Customer service is an area of the company that requires agents to be agile, effective and, above all, able to convey a clear and unified message. To achieve this, they need to be constantly receiving the appropriate training from the company, always taking into account the personality and learning style of each of them.
If everyone is located in the same place, this process is easy. However, in recent years, teleworking has become increasingly popular and many companies now offer their employees the possibility to work from anywhere in the world.
In these circumstances, the major challenge is to train remote agents and frequently check that the productivity and quality of customer service is maintained, a process that can become complicated if some elements are not taken into account.
At Fonvirtual, we want to help you meet this challenge, so we have prepared some tips for training your customer service agents remotely.
Provides the right communication tools
Before starting the training of remote agents, it is essential to make sure that everyone has the necessary communication tools to carry out this process. In this sense, the tools we use should have a number of characteristics:
Because telework is based on flexibility, it is important that the company’s communication systems can be used from any location and with any device that the worker has at hand. The technology on which they are based must therefore be taken into account.
Protocols such as SIP, although they are based on Internet communication, do not favor mobility. These systems depend on the downloading of software (softphone) that we must install and update periodically on all the devices we use to manage our interactions. Thus, every time we want to manage our communications on a different device, we have to wait until the installation or update is complete, and the experience is not always satisfactory.
In some cases, it is even necessary to have a dedicated network, an infrastructure that connects the company’s communication systems to the company’s router.
That is why the best internal communication tools are those that use WebRTC technology. This is a 100% cloud protocol, which means that nothing happens on the devices, but that our communications are in the cloud and will follow us wherever we go without the need to install anything. We simply need a device to access a browser and enter our username and password on the platform. With these systems, training customer service agents remotely will be easier.
Variety of channels
Another important element that our corporate training tools must have is the possibility of integrating different channels (voice, chat and video).
Depending on the situation and location, it may be easier to use one channel or another for new employees to answer their questions. For example, let’s imagine that an employee is serving a customer call and has a question that he/she does not know how to answer. In this case, they can ask their trainer in real time for guidance via chat.
If only one channel is available, we may procrastinate and forget the question, missing the opportunity to solve it and learn for the future.
Send clear and unified messages to your team
In teleworking, the company’s headquarters are no longer the only place where we can carry out our working day. Now, any environment can become our office, and therefore, unforeseen events, misunderstandings or even lost information can also arise, especially when it comes to training remote employees.
That is why trainers must take care to send messages to new employees in a clear and unified way, ensuring that everyone will receive it equally. If this is not the case, we are at risk of affecting the quality of our customer service, as consumers will also receive conflicting messages.
At this point, it is important to clarify that as a company, we must ensure that our agents provide personalized attention, but always following certain guidelines and directives. Otherwise, the client may become confused about what they need or what the solution to their problem is, and therefore become dissatisfied with our company.
We must therefore have software for training our agents that allows us to provide all workers with information in real time. Ideally, it should give us the possibility to create groups and mailing lists. With these, trainers will be able to send messages that employees will receive on their extensions, regardless of where they work.
Create a collaborative environment
Unlike face-to-face meetings, one of the drawbacks of teleworking is the difficulty of boosting a collaborative environment in which everyone can participate and learn.
Therefore, we would like to recommend that you use systems that allow you to make video calls with the possibility of screen and file sharing and three-way calls, as these are elements that help to overcome this disadvantage:
- On the one hand, the video call allows us to see and hear any member of the team. This gives us a sense of closeness and helps us to strengthen the links with them. It also allows us to share a screen, a whiteboard or documents to support training.
- On the other hand, three-way calls allow us to add a third person (either the trainer or another experienced employee) to support the new team member.
Creating a collaborative environment in which all employees coordinate and help each other will have a very positive impact on the customer experience, as they will get a more tailored response to their needs and therefore increase customer satisfaction.
Oversees that everything is going according to plan.
It is not enough just to provide the necessary tools and guidelines to start serving customers. Training agents must be an ongoing process in the company and it is important to check that everything is running smoothly. When all employees are in the same space, this can be easy. However, with remote employees, this can be difficult.
Fortunately, there are elements such as the supervisor dashboard. This powerful tool will allow you to take very useful actions to identify possible points of improvement in your customer service:
- You will be able to view the status of your agents (if they are busy, absent, attending a call…), a very useful function for time control and to know the availability of each of them.
- You will have access to statistics that will allow you to know the length of the interactions, how many of them have been attended, the average time that customers have had to wait to be served… This will allow you to detect possible mistakes, orienting the training of your remote customer service agents towards their correction.
- You will be able to listen to certain calls to see if the attention given is adequate. In addition, in the case of chat conversations, you will have access to transcripts, allowing you to provide feedback and points for improvement to your employees.
- You will have the possibility to participate in the calls, either through the call whispering option, with which only the agent will listen to you, or through a three-way call, with both the customer and the agent listening to you.
In short, as we said at the beginning, training remote customer service agents implies a big challenge, as we have to overcome the fact that not all employees are located in the same place. However, with the right internal communication software and by following the tips we have given, we are sure you will succeed.