This three-part series explores the importance of call center training and the benefits it can have for any company. The first blog in this series shares how to improve communication skills and other vital soft skills with better agent training. The second blog demonstrates how call center teams can improve customer satisfaction. Lastly, the third blog discusses the importance of sharing product knowledge throughout the training process. We hope these posts help you build a customer service training program that leads your team to Better Work. Enjoy!
Imagine, you receive an incorrect bill so you have to make that dreaded phone call to the customer service department. You have to schedule the day around it, knowing it will take more than 30 minutes. It may even take multiple calls to resolve the issue which leads to frustration and the threat to cancel your service. Unfortunately, this isn’t difficult to imagine, as it’s a situation that the majority of us have experienced.
This scenario isn’t just terrible for customers, it’s also a nightmare for brands. The fact that one call can win or lose a customer is proof of the culture we live in. Customer service reviews and brand competitors are accessible in seconds. Now more than ever, consumers pay close attention to their experience and aren’t afraid to move to another service provider when things don’t go their way.
Knowing this, how can brands turn their agents who work in contact centers into customer experience specialists and brand ambassadors?
The answer is simple: better-trained agents who lead to increased customer satisfaction and brand loyalty.
The current state of contact center training
A typical training process often includes two to six weeks of classroom and in-person training courses. Then, call center agents spend even more time shadowing other team members before they can actually get on the phone. And, despite technological advances, many call centers actually create binders that store all of their training information. This long, drawn-out process lends itself to unproductive agents and high turnover. In fact, agent turnover for large call centers is as high as 49% annually.
Contact center executives expect the use of chat, messaging, chatbots, and text to grow from 6% to 16% by 2019. Now it’s important for call centers to be just as responsive on new channels as they are on the phone. This adds to the amount of information that reps need to know, making it harder for them to become experts. Instead of equipping agents with that binder full of generic call scripts, leaders need to look for a better way.
Never fear, a solution is here
Call center agent training shouldn’t be this difficult or take this long. Call centers are missing training software to help them create bite-sized and interactive training courses. By switching to online training, agents can learn crucial skills in short periods of time. Because lessons cover one topic or skill at a time, agents are likely to recall what they learn. Instead of overloading them with too much information at once they can focus on the task at hand.
As service channels continue to increase and change, it’s also important for training to provide opportunities for dedicated practice. By choosing an online solution that offers practice scenarios across chat, email, and ticket handling, agents can hone their skills for every service channel. This is also a great opportunity for managers and peers to provide feedback in real time. The element of practice immediately reinforces what agents just learned and drastically decreases the amount of time they need to spend on training. This leads to faster onboarding, increased confidence, and ultimately, exceptional agent performance.
Once agents get through essential skills training, the tool can also be used for ongoing training that focuses on soft skills and problem-solving methods. This continued learning path is key to creating subject-matter experts across teams. High-performing teams also make training content searchable and available to agents when and where they need it. Instead, of placing a customer on hold for long periods of time, they can quickly find the answer they need. This results in improved first-contact resolution rates, lower hold times, and improved NPS metrics. Additionally, when agents are equipped with important work knowledge and essential skills, they feel more appreciated and empowered to become a positive reflection of your brand.
Customer experience is a defining indicator of brand loyalty. Companies that want to elevate these experience should start with their customer service representatives. By making investments in agent training they’ll become your best and most valuable brand ambassador.
World-class customer service teams use Lessonly to Do Better Work
Lessonly is powerfully simple training software that helps customer service teams learn, practice, and perform like never before. Managers and trainers deliver effective onboarding, proving ongoing training, and share best practices. The results? Effective team learning, happier employees, and extraordinary experiences. Learn more and demo Lessonly today.