Article : Strengthening The Circle Of Hiring, Training, And Performance
If your Contact Center struggles with the costly problem of employee turnover, you are not alone. Following is a tested method to decrease the number of "mis-hires" and reduce turnover.
Phase One:Identify your strongest team members based on both quality and quantity metrics, and list their similarities. Did they work in customer service positions before joining your company? Do they have college degrees? Did they hold jobs while in college and/or high school? Do they have a specific educational background? Your goal is to find 10-15 potential success indicators.
Phase Two:Provide your recruiters with spreadsheets to track the potential success indicators for new hires. Also, ask them to rank the new employees from most likely to succeed to least likely to succeed.
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....ARTICLE CONTINUED Phase Three: Require trainers to track the performance of new hires during training. Based on these metrics, create a second ranking.
Phase Four: After the newly trained agents have been interacting with customers for a set period (such as one month), rank their performance again.
Phase Five: Compare the third ranking to the potential success indicators you captured for the group. For example, are the top performers all college graduates with customer service experience? Provide your recruiters with this data so they have a stronger sense of what to look for when interviewing candidates. If the recruiters' ranking was significantly different from the final ranking, ensure the recruiters focus on the proven success indicators in the future.
Phase Six:Look into potential discrepancies between the second and third rankings and discuss them with your trainers. For example, agent Jeff is a star on the floor but had a low ranking in training. Learn the reasons for the discrepancy. Perhaps assertiveness plays more of a role in your Contact Center than the trainers realize. Doing ranking comparisons allows the trainers to get a better understanding of what skills are crucial on the floor. As such, they can retool training to be more in tune with the skill set needed on the floor.
Phase Seven: Look at the three rankings per employee. Identify strengths and weaknesses per employee so Quality Specialists can customize Quality Coaching sessions for captured contacts. Also, provide this information to trainers who conduct ongoing training so they can identify individual training needs.
When you link performance back to hiring and training you strengthen the circle of hiring, training, and performance. Your recruiters will more quickly and efficiently evaluate applicants and your trainers will be better equipped to train successful agents. The numbers of applicants that you have to go through to find a successful agent will go down and retention will go up.
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About Marc Van Baar:
Marc van Baar is the Support Education manager at Blackbaud. After starting as a customer support analyst, he became a software instructor and taught clients. Mr. van Baar currently manages the Support Education team. This team is responsible for hiring, training, and developing Customer Support staff. Mr. van Baar is originally from the Netherlands and regularly speaks at conferences.
Blackbaud is a global provider of software and related services designed specifically for nonprofit organizations. Over the past 25 years, Blackbaud has achieved success by providing new technology solutions that help nonprofits meet their most critical challenges. Today, approximately 13,000 organizations rely on the company to help them raise money, manage their finances, improve operational effectiveness, and leverage the power of the Internet.
Published: Tuesday, July 19, 2005