With the continual advancement of technology and development of automation, it’s no surprise that many businesses believe that voice-based sales and customer service are dying a natural death. However, this notion could not be more wrong – the reality is that voice-based services remain and continue to be critical and are, in fact, more important than ever before. Today’s customers are smarter, more discerning, and know what they want, so it’s the responsibility of call center management to devote resources into training and coaching agents to meet the demands of the customer.
Recent research shows that 86% of customers stop doing business with a company because of unpleasant customer service experience. As the front-liners of most businesses, call center agents are very much in a position to make or break customer experience, and, eventually, your company.
So how can companies effectively identify their agents’ skills and maximize their potential? Here are a few call center best practices in developing a “dream team” of call center agents in an organization:
Emphasize Understanding of Customer Base
It is important for call center agents to know as much as they can about your customer base and the reasons they call because it will prepare them to adequately meet their needs. To help them achieve this, provide them with various customer profiles that include information on their age, gender, marital and social status, interests, income level, et cetera. Call center best practices such as this will give agents a much deeper understanding of the individuals that make up your customer base, thereby helping them determine the best way to address customers’ concerns when they call.
Educate Them on Performance Metrics
Aside from having an in-depth understanding of your company’s products and services, work protocols, and customer base, call center agents also need to know the metrics that their supervisors use to evaluate their performance in order for them to do their job well. For instance, if your company regards first-call resolution as the foremost metric, then agent training should include a thorough explanation of first-call resolution, factors that influence it, ways to measure it, and its impact on the business. This information will enable agents to take a more data-driven approach to interacting with customers and enhancing the service they provide.
Provide In-Depth Training on Tools and Software
Educating call center agents on proper and optimal use of call center tools and software will increase their efficiency and overall performance dramatically. Collaborate with the IT Department on explaining and demonstrating all the tech that they use to perform their tasks, and provide them with manuals that will help them troubleshoot minor issues so that they don’t get flustered when faced with glitches while on the job. Enlist the services of a reputable phone service provider like TTI that will customize your phone system according to the specific needs of your company.
Training programs are such an integral part of call center management and should be updated and developed to keep up with the times. In order to build a team of top performers, you have to equip your agents with the right tools and keep them engaged, allow them to extend the level of service that you want for your customers.