Human Error: A Real (But Manageable) Threat to CX and Sensitive Data Security

According to a recent study by IBM, human error is the cause of a staggering 95% of all cybersecurity and data breaches.  Another study by Balto reports that 66% of call center mistakes are attributed to human error.

The combination of these two findings should jump off the page to executives who are charged with providing a stellar customer experience, while also protecting the integrity of sensitive consumer information.

While the evolution of digital self-service customer support tools continues rapidly, the human element is—and in my view, will always be—in play.  So how do companies ensure that human error does not lead to a diminished customer experience or risk the security of sensitive data?

The answer lies within the same Balto report, which reports that 83% of call center agents cite company-provided training as their most helpful tool to avoid mistakes.

It’s not an earth-shattering statement to suggest that training is a key to preventing employee mistakes.  However, as a training and development executive with more than 37 years of experience, many of which are in the customer experience industry, I can say with full confidence that the type of training provided is the real key to success or failure.

I’ve heard many anecdotes about companies that stick new hires in a room for days, simply armed with binders of training material but little to no guidance.  Once this process is complete, little or no additional training is provided.  And that’s only if training is offered at all.  Disturbingly, training company Lorman reports that 59% of all employees claim they had no workplace training at all and that most of their skills were self-taught.

If you truly want to minimize human error, a commitment to training from the highest levels of the organization must be made.  And training cannot be a one-time, “check the box” activity.  Rather, it needs to be ongoing for employees at all levels.

At Servicing Solutions, employee development is not only something we prioritize, but it is an integral part of our corporate fabric that was mandated by our CEO…and for good reason. Our clients trust our call center employees to be the forward-facing arm of their business…interacting with customers, providing exceptional service, protecting their sensitive information, answering their questions, and resolving disputes, as necessary.

Simply put, we are trusted to protect our clients, and we can only accomplish that by employing—and developing—the best of the best.

We use training to support this responsibility in the following ways:

  • Robust New Hire Training:  Rather than a half-day orientation or 3-day training session that so many are accustomed to, we provide up to three weeks of classroom training, which includes lectures, hands-on activities, and side-by-side training with someone on the floor.  New hires must obtain passing scores on quizzes, a test on the FDCPA, and a final exam as well as demonstrate that the necessary skills have been learned.
  • Gateway Training: Training does not stop after the initial classroom period.  Our gateway training program continues the new hire training on the floor. Applying the wealth of information covered in the classroom, gateway training allows new hires to apply their learning under careful guidance to ensure they are doing the job right.
  • Ongoing Training: Our goal at Servicing Solutions is to retain the best and brightest and provide a career, not just a job.  Every employee receives ongoing training and support to make this possible. This can include classroom training when systems or processes change, refresher compliance training, or the implementation of company-wide initiatives.
  • Leadership Training: Our leadership training program focuses on passing on the skills and experience of our core management team to our next generation of leaders. For example, we have a variety of management and leadership books that expose our leaders to relevant concepts focused on engaging with and developing employees. The concepts are discussed in a group setting led by the core management team. Additional training sessions focus on the skills and knowledge we expect all our leaders to have.

We practice the adage “telling ain’t training.” Our training is activity based so agents practice what they are learning. And the practice is repetitive because it takes doing new skills more than once to learn them. And lastly, we provide tests throughout the training to ensure our agents can recall the knowledge content they need to be able to apply while doing their job.

My experience has taught me that this hands-on, repetitive, and scenario-based training is the most effective antidote to avoidable human error.

Ready to “Invest In Real Experience “ and put the industry’s best-trained representatives to work for you? Drop us a line at sales@servicingsolutions.com.