When starting a new job, it’s common for new hires to face an initial learning curve. At a major telecommunications firm, however, new hires for a particular line of business’s contact centre had a history of barely meeting their performance targets during the nesting period. This was despite efforts to ensure that the new hire curriculum was holistic and based on optimised learning methodologies. Something else had to be done to help associates acquire the necessary skills and knowledge to deliver excellent customer support.
As a long-time partner that has helped the client optimise and improve the performance of other lines of business, we offered support based on our unique perspective. An assessment determined that limitations to the existing training exercises and course prevented learners from fully gaining the skills necessary to meet performance targets and provide a great customer experience.
More specifically, the obstacles include:
- Reliance on human team leaders and subject matter experts to participate in role-playing activities with new hires
- Inconsistent feedback from coaches
- Unclear data collection methods
- Less effective peer practice sessions
To overcome these training gaps, we worked closely with the client’s instructional design team on upgrading the training curriculum with TTEC’s RealPlay Bot technology—a proprietary technology that simulates real-life call scenarios where learners can practise communicating with customers and exhibiting best call guidelines and techniques. The RealPlay Bot inputs were synchronised with another TTEC solution—the RealPlay Sandbox—a responsive front-end and database that imitates the actual production systems and tools that learners would use on the job.
The on-demand nature of the RealPlay Bot technology allowed learners to immediately apply the skills that they learned throughout the day. Additionally, the RealPlay Bot analysed consultants' questions and responses to provide instant feedback based on their successes and weaknesses after each call.
The call scenarios that learners practised were carefully selected through reports and analyses sent by the QA and training teams, guided by the client's decision to ensure that top call drivers, e.g., inquiries about products and services, billing status, etc., were included. This data-driven approach further increased efficiency and productivity by ensuring that the learners were honing their skills with the most relevant scenarios.
When compared with a group that used the original training course (Group A), the group that had access to the RealPlay Bot and Sandbox technology (Group B) performed significantly better. Group B classes exceeded Group A's first call resolution (FCR) performance every week of their nesting period. As early as Week 1, Group B surpassed their FCR nesting target, while Group A classes struggled to meet the target at least once during the entire nesting period. In that same week, Group B produced a 6% difference, making it the highest across all weeks in their nesting period.
By the end of their nesting period, Group B showed employee Net Promoter Score (eNPS) results that were 20% better than the target (eNPS only became a focused metrics in 2021 which was why Group A data was unavailable for comparison.)
Learners and trainers had this to say about the new training course:
Trainer – Training Operations
“RPBot is one of best tools that can help learners improve their communication and active listening skills, especially for those with no call center experience. This tool will enhance their critical thinking skills and this will help their call handling skills. One of the features that I like most about this tool is it uses a real-life scenario that the learners will be receiving once they start taking calls. This tool can also evaluate the learners’ calls, it will highlight their strength and areas for improvement.”
New hire learner
“The RPBot is awesome. I could practice my communication skills. Even though it was just a Bot, it made me feel like I’m in an actual call…[It] gives us time to practice our pronunciation as we can see from the result at the end of each conversation, we can see what we missed.”