Making sure that your customer service is going above and beyond your customer’s expectations can sometimes be challenging. Call center agent training is key for making sure that your agents are performing their best.
Anyone who speaks to customers should be trained and well equipped for any questions or concerns a customer may throw at them. No question should sound too bizarre or out of the ordinary.
Customers tend to lean towards businesses that will have a solution to their questions in the shortest amount of time. Because of this, customer service agents should be following the best practices for call center agent training to meet customer expectations every time they receive a call or email.
Management is well aware that call center agents need to be trained periodically in order to provide the best service to customers and be updated on any company changes. Regular training is necessary, especially if a new service or product is being launched.
With customer service, difficult and tricky situations are common. You are dealing with customer issues head-on, and are trying to find solutions in the quickest way possible. How your agents handle such situations is what affects your company image as a whole.
Best Practices for call center agent training:
Here are the 10 best call center agent training tips to improve your customer service:
1.Motivate your agents
Agents should always feel motivated to do their job, otherwise customers will notice the lack of excitement in their voice. When an agent does not sound like they believe in the product or service, customers won’t either. Trained agents who are motivated to do their job are more likely to motivate their customers. This provides an overall more positive customer experience. Customer service agents are not just selling a product or service. They are also marketing with their personality and creating a positive company image.
2. Have your agents handle calls during call center agent training
Although it may be scary for agents to handle calls when they don’t feel like they’ve been trained enough, it is crucial for the learning process. When they practice using real calls, they’ll know what to expect in the future. Although you can role-play a customer call beforehand, it will never be as valuable as handling the real thing. Customers tend to ask a variety of questions. Because of this, agents will then learn the correct answer to each question by asking their trainee. They will also learn how to use the call center software in order to answer and transfer calls quickly.
3. Praise your agents publicly
A good way to keep your agents excited about call center agent training is to praise their hard work publicly. This can be done by simply writing their name on a white board in the office and giving them a “shout out” for their hard work. Other call center agents will work hard to get their name on the board as well!
A little bit of in-office competition can be a fun and exciting way to ensure that each call is treated equally when providing exceptional customer service.
4. Create opportunities for agents to discuss their calls
It is important that agents also give each other tips and tricks for what works best.
Best call center practice isn’t just managers discussing with their agents. Agents should be able to work as a team when handling calls. By discussing their experiences, they can benefit from one another on how to handle each customer concern differently.
5. Have your best agents train your new agents
When an agent is new, they may be a little intimidated by training at first. However, if the trainee makes the job look easy and entertaining, the new agent will want to perform the same way. You don’t want your new agents to copy other agents who don’t deliver at their best possible performance. New agents will want to mimic their trainee, so offer them the best that you’ve got!
6. Tokens of achievement
A great customer service practice is to provide an incentive each month to the call center agents who meet their goals. Prizes, coupons or tokens for future drawings can help your customers become more motivated to reach their final goal each period. Knowing that they have a sense of purpose for reaching their goals will allow them to become more likely to get there. This can be done with call center agent training.
7. Use speech analytics to help identify training opportunities
Viewing speech analytics is critical for monitoring your call center performance. When handling a large number of calls, viewing trends and patterns can be beneficial in finding out what works and what doesn’t. This can help you rewrite your scripts to what works best. It can also help you improve your call performance overall.
8. Separate call accuracy from customer service performance
When viewing your call statistics, you will often view the accuracy of answered calls and correlate agent performance with their customer service. However, both call accuracy and customer service should measured separately. Although one agent may be better at answering their calls in a timely manner, other agents will be better at finding solutions and providing customer care. By keeping both categories separate, you can assist your agents on where they are lacking and train them accordingly.
9. Business Knowledge
Another key practice in maintaining an effective call center is by making sure all agents have an understanding of business knowledge. They should understand the customer, be knowledgeable on the services they sell, and understand the solutions they are looking for. This can be a challenge for contact centers, so it’s important to work as a team in order to build business knowledge collectively.
10. Always ask for feedback
After each training session, your agents should be able to provide feedback on what they have learned and what can be improved. This will help you better understand your agents, as well as improve future training sessions.
Now it’s your turn! What are your favorite tips and tricks for improving your call center agent training? If you would like assistance on how you can improve your call center today, feel free to contact us!