Many contact centres underestimate the importance of onboarding agents well and the challenges they encounter. Contact centres must have a structured onboarding program to ensure staff absorb all critical information, including daily duties, customer service protocols, company policies and regulations.

If your contact centre standardises and develops a comprehensive onboarding process, you can ensure every new agent is provided with a structured plan and foundation to enable them to learn and deliver the best customer experience possible.

Here are 8 effective steps to onboard contact centre agents.

1. Create a Checklist

Managers should create a checklist with specific duties and deadlines for agents to be aware of, for instance, outlining all the work that is required or due by a certain day, week, or month.

An onboarding checklist should have all the information and activities that are required for agents to complete tasks, conduct calls, and provide relevant information to customers.

2. Communicate Core Company Values

Agents must understand your contact centre and its core values to create a meaningful workplace culture that drives towards achieving the company’s missions and objectives.

Did you know only 32% of organisations communicate their core values to new agents? It’s vital to communicate your core company values when onboarding a contact centre agent. By providing agents with an insightful understanding of the company’s workplace culture, skills required, behaviour, performance expectations and methods, agents can learn quickly and optimise the customer contact experience.

3. Introduce the Team and their Role

It’s essential to introduce new agents to the team and their respective roles within your contact centre. This introduction to fellow peers enables the development of a communication network that will assist in the learning and the development of that agent whilst providing support. Developing a strong team around a learning agent assists in successfully onboarding the agent to understand the company, workplace culture, duties, and expectations from agents who conduct similar tasks.

4. Interactive Learning

To create an engaging onboarding process for your contact centre, you should adopt interactive learning spaces to transfer knowledge and provide guidance for agents to comprehend all aspects of the role. Interactive learning is crucial to any agent development, as many require more comprehensive and engaging learning modes to grasp a concept fully.

Using interactive learning within a team can integrate a social culture within the contact centre and provide a learning method that appeals to more than those who can rope learn.

5. Train with Experienced Agents

New agents can work alongside experienced agents to provide on-site training and assign tasks. This method of training is often one of the most effective methods to learn and train contact centre agents. By onboarding staff with the support and experience of other agents, new employees can learn methods and other best practices that aren’t always in the operation manuals.

6. Review Performance

Once a new agent has completed their training, they can respond to customer calls and enquiries.

It’s vital to examine their approach and their ability to navigate calls. An early performance review enables new agents to quickly evaluate if they are heading on the correct path and identify early should there be any missed information in training. Constructive feedback is the most effective method for contact centre agents to improve.

7. Check Customer Satisfaction

Evaluate the performance of your new agents through customer satisfaction. Experienced agents and managers can monitor customer feedback received over an agent’s training and an agent’s early independent days to evaluate and build upon weaknesses identified in their training and onboarding process.

8. Expectations and the Power of One

During all stages of the onboarding process, it is important to set expectations and explain the Power of One. It is easy to think that one person doesn’t make a difference in a contact centre with lots of agents, but every agent can have an impact on the service level and customer experience.

In a contact centre, first impressions are everything, and when welcoming and educating new agents, you must establish clear expectations and the best workforce management practices to exceed customer expectations.

We hope these 8 steps help you onboard new contact centre agents and prepare the appropriate information, activities, and processes to effectively onboard staff into your workplace. If you adopt an effective onboarding process, it can reduce employee turnover from 44% to 14% and improve the overall quality of customer service.