21.04.2021

Adaptation of contact center operators Part 2. Nuances in the interview

How best to interview new contact center operators, nuances and tips, adaptation of operators.

Adaptation of contact center operators Part 2. Nuances in the interview

We continue a series of articles about the adaptation of CC operators and sales managers. In the first part we talked about preliminary events, in this part we talked about interviews.

Interview tips: how to improve

Offer the applicant tea, coffee, water (especially for non-mass enrollment situations). I had a number of discussions about this, the director of one ACC voiced an objection: “It looks like a sect where they lure, they will not understand it that way.” But, in my opinion, offering a person a glass of tea is normal. I’ve been using this simple technique for five years now, none of the candidates have spoken about a sect. I always try to convey the content of the job to the applicant first . Even in Moscow, people do not always imagine him correctly. Option for contact centers: – Surely you are a cellular subscriber, perhaps a bank client, do you have internet at home? – Yes – Then most likely you have had a situation at least once in your life when you had to call the company that serves you: the Internet is broken – find out when it will be fixed, find out the balance in the account at the bank, find out from the mobile operator about connecting or disconnecting services, right? – Yes This “prelude” creates a clear context for the applicant: what could be more understandable than a call to the Internet provider if the Internet was turned off? (The scenario is universal, suitable for any market segment in which CC can operate). After the second answer “Yes”, the candidate understands exactly what I told him. This creates the necessary ground for continuing the conversation. Option for telephone sales departments (illustrate the general principle): – The ultimate goal of the company is to sell our product/service. To sell, you need a meeting with the one who makes the decision. The task of the manager is to obtain by phone a clear consent of the person in charge for a meeting in a specific place on a specific date. If there is no agreement or the exact date/time of the meeting is not agreed upon, the meeting will not take place. If, for example, you decide to meet with a friend, but have not decided on the time and place, you will wait for each other for a long time, right? – So – It’s the same here. We want you to get permission to meet at a specific location at a specified time. To what extent is this task NOT clear? – Quite understandable. – Then let me know how NOT this job suits you? You can not use “negative” questions “How much you DON’T like, DON’T fit, DON’T suit, DON’T match your expectations”, but I believe that they allow you to receive high-quality feedback from the applicant, show his doubts (and therefore allow you to work with them ) and in general create an atmosphere of trust: understatements are excluded.

During and after the interview

An example of how they usually do itAn example of how to improve
The candidate is given tests and verification tasks (sometimes strange from the point of view of the applicant), but they do not explain why.A feature of adult education: a person must understand the meaning of what they want from him. Therefore, be sure to explain why you give each task: Now let’s test your speaking skills. Small task. Ready? If you do not explain the meaning of the tasks, there is a risk of getting a response “they asked some nonsense”.
“We will call you back”.The decision should be announced immediately (the reason for refusing to find is not a problem). Approved people should know the start date of the training. Training should begin no later than the second working day after the interview: a longer time lag is a killer of the recruitment process. On average, the probability of an applicant leaving for training after 3+ working days of waiting is less than 10%.
There is no company tour after a successful interview, or it is conducted by a recruiter.The tour must be led by a current [senior] manager or future mentor or ROP or trainer. The plan and scenario of the tour must be approved personally by the General Director. It seems to be distracting, but what could be more important than working with people? The newcomer has the opportunity to look at the future leader. The fear “What kind of people work here and how will they meet me?” is partially removed. Let me remind you that the costs of attracting personnel are relatively high, and here only 5-7 minutes are spent, but the level of confidence of a beginner in the organization increases.
The candidate is not introduced to the team.In an interview, I say this: – I know from experience that applicants have a question: “Will they cheat with a salary?” (At this moment applicants usually smile and nod) The story is this: after the interview, if we agree, we will have a short tour of the sales department/camera room. You can point the finger at any employee and ask him any questions, including whether they pay wages on time and in accordance with the contract. Will it go? On the tour, we really give the opportunity to ask questions. If the applicant does this – a good sign. But if you hesitate to ask: – Colleagues, one minute, please. A new person <name and surname> came to us for an interview, he has a question about salary. Raise your hands who don’t get paid. – Raise your hands who are not being paid adequately. – By the way, the guys over there are sitting in that corner, Alexei Maksimov and Liza Chaikina, they are champions in fulfilling plans. They make 40,000+ per month. Colleagues, right? – So! – How about the situation in the team and the authorities? If the company is honest with its employees and the management is competent, the scheme works 800%. If the company is not honest or the management is not adequate, this manual is useless.
Beginners get acquainted with the trainer at the beginning of training.It is better to invite one of the coaches for an interview for a short 1-2 minute story about yourself (we remove fears about who we will have to deal with next: “the coach was shown to us, a cool guy”, we immediately show growth opportunities if the coach “grew up” from operator/manager). The scenario of the trainer’s presentation must be coordinated with the management, the presentation must be learned perfectly. If there is no trainer, a mentor, senior manager or ROP is invited to the self-presentation. Critical! This only works if the coach shares his success with the success of the organization. Critically Important-2: The coach must look not just good, but super great. Nuance: the recruiter and the coach must clearly demonstrate mutual courtesy and the style of communication adopted within the corporate culture. Life hack. After the end of the interview, we ask the trainer to reproduce the verbal portrait of the applicant (s). We train memory and attention – a very necessary skill for leading a study group.
Applicants are shown the work of real operators / managers, and in some cases they are “put on parallel ears” – to get acquainted with a live conversation.You shouldn’t do this, especially on complex projects with a large amount of information: the objection “it’s difficult, I won’t master” is activated. In addition, we can talk about the fact that a newcomer who has not signed an NDA will have access to personal data of subscribers and confidential information of the company. A good practice is to record a short (up to 2 minutes) video that shows the work of a manager step by step (this is important) and demonstrate it at the interview. Literally down to the details: – This is how the client card opens – Dialing in progress – After the answer of the subscriber, we say this and that. Important! According to the script of the conversation, the video should clearly explain why what is being said and done is being shown, why certain wordings are chosen, etc.
Applicants are sent to resolve issues with documents.It is better to have printed instructions on how to request, for example, a forgotten SNILS or find out the TIN number, as well as a dedicated workplace for solving these and similar tasks. That is, the applicant should be able to find out / apply for paperwork without leaving the office (especially for guys who get their first job). At the same time, by the way, computer skills are checked.
The applicant takes away from the office with him, at most, a leaflet.The applicant must bring with him:

  • Reduced to A6 format (so that it fits easily in a purse) “Book about the company”
  • A business card (of good quality!) with a recruiter’s personal number.
  • Contract template. If he asks, give it out, the contract is not a secret thing. But if the candidate asks for a contract, it is necessary to perform “third-party closure”, that is, try to prevent possible objections that will arise from acquaintances and relatives of the candidate, with whom he is likely to discuss future work.
If a group interview is conducted, the participants are released together after the interview.You can’t do that. One toxic candidate who doesn’t like the terms can “spoil” the whole group in bulk, for example, while they are riding the elevator together. I release unsuitable people immediately during the interview, as soon as I understand that they did not pass one or another selection criterion. The rest also leave one by one, I let them go one by one under various pretexts, for example, to clarify the issue according to the documents. Nuance. If two friends or two girlfriends came to the interview, they should be released together. That is, there should not be a situation where one waits a long time for the other.
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