Why customer service agent training is key to contact center success

Employee training is vital to the success of your business, and studies show that people are eager to learn new skills. Eight out of 10 employees say they want more job training. In particular, 78% of customer service professionals say it helps them do their jobs better.

However, many employers aren’t delivering the technology training employees need, which can have dire consequences for both the business and the employee. 

40% of employees who don’t receive adequate training will leave their jobs within a year. When you consider that it costs up to twice the employee’s salary to replace them, the expenses of not prioritizing technology training add up fast.

Customer service agent training is vital to the success of your contact center and overall business. Below, we go over the current challenges contact centers face and how training agents to use various types of technology can help overcome those challenges as well as improve the experience for both agents and customers alike. 

The current contact center landscape

Contact centers face numerous challenges, which lead to poor customer service experiences that are detrimental to your business.

One of the most critical challenges for contact centers is high turnover rates. In fact, seven out of 10 contact center agents are thinking of quitting their jobs. Research shows that the average turnover rate for customer service is 45%, much higher than in other industries. 

So, what’s driving agents to leave en masse? Often, it’s a combination of factors. Agents are on the receiving end of increased customer rage and high customer expectations. For example, two-thirds of customers expect to receive customer service assistance within five minutes of contact. All of this leads to burnout and, in turn, agents quitting their jobs.

How customer service agent training benefits teams 

An inadequate tech stack exacerbates current contact center challenges. Here are a few ways technology-focused customer service agent training benefits your team:

Improve agent performance

A poor tech stack prevents agents from resolving customer inquiries in a timely manner and growing their knowledge to handle complex service requests effectively. 

Research by HubSpot shows that the majority of customers expect your company to respond to their inquiries within five minutes. However, that can be difficult if outdated device libraries or inadequate training resources slow down agents. 

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This can lead to customers being transferred between multiple agents or require agents to spend more time searching online forums for answers. As a result, many agents become frustrated and choose to quit. It’s a vicious cycle. Once a few employees leave, others tend to follow.

Increase employee engagement

The right technology can improve employee engagement and confidence which, in turn, enhances the customer experience. Agents that are disengaged at work are eight and a half times more likely to quit. 

Training agents to use new technology can improve their knowledge of various devices or software. This, in turn, helps them to do their jobs better by providing customers with faster, more accurate responses to service requests. As a result, these engaged employees become vital to reducing customer churn and creating a better tech support experience. It’s a win-win.

How technology training can improve contact center agent performance

Training agents to use new technology can be a win-win for improving employee engagement and the customer experience. Below, we go over how training agents to use specific types of technology can enhance your contact center’s performance.

The benefits of training agents to use AI technology

Training your agents to be comfortable using AI is critical to providing competitive customer service. You might think, “But isn’t AI going to put my agents out of work?” But that couldn’t be further from the truth. 

Yet, common myths about AI persist, leading agents and customer service departments from adopting this critical technology. While AI can’t replace humans, it is a powerful tool to help augment contact center agent performance.

For example, you can use AI to improve your agent onboarding program to onboard them more quickly and train them more effectively. Studies show that companies that use AI improve agent performance by 14%. You can also use conversational AI chatbots to help reduce case burdens on agents and decrease burnout. 

Why you should train agents to harness the power of virtualization

Virtualization, or the virtual simulation of physical devices, can help your agents resolve tech support inquiries more effectively. These virtual emulators simulate an actual physical tablet or phone. However, unlike physical devices, which can break or quickly become outdated, these devices don’t have to be repaired or maintained. 

Additionally, agents can switch between multiple versions of the same device, which allows agents to provide a more accurate, personalized customer service experience. Companies that leverage virtualization improve agent confidence while reducing average handling time and business expenses.

How to improve agent performance with remote video support

Live video support is, without a doubt, the future of customer service. Face-face video support streamlines the tech support experience for both customers and agents. 

One of the key advantages of leveraging live video support is the improved communication between agents and customers. For example, instead of customers describing to agents where their router is in their house over the phone, customers can show the agents the location through live video. 

A lot of back-and-forth between agents and customers is eliminated by showing, not telling, the agent about the tech support issue. Agents can then provide more accurate support and resolve technical issues quickly.

As a result, first-call resolution rates increase, improving the net promoter score (NPS) for both agents and your business. Improvements in NPS and first-call resolution boost customer retention rates.  

Customer service agent training is key to your business's success

Contact centers are currently battling against high agent turnover, disengagement and burnout. Customer service agent training focuses on leveraging new technology can be a critical part of your strategy to keep agents happy and engaged in their work.

By leveraging technology such as live video support, virtualization and AI, companies can ease case burdens on agents, train them more effectively, and help them confidently perform their job duties. 

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