The Best Way to Train Customer Service Staff

From doctors to rocket scientists, the world's most important jobs require high levels of training. Why? Because they're complicated, and many of us depend on the skills of the people doing them.

When we think of the most important jobs in business, we probably think of CEOs and Presidents. But there's an awful lot riding on the quality of customer service. In fact, 54% of millennials have ended their business with a company because of poor customer service. 50% of Gen Xers and 52% of baby boomers have done the same.

Despite the clarity of these numbers, many companies still treat customer service agents as expendable. Even when agents are given the tools to offer better service, they aren't always given the training to work optimally.

The power of technology here is undeniable, but soft skills play an important role in excellent social customer service. It's important to know who your agents are and what kind of personalities tend to show up in customer service. But beyond that, a highly trained workforce is key. That's why Brand Embassy offers business training sessions with all new clients: so call center managers and teams get the most out of each other and their digital customer service software.

We work hard to make sure you capture trends as they happen, so you can respond in positive ways. Here are three of the most important training topics that any digital customer service team should address.

1) How to cater to millennials

It's important for both contact center managers and agents to be aware of the demands of millennials. This generation is already shaking up business, and they're poised to become even more powerful as they increase their spending capacity. Typically this will necessitate a shift in the way performance is measured in the contact center.

Old-fashioned KPIs like First Response Time (FRT) aren't attuned to the demands of millennial customers and that means agents don't have the freedom to offer the personalized service these customers crave. This requires a paradigm shift for most contact centers, as these skills need to be learned and implemented from the top down.

Key skills: Personalization, KPIs that balance efficiency and empathy.

2) How to manage customer expectations

No one said that customer service teams have it easy. The job often means interacting with complicated personalities in stressful situations. Add in the constantly increasing number of channels an agent needs to cover, and you've got a challenging job indeed. What makes it even more difficult is the fact that customer expectations aren't static: they change from case to case and they evolve over time.

Again, digital customer service software can only take you so far. Perhaps most importantly, it will give each agent a database of information about each customer so they'll immediately have a better sense of expectations. But it's important for customer service managers to be aware of ongoing trends in digital customer service so they can adjust KPIs accordingly. That's where business training comes in.

Key skills: Flexibility and real-time adjustments in service style.

3) How to humanize customer service

Human-centric customer service is only going to get more important in the near future. As customers have become used to the speed and convenience of digital customer service and now demand it, the formula for great customer service and experience is shifting. Millennials are already starting to expect the speed of digital customer service combined with a human touch.

The right digital customer service solution will take care of optimizing customer service, but there are also soft skills that team members need to learn. Whether it's recognizing the importance of a smile, even when the customer can't see you, or adjusting to a customer's tone and level of familiarity, these are new challenges for customer service teams, especially because they're taking place on recently adopted digital channels.

Key skills: Implementation of powerful CRM, sensitivity to tone, a willingness to connect.

Outstanding customer service means combining the speed and efficiency of digital channels with real human connections and personalized service. The future of customer service is powered by humans helped by technology.

We’ve designed our software to give you more information about each customer and to streamline the service process so your agents can work smarter, increasing efficiency in the process. And, because it’s important to train your agents to meet the shifting demands of digital customers, we combine our software with soft skills business training for every client.

We’re not talking about games and team-building activities. We’re talking about real skills you can give your customer service team that will help grow revenue and ensure solid ROI from digital customer service. Interested? Visit our website or sign up for a demo today.

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