Inconsistency in the quality of your customer service is a real nightmare for your customers and your company: 56% of customers are frustrated with inconsistent experiences or treatments.
Getting marvelous treatment one day, and an unhelpful link the next day is confusing and disappointing. Moreover, it will have a significant impact on your customer satisfaction and business results. Raising the game of all of your agents, so you're consistently meeting your customers' expectations, is paramount to reduce customer churn and keep your customers coming back.
However, while it’s one thing for your team to achieve a high level of quality, it’s a whole other challenge to maintain it as your company and teams change.
Consistent product knowledge among support agents
Flawless product knowledge is one of the most crucial parts of your customer service that requires continuous attention. There are two challenges to keeping teams well versed in the product - constant employee turnover, and a changing product.
How can we teach new agents everything they need to know about the product and the company as quickly as possible?
Sooner or later, all companies face the need to hire new support reps - either because the company is growing, or because people are leaving. The industry’s employee turnover rates are high - e.g., 30-45% in US call centers, - so recruitment is a topic that comes up day in and day out.
Coaching has proven to be one of the most effective means of onboarding new staff. Assign mentors to newcomers and get them out of the classrooms and into real-life support action as quickly as possible.
You will feel a lot more in control of the situation if you conduct conversation reviews - systematic assessments of the agents’ interactions. Providing feedback throughout the onboarding process will help them get to the same level as other support reps in no time.
For example, PandaDoc reviews all conversations for new agents who have been with the company for less than a year. With CSAT of over 94%, they’re a great company to learn from.
How can we maintain a high level of product knowledge amongst seasoned agents?
The answer is the same: conversation reviews and feedback. For old-timers, peer reviews are one of the most efficient means for keeping their knowledge up-to-date, alongside attending product update meetings and keeping an eye on release notes, which are a must for everyone.
Systematic peer reviews are beneficial for both sides to improve their product knowledge, as there is always something to learn from each other. Besides knowledge sharing, peer feedback is also a great way of learning about clever workarounds and getting other useful tips from teammates that aren’t a part of standard training.
Tickets that pass internal assessments with flying colors are not just morale boosters for the reviewee; often, these are great learning resources for the rest of the team.
Consistent quality across support channels
These days, most companies offer multi- or omnichannel customer service. Keeping a consistent level of support across all platforms can be a real challenge, especially when you have dedicated agents working on different support channels.
How can we keep customer service quality consistent across all channels?
You guessed it - with conversation reviews. Internal assessments can - and should be - done across all platforms to ensure that they all provide help of equal quality.
Conversation review tools like Klaus help you conduct conversation reviews for multi- and omnichannel support teams. It integrates with your help desk software and provides a framework for assessing, tracking, and reporting your customer service performance.
If you aim to bring all channels to the same level, include conversations of all platforms in your reviews. Picking a random sample of all customer interactions helps you evaluate how conversations on different platforms meet your quality standards.
If you rate all your email, phone, live chat and other conversations based on the same criteria - e.g., product knowledge, tone, empathy - you’ll get a clear picture of the differences across interactions on different channels. With continuous feedback, you’ll iron out discrepancies in no time.
The bottom line is that you cannot fight the customer service inconsistency battle without knowing what is going on in your support interactions. If you want to bring your team to an unfailingly high level of quality, you must first find the areas where their conversations fail to meet the standards.
Once you get going with conversation reviews, you’ll find that it is not difficult to bring consistency to agents’ skills and knowledge, even across different support channels. As you pinpoint the areas of improvement, you’ll be able to quickly tackle them with proper feedback.
Are you ready for conversation reviews? Sign up at Klaus and see how easy it is to offer consistent customer service with regular feedback.