As many of you already know, or learned from our recent Featured Training session, Encore® can be used to deliver eCoaching & eLearning assignments to agents and to analyze assignment completion in a variety of ways. The challenge for many Supervisors and Quality Assurance Managers is not in analyzing assignments, but in creating the lesson content in the first place.
In this Tips and Tricks article, I’m going to discuss in detail how to leverage content you may already have to easily generate cost-effective coaching content and create original micro-learning content for your agents.
Let’s talk about what micro-learning actually is. Micro-learning, simply, means short, single-topic lessons. Micro-learning is in stark contrast to traditional training, where contact center agents spend hours – often days – getting trained on everything they need to do their job.
Training with a traditional learning process is expensive, but also necessary – at least, most of the time.
Micro-learning doesn’t replace traditional training; it usually comes after it. If and when there’s an indicator that an agent may need to brush-up on a particular topic, or is ready to extend their knowledge in a specific area, then micro-learning can be applied.
A single, short lesson – as opposed to a scheduled, lengthy session – is far more effective because it can be applied – and consumed – more efficiently. An agent can receive micro-learning as soon as the need is identified, and is more likely to receive and retain the content because it’s short and related to a single topic.
4 Types of eLearning Content
With micro-learning in mind, let’s talk about eLearning lesson content. Encore supports four types of content for eLearning lessons:
- Web content
Let’s look at each one separately so you can plan your content development accordingly.
Documents are by far the most general-purpose way to share content with agents. Word, PowerPoint, or even Excel can be used to create simple lesson content which can be converted to PDF so it can be embedded in an eLearning lesson.
Creating content using ordinary desktop publishing applications is fast and cost effective – just use the “Save as PDF” function inside whatever application is easiest for you based on the content you want to deliver.
The main thing to remember is to provide enough context in the document to help the reader understand where you’re coming from. A slide deck with key points may work if you’re presenting in a meeting, but it may not provide enough context for an agent to read on their own.
Imagine being an agent on the other side – just listing the talking points probably isn’t enough. Be thorough, and consider adding examples or context to make sure they get it.
Balance that with the micro-learning concept. Keep it short and focused to a single topic. Review key points discussed during formal training sessions. Outline examples that give the agent a clear picture of what you’re reminding them. If appropriate, refer them to resources they are familiar with.
Video is one of the most engaging media formats available. It is also one of the most expensive to produce. Or is it?
When we’re talking about micro-learning, we don’t necessarily need polished, sophisticated, lengthy training videos. Video can be delivered low-budget without sacrificing quality.
Record yourself presenting the content. Using Gotomeeting, Webex, or similar, share a document and record yourself while you describe the content and give examples.
If you’re comfortable with it, use a webcam so they can watch you while you’re speaking.
Most web conferencing tools will let you capture and save the recording file as an .mp4 – easy video production using tools you already have!
Create an animated video using a web-based animated video maker. There are many such tools available today – some are free. Try a few and pick one; they’re easy to use and can create content that helps bring a particular topic to life – especially for coaching soft skills.
For example, you could easily create a conversation between cartoon agents and customers that demonstrate the right and wrong way to handle particular scenarios. Checkout Animaker, VEED, Vyond, or just search for “Explainer Video” and find one you like.
Video is such an engaging format that using either of the methods above is sure to deliver content that will achieve the results you need.
Recordings should be at the top of the list for many companies. What better way to coach agents on soft-skills or techniques than to use actual recordings?
You do have to be concerned about privacy, of course, and the issue of whether or not your agents will be comfortable having their recordings used for training purposes will need to be considered. But that being said, you probably have tens – perhaps hundreds – of thousands of recordings at your disposal. And some of those may have already been tagged or flagged because of what they contain.
Encore lets you use audio recordings alone or audio with video, so you have a lot of content available. You could use only agents that have since left the company, and audio (and video) can be scrubbed to remove personal information.
Consider using real recordings as content and adding annotation tags as “commentary” so your agents get both simultaneously. This is a powerful and cost-effective way to deliver effective coaching content.
eLearning Web Content
The content you can leverage from the web is as infinite as… well, as the web itself. Although there are some drawbacks to delivering Encore eLearning content in a browser, that shouldn’t stop you from considering it.
You can’t track the time spent on the assignment, or help the agent resume the lesson where they left off, but you can create an eLearning lesson that points to existing content, wherever it might be posted.
Internal wiki pages should have an abundance of content available, and you can link directly to the section you want to display. Industry articles might be useful, too.
You can always link to a UNC path to deliver content stored on a shared file volume (in most cases, it would be preferable to use the actual document however).
Perhaps the best web content of all might be lesson content that you already have in an LMS. Depending on your LMS, you might be able to “deep-link” directly to a content module (provided the agent supplies the username and password along the way).
In other cases, you should be able to link to the LMS and provide the agent (in the eCoaching module fields) instructions for how to open the module you want them to.
This is a great way to turn passive LMS content into active coaching material.
Encore eLearning supports many different content types to deliver coaching and supplemental training to agents. My suggestion? Try them all, and see how agents respond. You will soon get a sense of what content type is best suited for a specific objective (coaching, supplemental training, company updates, etc.).
As always, please send your feedback and suggestions for future Tips & Tricks you’d like to see. Email firstname.lastname@example.org.