The biggest factor in improving call center results is to properly train employees in quality call center training.
Feeling a little lost on how to do so? Fortunately, we put together a useful guide to improving your business’ call center training.
Check out this handy guide!
Why Bother With Call Center Training?
It is important to have a level of understanding when it comes to call center training as a business owner.
You might think “It’s so easy, why bother training?” or “Why should I invest precious time into training employees that just have to call people?”
Call center success is based on several things, which include:
- Improving customer service
- Increasing purchases through calling potential customers
- Having good rapport with current customers
- Having above and beyond convincing selling skills
- Being a great people person
None of those things come easily to anybody, no matter how great of a people person you may perceive someone to be.
This is where call center training comes in. Educating and training your employees to be better at selling over the phone doesn’t just make your business look good– it results in revenue that will make your business successful.
So how do you train employees to be good at call center work? Check out this handy guide that explains it all.
Call Center Training For Your Fort Lauderdale Business
These tips are the best of the best in the call center industry.
Invest In Great Phone Services
This has less to do with call center training and more to do with the quality of the devices you are using to execute calls, but they do go hand in hand.
Investing in a service or product that delivers the best possible devices and phone plans to amp up your business is important. Quality devices and phone services will also make it easier for employees to deliver calls as well.
Before you begin training, take the time to evaluate if your business’ phones are lackluster.
There are several major needs that your call center’s phones should deliver, whether your calls are meant to sell products or provide excellent customer service or technical support:
- Auto reject
- One sided call recording
- Dial by extension
- Call hold
- Caller ID
- Extension transfers
- Remote monitoring
- Dial by name
- Distinctive and customizable ring tones
Train Employees On These Call Features
Don’t leave vital information out of your call center training. Teach your new hires (or present hires if you’ve decided to switch to a new phone service or product) how to use all the features.
Explain why each feature is important in their job and be clear. As always, be open for questions. Learning new technology is a pain, so clear and concise training is necessary when it comes to technical aspects of an agent’s job.
When you have just recruited a bunch of new employees, whether or not they’ve worked in a call center environment before, you’ll need to make it clear how important schedule adherence is.
Keeping up with a strict schedule impacts all of the call center and the employees within.
Take the time to make sure your new hires understand how important your schedule plan is to their job and thoroughly explain how the schedule works. It should be one of their top priorities.
Sitting in a room with a bunch of other agents watching a powerpoint presentation may be the easiest way to train, but it is definitely not the most effective.
To make sure you’re not overloading your employees with information that could go in one ear and out the other, break up training days with implementing activities.
These activities could be as simple as a demo of your phones or software. You could also consider more social activities in which employees have to sell each other on your product.
Don’t Be Deaf
To be a good manager, supervisor, or boss, you need to listen to your team.
Be very open from a human resources point of view and be readily available to listen to concerns or questions from your agents. Not only is this good HR practice, but you’ll be able to learn of any software or training problems that can be fixed immediately.
On The Job Training
Demos can be helpful, but nothing gives a call center training session the leg up it needs like on the job training.
On the job training is simple. Your new agents, after a bit of training, will handle calls for the first time with a trainer present.
This way there is more context for new employees. There’s nothing quite like hands-on experience, and this is a very effective way to deliver excellent call center training to new agents in a way that can tangibly help them learn.
Do Monthly Meetings
We get it– scheduling monthly meetings can be a major bore. Sometimes they feel completely useless, too.
However, monthly meeting done right can be the best form of ongoing training to improve sales and customers service. (And agent happiness, too.)
When planning your monthly meetings, implement these elements:
- Opportunities for agents to voice questions and concerns
- Review training techniques with agents and see if there are any areas of improvement.
- Implement on-site employee activities. This may seem silly, but they really do improve relationships and incentive between employees.
- Have a simultaneous potluck or free food event. This also may seem unnecessary, but we guarantee you’ll see more employees showing up for the monthly meeting.
- Bring up new changes within the company.
- Provide feedback to successful agents.
These factors will make your monthly meeting less boring, more fun, and more effective at improving your call center business and employee morale.
Nobody likes a job where they come in, do their work, and leave without any incentive to bother improving.
Have daily “shout-outs” to different employees that are kicking butt. Send emails congratulating and encouraging employees that are killing it that day.
Also take the time to be friendly and social. Don’t be the boss everybody hates!
Use Your Best Agents
Your best call center agents aren’t just there to deliver the best calls. They are also there to share their experiences, tips, and tricks for being successful.
Encourage your best-performing agents to take the time to train new employees, and provide incentives for them to do so.
Having your best agents train your new hires will improve the quality of the training you provide and will also provide them with an opportunity to go above and beyond.
Balance Supervisor Time
If you are utilizing a team of supervisors to train your employees, be sure to manage where they spend their time training.
New employees are likely in the dark about their new jobs, so they definitely need priority. However, your seasoned employees and top earners need attention too.
In order to properly recognize where there are improvement opportunities and performance issues, have your supervisors balance time with everybody, not just the newbies.
Be Clear About Etiquette
If the goal of your call center is to increase sales and not just provide excellent customer service, you will need to teach your new hires about the importance of etiquette when calling.
A bored, annoyed, or just novice call center employee will not pull in those sales. Be clear about the most important and effective ways to provide customer service and make those sales:
- Be very polite, friendly, and approachable.
- Get excited about the product or service you are selling.
- Learn how to keep people on the phone for as long as possible.
- Relate to the potential customer.
- Be passionate, accurate, and enthusiastic about the product or service being sold.
- Know all the details about the product or service and be able to answer questions swiftly and clearly.
Learning how to be “phone social” is very important in successful call center training.
Don’t Expect Employees To Know How To Improve
Call center agents, just like any employee of a successful business, need context to know how to improve their calls.
In order to see progress in your team of agents’ performance on the phone, you’ll need to guide them on where they should improve.
This, however, should be done gently. Have you ever appreciated a past boss telling you that you are terrible at your job without any context on how to improve? That is absolutely poor business and poor training on their part.
Use things like live call monitor and recording to listen in on your employees’ performances. Should their performances be poor, approach them in a way that isn’t aggressive or rude.
You want to keep your employees, and if they aren’t succeeding, you can help them succeed. Call centers are good money for agents, and they want to get better to keep their jobs. Aggression is not necessary– it is your job to be a good boss too!
Was our guide to Fort Lauderdale call center training useful? Tell us your thoughts and opinions in the comments below!