Call Center Hiring Featured Article
Length Does Not Drive Dropout According to Call Center Hiring Assessment
May 24, 2011
By Susan J. Campbell, TMCnet Contributing Editor
The call center is perhaps one of the most important divisions within the enterprise, and its leaders can also face the most pressure. Not only must they run an efficient operation, they must also be able to recruit and hire qualified candidates who can deliver excellent customer service every step of the way. With high attrition constantly plaguing the industry, there is an increased importance placed on quality call center hiring.
FurstPerson explored the importance of proper call center hiring in this white paper. The company offers web-based pre-hire assessments to help the call center manager to identify quality job candidates. This approach to call center hiring is gaining ground as an efficient method for identifying and hiring quality individuals. And, because they serve as objective assessments, they can effectively predict job performance and agent retention.
Call center managers are often playing a numbers game in their quest to effectively staff their centers. Their goal is generally to identify as many candidates as possible, which is why a web-based approach is ideal. Recruiting teams will often conduct large-scale recruiting campaigns to direct all interested individuals to a website to complete the online application process. This process often includes screening tools and web-based pre-hire assessments to efficiently screen for relevant abilities, skills, and personal characteristics.
Industry experts suggest that in order to identify those quality call center candidates who will perform better and remain on the job longer, the ideal approach is to measure as many job skills, abilities, and characteristics as the assessment will allow. There is no magic formula for the proper assessment to measure all predictors that are relevant in this situation in just 10 minutes. Instead, the call center manager may need to use multiple assessments.
By using multiple assessments, call center managers can measure specific capabilities. As a result, candidates may be required to complete multiple online assessments that could take as long as 90 minutes. Extending out the assessment process could lead to increased numbers of candidates dropping out of the process, according to many hiring agents who believe that testing length is inversely related to completion rates. In other words, the longer the assessment process, the higher the percentage of candidates who will tire of the assessments and drop out. This could cause the company to miss out on a mission-critical talent.
FurstPerson wanted to test this theory to determine if testing rates really caused the call center to lose out on quality candidates. In testing completed, the overall test time was reduced from 75 minutes to 45 minutes. In two different scenarios, testing dropout was not reduced, demonstrating that test length alone does not eliminate quality talent. Those in the position of driving call center hiring should focus their efforts on quality assessments, regardless of length.
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Susan J. Campbell is a contributing editor for TMCnet and has also written for eastbiz.com. To read more of Susan’s articles, please visit her columnist page.
Edited by John Lahtinen
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