Work as an agent

Yoummday: Elevating Beyond Gig CX with Enhanced Quality, Assurance, and Expertise

The blog post explores the evolution of customer service delivery in the context of freelance work, comparing the "Gig CX" model to yoummday's approach.

Chris Hague
30 October 2023
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Over the past three years, the level of interest in freelance workers delivering customer service processes from home has dramatically increased. The pandemic started the ball rolling. Before Covid arrived, most customer service calls and messages were handled inside contact centers by employees on traditional full-time employment contracts.

Lockdowns and stay at home orders changed all that. Once the customer service agents started working from home it became clear that working hours could also be managed more flexibly - without a commute there is no longer a need to just work a single shift all day long. Not everyone needs to be full-time.

This move to a very flexible arrangement where the customer service agents are based at home, are freelance, and also choose their own hours has been called Gig CX by many within the customer experience (CX) and service industry.

Back in 2021, the industry analyst Gartner suggested that freelance customer service agents will handle 75% of customer interactions by 2025.

Most CX analysts have conflated this prediction to mean that 75% of customer interactions will be Gig CX by 2025. At yoummday, we believe there is another model that still works with freelance agents, but works better than Gig CX.

We call it the yoummday approach to CX - or just yoummday.

Yoummday uses freelance agents - we prefer to call them talents - based in their own home. They can choose their working hours and they don’t need to ever commute to a contact center.

So how does yoummday differ from Gig CX?

The first major difference is that, like most gig work, anyone can apply to work on Gig CX projects. Yoummday has a strong focus on quality. Yoummday only accepts about 8% of the talents that apply for positions.

Quality also comes from the onboarding and training process. Many Gig CX projects expect the agent to learn about the products they will support on their own time, or even to pay personally for a ‘mandatory’ training course. Yoummday is focused on finding people with the professional skills and experience that will complement the brand requiring customer support and then investing in their training and development - both initially and ongoing.

Gig CX is also very transactional. It’s not a service that is focused on long-term customer support. It’s more like supporting a retail brand over Black Friday and then coming back to help again next year - crisis management. Yoummday offers flexibility, but with a focus on relationship building and cultural alignment. A client using yoummday has access to a dedicated account manager, not just a login on a website.

The transactional nature of Gig CX means that tasks are usually focused on simple customer interactions. The scope is limited, meaning that a very specific customer problem can be handled - where is my package? - but it is harder to go deeper. In contrast, yoummday allows for a more analytical focus on touchpoints and complex customer interactions.

This all means that most Gig CX agents don’t see their customer service work as a reliable source of income. It’s a supplement to their main job. It’s something they do at the weekend or evening just to earn a little extra. Yoummday remains a very flexible process, but the talents see it as a main job. This leads to better engagement, reliability, and deeper expertise.

Think back to how customer service used to be designed and managed. Agents could not control where they worked, when they worked, or which brands they supported. Is it any surprise that traditional contact centers have always faced extremely high rates of attrition? Many need to replace the entire contact center workforce annually.

This more flexible era of CX allows agents to stay at home and avoid the commute to an office. It allows them to choose their working hours. It allows them to choose which brands they want to support. A fan of games will enjoy support gamers. A finance expert will enjoy helping insurance customers. Everyone has different life experience and skills that can be used to help improve service to customers.

This focus on expertise is important. As Artificial Intelligence (AI) just gets better, more and more basic customer interactions will be automated. Humans will still be required to interact with customers for a long time to come, but their role needs to evolve. Human agents need to be real experts in the service they are supporting - they will be answering the questions that AI and Google failed to answer. Hiring generic agents to work on any account just because they have a friendly telephone voice isn’t going to work.

Gig CX and yoummday are both better for the environment. All those customer service talents no longer need to commute to work and companies no longer need to maintain large contact centers just to handle calls. Both can also tap into new sources of talent - people that want to work flexibility and would never dream of commuting to work all day in contact center. This makes it possible for parents with young children, those with caring responsibilities, and those with a disability that makes it difficult to commute across a city to spend time in an office.

Gig CX embraced this flexible model of CX delivery, but Gig CX has flaws that can affect the quality of service to customers. To truly benefit from a skilled network of freelance talents, with the assurance of high quality service, requires yoummday.

Yoummday has all the flexibility of Gig CX, but with added assurance that the talents are engaged, committed, and truly love the brands they are supporting.

For more information on yoummday and how your business can work different take a look at our website here.

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