We’re hiring! Visit our careers site to view our openings.
by Erin Johnson | April 15, 2020
One of the most interesting things about the gaming industry is that gamers don’t behave like customers. Sure, they have no problem spending like customers, but their devotion and passion makes them more like super-fans.
Gamers have a lot of options, and when they choose to invest in a game, they get emotionally connected to it. Whenever they have a problem and they need to reach out to the game publisher, they can’t just be treated like the customer of an insurance company. A brand interacting with fans is a completely different proposition to just building a traditional customer service strategy. You have only to browse Kickstarter to see the difference, where, for example, Obsidian Entertainment raised nearly $4,000,000 from fans to bring a sequel to their beloved Pillars of Eternity. Or Larian Studios, who raised over $2,000,000 for the follow-up to their powerhouse title, Divinity: Original Sin. When was the last time customers raised money to open a new banking branch or furniture store?
The most important step to creating the best player experience is to ensure that the people on the customer service team are also fans. If a gamer starts messaging for help, and they are answered by someone who loves the game just as much as they do, then what may have initially been a problem becomes an opportunity to reinforce the bond between the game and the gamer.
Look at some of the biggest Massively Multiplayer Online (MMO) games out there. World of Warcraft has seen subscriptions soar recently. PC Gamer magazine highly praised Final Fantasy XIV Shadowbringers, calling it “the best of the bunch.” Amazon is launching its New World game next month and the rumors from the people testing the beta version are that it looks amazing. Amazon is also launching a first-person shooter called Crucible next month and the signs are that Amazon Game Studios is quickly going to become a major player in this industry.
Players in World of Warcraft have so far logged over 6 million years inside the game. EVE Online’s 2014 battle, “The Bloodbath of B-R5RB,” resulted in a monumental loss of spaceships, and grabbed headlines for costing the participants the equivalent of $300,000. Square Enix’s Final Fantasy XI raid boss Absolute Virtue took 18 grueling hours to kill. Players invest time, effort, and cash into their favorite games, so when they need help, they expect that the person who helps out is going to understand their problem.
But think about the complexity this presents to the executive who needs to design a PX function. Games are global so you need to offer multilingual support across various channels such as in-game chat, email, and social media. Besides, the team supporting the gamers has to have detailed knowledge of the games – they also need to be fans of the games.
This requires a completely different approach to recruitment for the player experience agents. You need to think about domain expertise rather than location. You hire people based on their gaming history, personality and culture fit. It doesn’t matter where you are hiring, so long as the people you hire make the gamers feel comfortable and supported.
For MMOs, this approach to gamers is critically important. Don’t forget this mantra – they are fans, not customers. When you are supporting more complex games then you need fans of the game supporting the gamers – it would be impossible to do anything else. MMOs have a loyal and hardcore group of players and the way you plan your support can either reinforce their loyalty or turn them away.
To speak to the example above, games such as EVE Online have built up an enormous fanbase over a period of almost two decades and continue to be popular. If you have a game with its own real economy recognized by Forbes, and that features 7,800 different star systems then you can’t afford to hire someone into a customer service team because they performed well in a bank contact center – first, they need to be a fan of EVE Online and then you can train them in how to support the gamers.
Our approach is very different from many others in the customer experience marketplace. We focus much more on domain knowledge, rather than just looking at academic achievement, and 95% of our team works from home. This means that we can support any language, any skill, anywhere.
If you need to build a customer service team that is packed full of fans of a particular game, such as EVE Online, Final Fantasy XIV or World of Warcraft, then the best approach is to focus on that skill first. What’s the alternative? Build a contact center and hope that enough gamers live within commuting distance? Forget it.
This work-from-home approach works for other industries too, but I can’t think of a better example than gaming – customers are truly devoted fans of the product. You need to treat them like fans, show them some love, and let them enjoy interacting with your team because it’s one fan helping another. Treat them like customers calling a contact center and you can be guaranteed they will find a new game to invest their time in.
After all, if you can’t empathize with my upset when the Lich King hasn’t dropped Invincible after 190 kills, why are you even representing Azeroth?
Account Manager, Mobile Gaming CX Solutions
I started working for 5CA back in October 2019. Currently, I’m working as a Gaming Technology Support Agent in Spain. My job as an expert on the products of the company I'm supporting is to offer support to customers and get them up, running and happy in no time.
2020 is set to be a blockbuster year for gaming. In particular, mobile games that don’t need the player to invest in a console or any other equipment. One of the effects of the stay-at-home and quarantine orders during the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic has been that people have needed to find things to keep them occupied.
The white paint lines on the road crept passed ever so slowly, like my life tricking away.
I tapped the steering wheel with my nails, trying to release the pent up stress and irritation while the radio mindlessly droned on. Then the tears came, right on time, same as usual.
