Introduction:

Employee onboarding is a process new hires go through when beginning their career in a company. This process takes time and can’t be completed in a few days, especially when looking at call center employees. Proper training is incredibly valuable and can’t be overdone during the onboarding process. 

Good onboarding practices can improve your employee retention by as much as one quarter. Meaning, you can save time and money by effectively training new hires. That’s where an effective onboarding process comes in!  

In this checklist, you’ll find a process designed to ensure you’re introducing the necessary equipment, policies, practices, and information to your new call center hires in the most effective way possible. The goal is to get the most out of your call center employee onboarding without these employees feeling overwhelmed. 


So, let's run through this call center employee onboarding workflow with your new hire.

Before the first day:

Tasks should be completed before the employee’s first day. 

Collect basic information

Before the onboarding process can begin, you’re required to prepare any necessary paperwork and information before your new hire’s first day.

You can start preparing this paperwork by recording the following information in the form field below: 

Prepare paperwork

When hiring a new employee you need to remember the basics - all forms must be intact and passed on to the HR department. Save copies of these vital forms using the form fields below. 

If you require some examples of the necessary forms, see below.

  1. Intellectual property and assignment agreement (Customizable example)
  2. Non-Disclosure agreement (Customizable example)

Using the Members form field below, assign the employee who will approve the employee's paperwork. This is typically the HR manager. 

You can also edit what paperwork you want to upload during this onboarding process by adding the workflow to your library and clicking 'Edit.' 

Approval:

Will be submitted for approval:
  • Prepare paperwork
    Will be submitted

Create a company email for the employee

Great! Now that you’ve completed the employee paperwork, you can go ahead and create a company email for your new hire. 

Send them the login details to their personal email address by sending this email:

Send a welcome email

You want to make your new hire feel welcome before their start date. Sending a welcome email helps achieve this while also keeping their attention and preventing them from being a no-show on their first day.

Here's an example welcome email you can send to your new hire after you've created their company email: 

Inform existing employees

⚡️ You could automate this step by setting up an integration with Slack 

You should let the rest of your team know that a new teammate will be arriving shortly. Sending an email is a great way to ensure they know to welcome a new face to the team. 

Add the recipients who should be informed about this new hire's arrival. These recipients should be added in the 'Cc' section of this email widget. 

[CONDITIONAL] Provide an employee handbook

An employee handbook is an excellent way to help your new hire understand your company culture and the relevant information for their role. If you have a handbook, you can include it into Pages and provide the link in this workflow to help provide the new employee with easy access. 

[CONDITIONAL] Read the employee handbook

The employee should be assigned to this task where they can tick off the subtasks once they have completed reading through the necessary sections shown below: 

  • 1
    Introducing the company history
  • 2
    Explaining the time off policy
  • 3
    Discussing employee behavior
  • 4
    Define pay and promotions
  • 5
    Inform about benefit

During the first week:

This should be completed by the end of the new hire’s first week



Schedule the introductory session

Five9 recommends you to follow this process for an introductory session that will make new hires feel at home. Make sure you follow the process by checking off the subtasks as you go along: 

  • 1
    Greet new agents with name tags/place cards
  • 2
    Present a fun gift that reinforces your company culture
  • 3
    Describe your contact center’s vision, mission, and passion
  • 4
    Explain the importance of the new agent’s role
  • 5
    Pair your employee up with an experienced buddy/sponsor/mentor
  • 6
    Get an executive to welcome new arrivals
  • 7
    Make sure everyone has a buddy or fellow new-hire to chat with at lunch

The goal of the introduction session is to introduce everyone and create an awesome environment.

When this is done, they should feel ready to get on with their first assignments.

(Source: smallbusiness.chron.com & tmcnet.com)

Remember that you can make changes to this subtasks list by adding the workflow to your library and selecting the 'Edit' button. 

Provide access to recorded calls for training

One of the most effective ways for call center employees to get well-acquainted with their new role is to listen to previous customer calls. This allows them to get a feel of what they will eventually be doing.

That’s why a great task to assign to your new hire is listening to 10 hours of recorded customer calls for training purposes.

After giving this task, you should also ask the new hire to document possible important bits of information and take notes. This can also work as a way to check their progress. 

Record the new hire's performance

Once your new hire has completed this task, you should schedule a meeting with them to see how they found the assignment. From here, you can record their progress and take note of their performance. 

During this meeting, you can find out: 

  • How did they find this task? 
  • Did they have any challenges?
  • What was the part of this task they enjoyed the most? 
  • What did they learn? 
  • Where do they believe they can improve? 

