In today’s competitive market, delivering the highest quality of customer service is a must, particularly for organizations that work with customers or clients on a daily basis and that have to constantly strive to meet their expectations. The contact with customers is established through customer service agents that clients turn to for help and answers.
This unique position makes them the most visible and important aspect of any organization from the customer perspective. Since customer service agents have the the possibility to influence customer perceptions and ensure that problems are resolved to satisfaction, it is crucial that organizations provide them with exceptional customer service training.
Neglecting the Customer Experience
Too often senior executives are focused on marketing, branding, and other areas of building sales without putting special emphasis on retaining the customers they already have. The customer journey continues long after a sale is made so customers expect companies to live up to their promises and provide continuing support of their products. Yet many companies, both large and small, fail to empower their customer service agents by giving them adequate knowledge and customer-relations training.
Frequently, the approach to customer service is to see it as a defensive strategy for mitigating complaints or negative feedback, not as a potential benefit that can bring many business advantages. Service agents are not expected or trained for a more meaningful role because policy-makers are far removed from the day-to-day issues that both past and future customers bring to the table. A failure to recognize and deal with these issues as quickly and honestly as possible damages the company image, whereas the best way to avoid negative customer reaction is to provide the best possible customer service.
The Importance of Training Customer Service Agents
Customer service agents often represent a company’s most under-valued and under-utilized asset. In practical terms, they typically don’t receive enough training and education to fill a larger and more effective role. When customers with complex issues or prospects with detailed questions contact a call center and reach a customer service agent, that agent won’t be able to help them effectively and may not even know what they are referring to. The result is a bad customer experience that’s likely to negatively affect brand perceptions and sales. Even if the quality and value of a particular product or service is exceptional, poor customer support can damage sales.
This situation can be changed to provide a more positive result through:
1. A shift in the company mindset to recognize that quality customer service is a priority.
2. Proper training and development to make customer service agents both more effective at handling caller issues and more productive in the interests of the company.
The potential rewards of building better customer service through professional training should not be underestimated. Agents with well-developed customer service skills feel a greater sense of commitment and engagement to both their company and their callers. At the same time, they can make a more favorable impression on the minds of current and prospective customers and use the knowledge and techniques they have acquired to improve customer retention. Customers are far more likely to continue doing business with companies who that deliver on their promises and handle customer issues quickly, professionally, and fairly.
The Right Approach to Agent Training
Customer service agents need to truly understand the situations that their customers are facing and try to feel what it’s like to be in their shoes. It is not enough to equip them with a call guide and provide instructions on how to use the technology. Any tendencies to “agent-centric” training need to be replaced with “customer-centric” training that emphasizes customers’ needs.
With proper training, customer service agents will not only be better educated regarding the company’s products, technology, and the processes they have to deal with, but they will also better understand customer expectations and the feelings and reasoning behind each issue that customers bring to them.
Personal experience of the problems and issues that their customers face leads agents to react in a more respectful and understanding manner, work harder to discover solutions, and develop lasting relationships with appreciative customers. This is vital to both resolving issues as they occur and for successfully managing and improving the handling of customer issues in the future.
Our company develops effective customer service training programs led by professional certified instructors who have acquired years of extensive experience in the service industry. Each training program can be customized to address your specific needs, concerns, and business goals. Our training equips your agents with all the necessary skills and knowledge to deliver exceptional service to all customers and positively contribute to call center performance and efficiency.
Training sessions are designed to be engaging and fun, and are delivered in person by our instructors. Our training doesn’t involve just sitting in a classroom taking notes. Training objectives are reinforced through internal communication channels to provide your agents experience in real-world situations. Your team will encounter, explore, and learn from various insightful case studies, discussions, and face-to-face interactions.
Our training is specially designed to emphasize in-person connections so that attendees can quickly and naturally transfer their newly acquired skills and knowledge to improve services and benefit your customers. Our methods provide significant returns on your investment by improving the company’s bottom line.