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5 Steps To Developing Great Contact Center Agents

It’s no secret that contact centers want to have high customer satisfaction scores. You want to give your callers the ultimate customer experience and avoid creating unhappy repeat callers. A recent article by John Loughlin, Andrew Anderson and Amanda Bell points out that sixty percent of repeat calls are the result of bad or unclear training or processes. In order to have high-quality agents who solve customer issues on the first call, the contact center’s training program itself needs to be high quality. The article offers the following five steps to create high-quality contact center training that will build world-class contact center agents.

1) Connect Quality Measures to Training Objectives

Be straight forward immediately with a new hire regarding company expectations and the importance of their role as a contact center agent. Using a vague term like “quality” isn’t enough; you have to explain the specific components of what creates quality. The article gives examples of components of quality, such as CSAT, accuracy, resolution and business practices. Once an understanding on overall quality is gained, the new hires can listen to audio samples of high-quality customer service from experienced agents. This gives the new agents perspective on what it takes to be a great representative and how metrics are related to their performance.

2) Use Stories to Make Training Relatable and Realistic

In order for training to be effective, it needs to relate to their experiences in order to make a connection and retain the information. A great way to make information stay with the agent is to share real stories about customers and their needs. This allows the agents to see how their interaction with the customers can have a real affect on their lives.

3) Use Repetition to Build Competence and Confidence

We’ve all heard the old expression, “Practice makes perfect.” Consistent practice is crucial to retaining information and training, but how people practice is just as important. In order to optimally develop new contact center agents, they need to train in a way that simulates real-life contact center tasks, technology and environment. This makes the first day of work easier to handle and creates a more fluid transition.

4) Optimize Side-By-Side and Nesting Opportunities

After practicing in contact center simulation, the new representatives should be trained alongside experienced contact center agents. This allows the new agents to get live experience while having the capability to hand the call off to the experienced agent when they feel uncomfortable or unable to help the customer further. After this side-by-side experience, the agents move onto the nesting period. This time frame is when the new agents work while being closely monitored by mentors to help them when they’re uncomfortable or struggling with particular calls. 

5) Use Data to Identify Ongoing Training Needs

After initial training is complete and the new agents are working on their own, supervisors can monitor performance statistics like CSAT and FCR to ensure the agent receives further training opportunities on areas they may be lacking. Keeping track of data also can help the contact center learn where they can improve their training. 

This blog post is based on an article by destinationCRM.com. To read the original article, please click the link below:

5 Steps to Building World-Class Contact Center Reps – John Loughlin, Andrew Anderson, Amanda Bell

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