderates a bit in centers with large numbers of people, which also have the highest levels of “Neither” respondents, who are ambivalent about their feelings.

The message for managers is that growing your center may have consequences for agent morale. The disadvantages of opting for constructing multiple centers as you grow (instead of simply growing in one location) may be offset by positive factors overall.

Managers would be well advised to be pro-active in monitoring and managing agent morale as they grow (or shrink).

My Agent Voices blog posts are the result of research on over 5,000 agent surveys conducted in North America. - - Bruce Belfiore 

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Topics: Agent Voices, Agent Turnover, Management, Agent Satisfaction, Center Size