When you look at how many people searched for ‘work from home’ in the past year, you see the chart soars in March 2020 just as many national governments were applying stay-at-home orders and quarantines to help reduce the spread of the Covid-19 coronavirus. This is no surprise. Every company that could possibly keep functioning with remote workers asked their people to go home.
It’s often said, ‘people are the weakest link in cybersecurity’. I get that and I agree that we must seek to minimize human-related threat vectors. But I believe that if we view our people, our teammates, as our greatest security asset, then we start from a position of strength.
Have you noticed how many companies and senior executives are now experts in building a work from home strategy? According to Malcolm Gladwell it takes 10.000 hours of individual practice to become an expert at anything. Have those 320 business hours since the 1st of March really made everybody an expert?
Across the world, business journals have been endlessly reporting of the heroic efforts of companies with large numbers of office-based employees managing to switch to a work-from-home strategy. This has particularly impacted the contact centers because they have a large number of people in a small area and this is no longer acceptable because of the social distancing required to keep us all safe.
For almost two decades, 5CA has been perfecting our work from home customer service model. The latest version, where we only ever hire agents to work from home, has been around since 2015, so it is clear that for us this is very much business as usual.
A few days ago I participated in a webinar titled ‘pioneering contact center quality working remotely.’ The title makes it clear what the focus was, but I was pleased to be joined by our Lead QA Analyst, Sylvia Mattl, and Derek Corcoran, CEO of Scorebuddy.
A few days ago I participated in a webinar titled ‘pioneering contact center quality working remotely.’ The title makes it clear what the focus was, but I was pleased to be joined by our Chief Customer Officer Rob van Herpen, and Derek Corcoran, CEO of Scorebuddy.
My experience with starting to work remotely has certainly been one of the very best opportunities I’ve had so far. It changed my life, for the better. I’ll gladly tell you the short story of how I went from an in-office agent biking to the station every day, to exchanging my bike for snow boots when I reached my new home.
Companies across the world are racing to get their team all working from home to protect them. During multiple global lockdowns citizens are expected to practice social distancing, therefore it is essential for companies to operate with as many people as possible working from home.
95% of our team works from home and we have been working this way for over 15 years, where we truly understand what it is really like to build a work from home strategy with a huge focus on quality.
I've been working from home for a full year now, and no working experience can compare...
At 5CA working from home is just business as usual. 95% of our team is based at home so we have been watching the sudden focus on work from home business models, especially for customer service, with some interest.
It sounds kind of obvious, but training and developing your remote workforce is essential to improving their skills and performance. It encourages them to be more engaging within the workforce of your company while working from their home office, which leads to happy, effective and great employees that are here to stay...
I saw the situation, and I went for it. 2014 was going to be a decisive year. It was to be the year I got laid off from my well paid corporate job and the year I decided to study Permaculture and reunite with nature again!
Because 95% of our team works from home and we have been working this way for over 15 years I feel confident that I can help people to understand what it is really like to build a work from home strategy.
A lot of people are currently being thrust into the murky waters of communicating purely via different apps. It’s dangerous. I’m Australian, and to me the perfect analogy would be diving head-first into a muddy river on a scorcher of a day.
Many management consultants and business experts are advising executives to move their workforce home with laptops until the crisis is over. What they are not saying is that this is now business as usual - the new normal.
Companies across the world are facing an unprecedented wave of disruption at present. One of the specific outcomes from this is that many people are suddenly working from home. Many have no experience working away from the office and so the business journals are full of tips on how to make it work.
Companies across the world are finding their business extremely disrupted at present and it looks like things may get worse before they get better. During this time there has been a strong focus on the need for people to work from home...
“I’m on break, it’s my turn to hold him!” This is just one statement many fathers don’t get to say to their significant other as they usually do not have home based job...
I have to say, the first time leading a team without ever being in the same room is quite a unique and unsettling experience in the first few weeks...
I have to say, the first time leading a team without ever being in the same room is quite a unique and unsettling experience in the first few weeks, but I have found that it makes you work a lot on your communication skills...
Workforce engagement is a buzzword. And like all good buzzwords, there’s a lot of hype around it, but something really valuable at the heart of it too.
Consumer support over any channel, in any language, at any time: 5CA’s successful contact center as a service is possible because we use technology to make planet Earth our talent pool...
Consumer support over any channel, in any language, at any time: 5CA’s successful contact center as a service is possible because we use technology to make planet Earth our talent pool. It also presents an intriguing challenge: How do we balance flexibility, productivity, and security?
Consumer support over any channel, in any language, at any time: 5CA’s successful contact center as a service is possible because we use technology to make planet Earth our talent pool.