I was showing one of our Ozone headset sterilizing cabinets to a client a couple of weeks ago, when he suddenly understood the power of the solution and blurted out; “It’s like a washing machine for headsets!”
And it was a great analogy, and as soon as he understood that reference, he got the benefit of doing it straight away.
People wash things all the time and realize the importance of doing this. You wash yourself, you wash your clothes, you wash your dishes, you wash your car – and you should “wash’ your headsets too. They are riddled with bacteria and very infectious.
Imagine never cleaning your car. It’s not only about health & hygiene, it’s also about your state of mind. Think of how great it feels to get your car back directly after it has been for a valet. It smells nice. It looks clean. It makes you feel good and organised.
But when your car is dirty and messy, it can make you feel messy and distracted too. Besides which, it will also affect the lifespan of your car. The better you look after it, the longer it is going to last and the better it is going to perform.
It’s no different with headsets. If your agents have headsets that they know are riddled with bacteria and germs, besides their health, don’t you think this might affect them and their performance? Regularly ozone sterilizing your headsets isn’t just about the health & hygiene of your employees, it’s also about their morale and their state of mind.
Here’s a over-simplified breakdown of how our Ozone Sterilizing System works:
- Step 1. Your Call Center has an Ozone Plus cabinet for every 500 to 1,000 agents.
- Step 2. Every agent gets issued with their own headset with a unique serial number under the cushion
- Step 3: Every headset is captured on an online platform recording the agents name, team, team leader, and serial number.
- Step 4: Every agent also gets a protective headset hygiene bag, with a place to write their name and serial number, and to keep their headset when not in use.
- Step 5: Once a month, during a tea break, the agents in a team put their headsets into the ozone protective bag and give their bags to their team leader when they go for tea.
- Step 6: While they are on tea break, their team leader takes their teams bags and puts them into the Ozone cabinet (it can take teams of up to thirty headsets)
- Step 7: The team leader presses a single button and the cabinet runs a 15-minute cycle (the door won’t open while it is operating).
- Step 8: Team leader goes for tea
- Step 9: At the end of the cycle the team leader takes the headsets back and hands each team member their bag back with their sterilized headset inside, smelling beautifully clean, like a car that has just been valeted.
Besides this monthly maintenance sterilizing, the fact that the com[any now has a cabinet on-site means that there are four other key areas a Call Center can address:
- Safely & Hygienically recycle and re-issue all used headsets from agents who leave because of churn.
- Implement Health & Hygiene SOP’s that any agent who has been booked off work because of flu, colds, ear, throat, or chest infections – should sterilize their headsets before starting work every day for 5 days (otherwise they may simply re-infect themselves because their headsets are still riddled with the bacteria and germs from before they were booked off sick)
- Implement Health & Hygiene SOP’s that any agent who is even beginning to cough, sneeze or sniff at work, or any agent who exhibits any early symptoms of colds, flu or ear or throat infections, should likewise sterilize their headsets every day before they start work, to help them manage their infection and to help prevent the spread to the rest of their team.
- Allow agents to sterilize their headsets on their own initiative. I’ve noticed that there are always some germaphobes who want to sterilize their headsets every day, and having a cabinet on-site means that you can.
And just to touch on the investment required:
Being able to safely and hygienically re-issue used headsets, will generally save you the cost of 250 new headsets per year, per 1,000 agents (25% annual churn) – this will save you about R250k ($16,500 ) per year, and the cabinet only costs you R40k ($2,650) once-off (and it will last for at least 4 years)
But even if you didn’t recycle a single headset, a cabinet will cost you about R10 ($0.65c) per agent, per year over 4 years for 1,000 agents. That works out at about R0.83c ($0.05c) per agent per month over 4 years for 1,000 agents.
It’s not like I’m advocating buying a new car, I’m just saying that this is a legitimate way to make sure your car is valeted every month, and it pretty much pays for itself.
And I’m proud that this is a world first, nobody else in the world is using this technology in the Call Center, Contact Center and BPO Space.
This is a proudly South African innovation and a world first.