Best Training Strategies for Customer Facing Agents – Pt. 1

ZingtreeTraining

In this two-part series, our friends at Impact Learning, share their top strategies for customer service agents. They provide fantastic guidance in their blog and improvements for sales, service and support staff.

Often times, when customers are calling into your contact center, it is likely because they require technical assistance, can’t find an easy answer to their question, or your system has prompted them to do so in order to complete a transaction. No matter the reasons why a customer chooses to reach out to you, it’s important that each customer facing agent is professional, knowledgeable, courteous, and can offer expedited assistance.

Training targeted specifically to areas of competency, efficiency and customer service best practices are all requirements to delivering excellent customer care. Training alone is not enough to account for consistent customer service delivery; the software that customer facing agents rely on is equally important. The technology surrounding CRM platforms is evolving and nowadays it is easier to stay nimble thanks to cloud technology. Another big change in software is the analytic capabilities that allow companies to incorporate some pretty nifty features such as customized scripts and persistent ticket tracking. CRM software that allows agents to quickly access shipping and billing information and can pull data about a customer across your communication channels also allows for better customer experiences.

If you are running software that gives customer facing agents an edge over your competitors who aren’t, let’s review a few training tips to take your customer service from good to great.

  • Knowledge is power. Customers are coming to you with a lot of product awareness but they still expect your company representative to be the expert. Customer facing agents should be trained about all the products and services they are responsible for representing, in addition to knowing where to quickly send a customer if s/he requires help or service from another department. Beyond product knowledge, training should also be comprehensive regarding the software/hardware platforms the agent is working with.
  • Professionalism matters. Training customer facing agents how to handle frustrated and irate customers is key for employee morale and lower turnover. If agents aren’t fully and properly trained in working with upset customers, you can plan on a revolving door in your contact center. That just means a strain on your bottom line! Customer facing agents who can remain professional, even when tested, will reflect well on your company. It is too easy for conversations that go off-track to go viral on social media sites, creating a public relations nightmare for your company. Training agents to remain professional whenever they’re representing your company should be on-going as there is always room for improvement.

Tune in next week for Part Two, and get more insight on training agents!

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