A Learning Management System (LMS) is a must for call center and customer-service managers looking to improve their teams’ performance, but what topics should your learning materials actually cover?
It’s not an easy question to answer, and there’s no one-size-fits-all solution. But while working processes and values differ from one call center or customer service department to the next, certain subjects remain essential for every learning system.
Simply focusing on customer experience isn’t enough: all aspects of work should be explored for maximum impact. And that means taking a bespoke approach to compiling a learning library of educational resources: creating a tailored learning program for employees across different roles keeps your learning system more relevant and valuable than if you were to just rely on a generic training process.
Let’s look at the most important topics for your customer service team’s learning library.
Strong leadership drives customer service agents to perform at their best on a daily basis. Without a team leader or manager overseeing them, employees could struggle to hit targets, work well with colleagues, make progress and leave customers unsatisfied.
Those in a leadership position can benefit from learning lessons as much as any other worker: they have a job to do too, but may not do it as well as they could without the proper educational materials. Don’t assume someone knows how to lead just because their job title says they do.
Good leaders in a call center or customer service department should be able to help agents resolve consumer problems, determine where team-members are going wrong and push them to work to a higher standard.
Your learning lessons should focus on motivating employees, providing constructive feedback, rewarding good results and managing relationships (for example, helping conflicting workers get along better).
Efficient Time Management
Consumers are busy. They have jobs. They have families. They have social media. They have Netflix. They have countless things pulling at their attention day in, day out.
And that’s why proper time management matters. Your customer service should be easily accessible, responsive and convenient — or they could go elsewhere.
Training your agents, team leaders, admins and even managers to manage their time properly can make a big difference to performance overall. For agents in particular, being more aware of time and the number of other tasks waiting to be completed makes them less likely to drag interactions out longer than they should.
Consumers don’t want to wait on hold for huge chunks of their day. They want to get the answers they need and carry on with their life.
Stress Relief Techniques
Working in a target-driven environment can take its toll. Research shows call centers have an average employee-turnover rate of around 40 percent, with stress playing a significant part.
Various factors can contribute to workplace stress in a call center or customer service department. After all, agents communicate with dozens of people every day, many of whom may be irritable and looking to take their rage out on a faceless person at the other end of a phone call or live chat.
You don’t want your workers to come to the office miserable and anxious. That’s no good for anyone. That’s why adding resources on stress relief techniques to your learning library is so important.
But don’t leave it at that. Establish an open-door policy: make sure employees understand they can speak to their team leaders, managers or HR about feeling stressed at any time. Encourage workers to listen to each other, to be sympathetic and to share their own ideas for stress-relief education.
Handling Challenging Situations
Challenging situations can arise from time to time in any job, and good training can help any employee overcome them.
In a call center, these typically include disgruntled customers with an axe to grind, struggling to find details of a previous interaction and technical problems disrupting communications. Your learning library should offer education on any challenges employees may face.
Whenever an agent is caught up in a tough situation that isn’t covered in your current learning library, create new content to rectify that. You’ll keep growing your customer service team into a capable, efficient unit capable of handling any obstacle in their path. And your customers will continue to receive the best level of service out there.
Being able to prioritize tasks is just as important as effective time management. While managers and team leaders may assign jobs to employees, agents have to be able to identify which tasks are urgent and which can wait.
Otherwise, customers could be denied the help they’re looking for and be left with a negative impression of your business. And with unhappy consumers telling between nine and 15 people about bad experiences with a company, poor task-management is riskier than you may imagine.
Your learning materials should encourage and inspire employees to adopt a proactive approach to their work. They should be willing to take the initiative and search for answers to questions themselves, even if that means requesting training from management. Again, an open-door policy is essential to ensure employees feel comfortable to do this whenever they need to.
Putting a learning library together is easier when you have access to a quality LMS. Trying to stay on top of which employees have received what training can be incredibly difficult, especially if you have an overworked, understaffed HR department.
Workers can end up without the learning lessons they need while others undergo training they’ve already received — a waste of everyone’s time and effort. With an LMS, you’ll be able to organize your customer service team’s learning resources efficiently, making it accessible to anyone who needs it.
Make sure to include lessons focusing on the topics explored above, or you might be denying your staff critical education. And that could impact your customers’ experience in a negative way, chasing them away to competitors.
What do you think the most important topics for customer service teams’ learning are? Share your thoughts and ideas below!