Use IVR & Chat to support new starters & make training cost effective
By Rick Kirkham, 28 Dec 2018
I was working in a large financial services contact centre recently. I picked up on the fact that their new starter training programme was suffering from a high churn rate within the first month of new agents taking calls. Being curious as we always are we started to ask a few questions. We discovered that being a complex business, their training programme was 8-12 weeks long and after this the new agents hit the floor. They could be taking calls on subjects they had been taught 7-11 weeks ago.
This was stressful for the agents and led to some low quality call scores and poor customer outcomes. This peaked our interest and we started to look at the training programme new agents received. It seemed to us there were key stages that tied in with core reasons for the contact from a customer point of view. As we were already re-designing their -natural language IVR platform (self-serve acceptance rate were not as high as expected and therefore ROI was not being achieved) we thought we could help. So we developed a set of IVR routing based on reason for contact which was aligned to the new starter education programme.
We provided the ability for the IVR to direct certain calls to new starter groups and those calls would only be for topics they had recently covered in their training. This meant that rather than going through 8-12 weeks of training and then taking calls on all those topics. New starters could train for 2 weeks and then hit the floor for two weeks in the confidence that they would only receive calls on the topics they have been taught.
New Training Programme
This was done in 4 x two weeks blocks and meant that every two weeks agents would spend two weeks taking calls. These calls would be on the recent subjects and enabled them to embed the learning much more effectively without the stress of not knowing what call types they would receive.
Ultimately this meant call quality scores improved, agent churn rates lowered significantly and the overall cost of training reduced because less class groups were needed. This is a great example of the Customer Touch Point methodology in action, we think much wider than just your IVR, chat or automation. We find innovative ways to enhance your customer experience while reducing your overall cost of contact.