Approval:

Will be submitted for approval:
  • Record the new hire's performance
    Will be submitted

Assign a mentor

Now that the first task is out the way and the new hire has gotten a taste of what to expect in their new role, assigning a mentor would be an excellent step. According to ICMI:

This provides them with the opportunity to report to buddy to ask for help, which is generally more accessible than approaching a line manager.

It’s sometimes best to assign an employee who has recently undergone the onboarding process themselves, as they can provide greater insight into what to expect. 

Schedule an end-of-week check-in meeting

At the end of the first week, you shouldn't expect too much from your new hire. Meet to discuss progress with milestones, how they feel they're getting to grips with the company procedure and how they are finding the job so far.

After this, you can introduce them to their mentor and discuss what role this mentor will be playing in their onboarding process. 

It is recommended to train employees bit-by-bit for around two months before giving them a seat on the phone floor with everyone else. Avoid flooding new hires with information. Just put them to the test and report on their progress. Make sure to be clear about what they did well and what needs improving.

Set another group of milestones for next week according to how this week went. Schedule the meeting using Google Calendar.

During the first month:

Tasks should be completed within the employee’s first month. 

Discuss role, goals and projects with mentor

During the training period, your new employee should work closely with their mentor. Their mentor ensures the new employee is oriented in the organization, policies, facilities and more. 

To ensure this process goes well, you should discuss the new employee's role with their mentor. Discuss the goals you have set for the new hire and think of appropriate projects that would be beneficial for the training period. Note all of these in the appropriate form fields below.

(Source: managementhelp.org)

Possible projects for the new hire

  • 1
    Shadow work with mentor
  • 2
    Reading help articles
  • 3
    Learning about company processes
  • 4
    Conducting test calls

Start transition to the phone floor

With the help of your employee's mentor, the new hire can start getting more comfortable working on the phone floor. The calls taken during this period should be undemanding and basic, purely for instructional purposes. A great part of mentoring is that the mentor can give feedback straight after the call session.

The transition from incubation (unimportant calls) to the phone floor (final working place) should be gradual and happen with constant supervision. This process can take between one to two months, so you shouldn’t rush your new hire. Start with one hour each day on the phone floor. 

eLearning Industry recommends placing employees in less complex and demanding customer service channels. Tasks might include responding to clients via email or social networks where there are no immediate responses to deal with. This gives them the time they need to gain knowledge and experience before answering calls or dealing with technical problems.

Fill out the employee survey

We strive to offer an enjoyable employee onboarding experience, which is why your opinion matters to us. Please fill out this survey to help us ensure we're providing the best experience possible.  

Record new hire's progress on the phone floor

At this point in the onboarding process, your new hire should have the ability to conduct their work with limited supervision. They should be working independently on the phone floor and should have the capability to handle tasks needing immediate responses. 

You should detail: 

  • If there are any issues
  • How the new hire handles work under pressure
  • If they are knowledgeable in what they are talking about on calls
  • If any additional training is required 

Maintain contact with the new hire

Make it clear that you're always ready to help them and arrange any extra training if they need it, and keep track of their progress towards new milestones.

Regardless if there are any issues or not, a recurring meeting should be scheduled to touch base with the new hire and get a clear understanding of where they stand in the onboarding process. 

During the initial meeting of your recurring 1:1's, you should discuss what day and time would work best to have these recurring meetings, check if the new hire has encountered any issues (and if these have been addressed), what should be done to ensure these issues are being resolved, and any other topics you deem relevant. 

The rest of the 90 days:

Tasks should be completed within the employee’s first 90 days of employment.  

Review progress

Call center employee onboarding should last 90 days. This gives the new hire time to settle in, to realize anything that might be a problem, and to solve it with their mentor or manager. 

As you reach the end of the onboarding process you should be conducting weekly progress reviews with your new employees and checking they are settling in well.

Start to work in the idea of long-term goals as you get closer to moving the new hire to the phone floor.

Make sure to write down how well the employee has progressed or not. Your review findings will be approved by the line manager in the next task. 

Approval:

Will be submitted for approval:
  • Review progress
    Will be submitted

Set long-term goals

Based on the employee's ability to reach milestones you have set in the past, formulate some long-term goals you would like them to work towards.

This is something you can assess during each weekly progress meeting but monitor more infrequently after the settling-in process is over.

Explain future plans

During your final weekly progress review after 90 days with the employee, you should explain what the structure will be in the future. 

  • 1
    When team meetings will be
  • 2
    How often you are going to be checking in
  • 3
    Whether you have an open door policy
  • 4
    How you handle issues your employee would like to discuss

Sources:

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