9 Customer Service Training Ideas to Improve Customer Experience
February 17, 2023
Learning Tips Straight to Your Inbox
In this post:
Consumers have increasingly high expectations for customer service from brands they buy from. But failing to deliver on those expectations leaves revenue at risk. Almost two-thirds of customers believe approachable reps were the key to a recent positive experience.
How can your organization lead the way in providing outstanding customer service? By offering a range of customer service training that’s flexible, engaging, and interactive.
Discover nine customer service training ideas that give your team need-to-know information—without boring them with lengthy training documents.
Offer company culture training
Most of all, customers want knowledgeable reps who can support them in solving their problems. Customer service reps working in a negative company culture could be rude—or worse, give inconsistent and misleading information that jeopardizes customer retention.
Company culture training can include:
- Training reps on how to communicate jargon-free
- Practicing communication skills by avoiding the use of abbreviations at every touchpoint in a customer’s journey
- Personalizing the experience by greeting return customers by name
With culture training, however, your customer service members understand the values, beliefs, and behaviors an organization expects. Communication with customers is harmonious amongst everyone on your team.
Read more: How to Create a High-Performance Culture
2. Provide role-playing opportunities
Customer support is one of the biggest factors in running an organization. But companies are falling behind; 80 percent of customers believe customer service falls below their expectations.
To fix this problem, offer training that gives support reps opportunities to practice their skills using previous scenarios.
Role-playing is a fun, interactive way for reps to improve. It can help them find new ways to handle situations and improve problem-solving skills—especially if you’re modeling the best (and worst) ways to handle common questions.
Remember: customer service reps are speaking on behalf of your company. Role-playing strengthens their ability to think on the spot by rehearsing situations like:
- Tackling an angry client. Practice reflective listening skills so customers feel valued and heard. Practice using phrases such as, “I can hear how this situation is making you feel angry” and “I’m listening to what you want to happen next.”
- Admitting fault. Everyone makes mistakes. Use role-playing to acknowledge customer support mistakes and rehearse how you could’ve handled them better.
- Responding to a customer that speaks a language you don’t understand. It can be frustrating for both the customer and service rep to communicate in a different language. Role-play using multilingual customer service agents to respond appropriately.
3. Deliver product training
Expert product knowledge is the foundation for any customer service team. Sales reps and customer service teams need to know the finer points of your product to communicate its features and benefits, answer questions, and recommend the right solution for a customer’s needs.
Product training helps your customer service team become masters in their field. Only then can they deliver world-class product support to your customers.
Develop product training with WorkRamp and take advantage of training features like:
- Integration with your favorite webinar tools
- A huge library of off-the-shelf learning materials
- Customizable online academies that align with your visual brand
- Customer service training certifications that demonstrate employee product knowledge
- Fun, interactive content formats such as blended learning and asynchronous learning
Also, training service reps in your customer education academy can help them direct users to helpful self-serve resources for current questions and future issues.
4. Organize call shadowing sessions
Call shadowing lets new hires reflect and learn from experienced colleagues.
New team members can listen and observe how to answer customer queries and solve problems by learning:
- How to open and close calls
- Phrases and behaviors of experienced colleagues
- How to turn negative experiences into positive events
- On-the-spot solutions to common customer pain points
Most importantly, call shadowing allows employees to view the processes they are involved in from a different angle. They can observe and learn how colleagues handle situations and create a safe space to answer questions outside of formal customer service training.
5. Offer conflict resolution training
As uncomfortable as it might be, conflict is inevitable. What matters more is how you solve it. Learning conflict resolution skills is vital, as businesses lose $359 billion yearly due to unresolved conflict.
Situations can trigger emotions. And when emotions run high, stress increases and rational problem-solving is at risk. Conflict resolution training gives you confidence that customer-facing employees can manage and diffuse situations efficiently.
Create editable templates that cover a range of responses your team may need. Alternatively, use virtual conflict resolution activities (such as worksheets) to give customer service teams different thought processes when they approach a difficult situation.
By understanding how conflict arises, its effect on customer experience, and how to find a peaceful solution, conflict resolution training helps de-escalate conflict—and avoid unhappy customers in the future.
6. Empower customer service reps with crisis training
Not all customer service interactions will go as planned. Crisis management is a training format that provides flexibility when events happen beyond your reps’ control.
Breaching confidentiality, for example, has serious consequences. It can result in losing customer trust and loyalty, affecting your business’ reputation. As a result, your business could lose employees and future clients, and face hefty fines.
