Training and retaining your call center agents are tough tasks. While trainees find their programs 96 percent effective, tests after a month on the job reveal a different story. After one month, the manager reviews state that the trainee scores only 77 percent. The lack of quality training for call center agents increases attrition rates and reduces customer satisfaction to a large extent. With the backdrop of highly competitive businesses, any compromise on customer satisfaction costs firms heavily.
Our tips will help you improve your customer service training for call center agents.
Call Center Agent Training Best Practices
Table of Contents
- 1 Call Center Agent Training Best Practices
- 1.1 1. Empower your Agents
- 1.2 2. Explain why Schedule Adherence is Important
- 1.3 3. Use Customer Feedback to make Call Center Agent Training Guide
- 1.4 4. Handle Calls during Induction Training
- 1.5 5. Train your Employees to Connect Better with the Customer
- 1.6 6. Teach Soft Skills through Call Scripts
- 1.7 7. Personalize your Training to Meet the Trainee’s Needs
- 1.8 8. Adhere to POPEA Guidelines
1. Empower your Agents
60% of agents agree that their firm doesn’t provide the necessary tools that staff needs to tackle challenges. Your call center employees are as good as their tools. Hence, you need to ensure they have the right tools at their disposal to deal with all their challenges appropriately. With the right tools, your call center agent can ensure higher customer satisfaction through efficient single call resolution that improves the overall customer experience. So, take some of your budgets to incorporate technology like advanced analytics and artificial intelligence to enhance the customer’s journey.
2. Explain why Schedule Adherence is Important
When you train your new hires, ensure you convey how adhering to the schedule impacts the call center. Your workforce management team can explain the influence of schedule adherence on key performance metrics like service levels. Your new hires should also know about the various KPIs managers will use to assess their performance and how they can hit their KPI benchmarks. By communicating this information clearly, you set your new hires on the right path and encourage change in approach to aid customer satisfaction.
3. Use Customer Feedback to make Call Center Agent Training Guide
90% of customers want organizations to provide feedback mechanisms for them. A whopping 51% of all customers believe that most firms don’t act on customer feedback. Customer feedback is of utmost importance to a call center. After all, the primary purpose of a call center is to cater to customers and resolve their queries. Managers can use customer feedback as a critical tool to enhance systems and training procedures. They can also identify a pattern in complaints to address most of them effectively. For example, if customers think they have to wait for a longer time before they connect with agents, consider improving the average handling time issue and match agents through proper channels.
4. Handle Calls during Induction Training
Providing a few real-time experiences before ending the training is a great process. One shouldn’t alienate these processes at any cost. New hires practicing real-time call handling recognize their issues early on and adjust their approach quicker. No amount of role-playing can substitute the real-time process. Trainers should ensure their equipment is ready to take on actual call handling sessions and make the process a priority. Furthermore, recording this call for future analysis is a great way to improve on specific flaws. Your trainer can also spend more time to individually analyze these recordings with the new hires to guide them further.
5. Train your Employees to Connect Better with the Customer
The majority of firms believe customer service is a crucial quality scorecard factor. Agents should focus on their message tone and content to effectively communicate with the customer. You can train your agents to improve customer experience by building stronger connections. By providing excellent support services consistently, you improve customer satisfaction and retention efforts substantially. Agents can create meaningful connections by using empathetic language and positive words and subverting the use of negative language.
6. Teach Soft Skills through Call Scripts
Every call center should establish rules or guidelines for agents to follow. Moreover, your agents should know how to use them well during an actual call. A great way to demonstrate these rules in practice is by run call scripts with the new hires. A trainer can use call scripts to show how the brand expects them to answer customers during a real call. Additionally, you can convey the voice and reputation of the brand through these calls. During training, encourage your agents to offer feedback to enhance training material for call center agents.
7. Personalize your Training to Meet the Trainee’s Needs
If trainers don’t consider the level of knowledge, experience, or aptitude, the training may not benefit the new hire. Assessing a new hire to find out their level helps identify gaps in their skills. Once you understand the knowledge and skill gaps, you can customize sessions suited to that particular individual and save time. Your trainee will engage better and learn well if he/she finds every piece of information relevant. For highly skilled agents, a short refresher course can be enough to get them working well. Whereas average agents need an exhaustive program to carry out the same processes. This small tweak helps you spend your training budget better and deliver better results on the business.
8. Adhere to POPEA Guidelines
Train your staff better by adhering to the POPEA structure described below: –
- [P] Purpose: Define the reason for the training in advance.
- [O] Objective: Communicate the object. Further, keep stating it throughout the session and after it as well.
- [P] Process: State how you will achieve the objective in the beginning to avoid awkward surprises.
- [E] Experience: Comprehend your team’s experience level and rate them on a scale of 1 to 10. Based on the expertise, spend more effort towards the less experienced employees and groom experienced staff differently. Get reviews after the session and improve on constructive criticism.
- [A] Apply: Focus on the applicability of your training by asking recap questions, going through real-life case studies, and sales call scripts. End the session by finding out if they’re aware of the detailed expectations the firm has from them.
We hope our tips helped you plan your training sessions better and improve customer satisfaction with your company.