“Excellence happens when you try, each day, to both do and be a little better than you were yesterday.” — Pat Riley (former NBA coach)
Launching a quality assurance program in your call center empowers you with a huge amount of performance data. You’ll use call recording, live chat, customer feedback, surveys and more to gain a deep insight into agents’ capabilities.
But what do you actually do with all this information you’ve gathered?
It’s simple: take advantage of it to help your agents achieve better results through personalized coaching.
Join us as we dive into the ways you can coach customer service agents based on performance data, why it’s important and more!
Get Managers and Team Leaders Involved
Before you actually start to coach customer service agents, establish who’s going to take responsibility.
Team leaders are naturally a good fit. They’re typically well-trained and experienced in handling their team, familiar with providing support on a daily basis. As they oversee agents’ work and have set a precedent for serving in a managerial role, they should already have a bond with their team.
QA analysts and team leaders will collaborate on creating coaching strategies, based on each agent’s specific strengths and weaknesses. The analyst can provide all the data the team leader needs to show agents where they’ve gone right and wrong, and how to avoid making the same mistakes again.
Managers may want to get involved in coaching too. At the least, managers must stay informed of what coaching is taking place, what its goals are and how it will impact the quality of customer service overall.
However, bear in mind that team leaders and managers require their own coaching too. Quality assurance in call centers has to include everyone to be effective — it can’t be restricted to service agents alone.
For example, if agents are failing to reflect the company’s values or struggling to engage customers as they should, could this be down to poor management?
Identifying flaws in the CX agents deliver can open the door to coaching opportunities for team leaders and managers, cultivating improvements at all levels of the call center.
Personalize Coaching for Maximum Relevance
Following on from the point above, coaching should be personalized. Just creating a universal strategy for all employees to try and keep the process simple will only be a waste of time.
Why? Because one agent, team leader or manager could have completely different capabilities to another. Forcing them to sit through coaching that basically tells them they need to improve in an area in which they already excel will only frustrate — and possibly alienate — them.
Make coaching specific to each member of staff. Create objectives and goals for them to meet within a given period. Allow them to focus on certain milestones for more manageable growth (rather than bombarding them with a roster of steps to take all at once).
Study Common and Distinctive Flaws in your Customer Service
Gathering data through quality assurance will highlight common flaws across your entire call center.
Agents could be taking too long to answer calls,leaving customers on hold for minutes at a time. Needless to say, this is a real pain point for consumers: a survey revealed the maximum waiting time people were willing to tolerate was 13 minutes.
Poor responsiveness will leave customers unwilling to use your service again, potentially affecting your reputation. After all, 88 percent of consumers admit to being influenced by online reviews — which means enough negative feedback could have a severe impact.
Identifying common flaws will help you see where your center’s approach to customer service is failing on a larger scale, while searching for individual flaws is ideal for narrowing in on unique weaknesses.
Service agents are all individuals. They all bring their own experience, skills, natural aptitudes and goals to the job, as well as their own drawbacks. In the case of team leaders and managers, their own faults can have a trickle-down effect, influencing agents and damaging the quality of your CX.
By tackling mistakes relevant to one staff-member during coaching, you can cultivate a higher standard of service overall.
Incorporate Agents’ Strengths into Coaching
When you find one agent, team leader or manager excels in one or more areas, try to use this as inspiration for others.
Let’s say performance data highlights an experienced agent is the most productive, achieving high first-call resolution rates and getting through more interactions than anyone else. What can others learn from them?
Monitor calls and live chats to see how they perform so well. Examine their techniques and approaches to engaging customers. Incorporate this data into your coaching strategies to help their colleagues (at all levels) improve their customer service.
Again, set goals and targets to help them focus. Track their progress and development with good QA software, and refine coaching to reflect changes in service performance.
Use Customer Feedback
Finally, consumer feedback is an invaluable source of data to inform your plan to coach customer service agents.
Not only does this identify where service agents are going wrong, but raises flags about potential management missteps. QA analysts can gauge customer satisfaction through surveys, post-interaction scoring and complaints made during calls or live chats.
Customer feedback is a reliable, honest way to assess employees’ performance. 82 percent of consumers have abandoned brands after bad service, and if your call center is doing something wrong, they’ll let you know.
Tailor surveys and post-interaction questions to gain a comprehensive insight into the quality of your CX. How likely would they be to recommend your company to a friend? If they had to score the standard of service they’d received out of 10, what would they choose? Is there any way they could think to improve the service overall?
Leverage this feedback to coach customer service agents with the consumer in mind. Make sure to get agents’ views on the customer experience and be receptive to their suggestions — they’re on the front line and have first-hand experience dealing with consumers.
Coaching plays a vital role in improving your customer service, and performance data serves as an essential aid. By studying agents’ work through call monitoring, studying reports, distributing customer surveys and more, you’ll have the resources to develop coaching strategies that have a tangible impact on agents’ performance.
This is effective for employees at all levels, from the newest agents to the most experienced managers. As staff improve, they can inspire and motivate each other, creating a culture of quality.
What coach customer service techniques do you use to boost your customer experience? Share your ideas below!