Crisis training gives the assurance you need to handle unexpected events. Train your employees to detect, prevent, and take action against threats with:
- Harassment prevention training
- Security awareness employee training
- Security awareness contractor training
7. Avoid saying no to training
Employee development should be key to your core values and business priorities. Continuous learning makes employees happier and more engaged, helping retention and cutting the costs of hiring replacements.
Listen to your employees’ suggestions for improving customer experience. They may come up with a solution you haven’t thought of. Even more, they’ll buy into new ways of working if it’s something they’ve played an active role in.
8. Develop soft skills
Soft skills are behaviors, traits, and social skills that help employees do their jobs better. Let’s take a look at training ideas that develop your customer service teams’ most important soft skills.
Emotional intelligence is the ability to manage not only your own emotions but also others’ emotions.
It includes identifying and naming emotions, applying those emotions to solving problems, regulating your own emotions, and knowing when to help regulate those of other people.
Team player attitude
Excellent team players not only understand their roles but the roles of their co-workers, too.
Customer service reps with this soft skill go the extra mile and proactively seek out new ways of doing things.
Help support teams to embrace change and thrive on challenges. Employees who don’t see failure negatively act as a springboard for growth.
Ability to take feedback
Create a learning environment that routinely encourages teams to give and receive feedback.
Listening exercises are a great way to hone communication skills. If employees can take feedback from colleagues, they’ll be better equipped to take it from customers.
Adaptable customer service employees can adjust to an ever-changing environment and easily shift focus. Build confidence by empowering your reps to come up with new ways of working.
Create a culture of testing new ideas and learning from them–whether they work or not.
A workplace that inspires active listening amongst employees has greater levels of trust and respect. It’s a powerful soft skill that prevents misunderstandings and miscommunication by listening attentively to customers’ needs and wants.
Your customer service reps’ attitude towards work indicates a level of passion for the work they do. Attendance, punctuality, and teamwork are all examples of work ethic you can instill by offering training to improve soft skills.
Improve hard skills
Hard skills are your customer service team’s technical abilities, such as technology skills or market analysis. They primarily relate to their expertise with equipment, tools, or software. They are just as important as soft skills—some 62 percent of hiring managers believe it’s crucial to hire for both soft and hard skills (and not prioritize one over the other.)
Certifications/training for various software used on the job
When developing new customer service training ideas, put together interactive modules that teach reps how to use the software available to them.
This might include guides on how to use:
- Your customer relationship management (CRM) system
- Call recording software
- Helpdesk or live chat software
Keep these certifications inside a learning management platform like WorkRamp. Not only can you issue certificates to prove reps have a specific level of expertise, but you can also make product training mandatory for new hires as part of your onboarding process.
How can an LMS help with customer service training?
An All-in-One Learning Platform like WorkRamp can make learning enjoyable and interactive.
Train customer support reps to improve the customer experience and response quality. Speed up response times with bite-sized training opportunities and make customers happy with a support team that can resolve their issues quickly.
Integrate existing platforms such as Zoom, Slack, and Google Calendar and build a complete, all-inclusive learning experience. Deliver customer service training programs across your workforce.
Use these customer service training ideas to build your team’s skills
Customer service training doesn’t just add value for your customers–it also increases sales and gives you a strong competitive edge.
Well-trained employees can address customers’ concerns at the first point of contact, which increases customer satisfaction and, subsequently, your bottom line. Offer a variety of flexible customer service training modules that keep your customer service team engaged and inspired to carry out the role to their full potential.
Ready to elevate your customer service training with WorkRamp? Contact us to schedule a free, personalized demo.
Complete the form for a custom demo.
- Unlocking Sales Success Through Trust & Culture with Lindsey Scrase, CRO, Checkr September 21, 2023
- A Practical Guide to Building a High-Performance HR Tech Stack September 18, 2023
- What is Sales Enablement Training and Why You Can’t Afford to Ignore it September 15, 2023
- Stay Ahead or Fall Behind: Leveraging AI with Craig Walker, CEO, Dialpad September 14, 2023
- Management Dashboard: Empower, Elevate, & Excel with Enhanced Reporting September 13, 2023
You might also like
How to measure the success of your customer ed program
Make sure to track these key metrics to determine the ROI of your customer ed program.
Learn how a customer education program can help you boost engagement and retention
An effective customer ed program can help users and have a significant impact on long-term business goals.
What is a customer education academy?
If you're like most organizations, you're always looking for ways to serve your customers better. But what if there was a way to not only keep them coming back, but also turn them into advocates and champions for your brand?