Blog

Hiring Live Chat Staff

March 04, 2016 Kaylene Eckels

Recruiting the right employees is the cornerstone of any organization. When you think about live chat support, you need a special work force to offer a seamless experience for your customers. Depending on the size of your organization, the size of the workforce will be either high or low.

For the purposes of today’s discussion, we will look at a company that needs a large live chat workforce. For instance, you are looking to build an in-house staff and are consulting an expert in the industry to help you set up that department. What should you be looking into? What key items should be included in their proposal?

Before we get into their deliverable, industry experts will not only advise you on the workforce management but also on performance management, compensation plan, processes and quality assurance. They have the knowledge and expertise to give the right people for the job.

Here are the key items that they should highlight in the workforce management:-

  1. Job DescriptionsYou need several people in that department, and they all need elaborate job descriptions. Only with a job description, can you hold someone accountable for that role and can commit to it. They understand what you expect from them.If you do not have experience in running a live chat department, you may not know what their job descriptions should be exactly and who should be in that department. Your expert consultant will therefore, be in the best position to develop the job descriptions for the various staff you need.
  2. Hiring ProcessWith the job descriptions in place, the next thing is the hiring process. The hiring process should be specific to the job.
    • Application review : The first step should be to review all the applications submitted. Background checks and experiences are scrutinized at this level. The priority should go to those with relevant experience to your company.
    • Assessment : The shortlisted candidates should be called in for an assessment. Given that live chat requires lots of speaking to customers via chat, the assessment is mainly on their grammar and typing skills. You would not want to end with employees that can speak well but not type well.
    • Interview : A one on one interview will give you the opportunity to learn more about that individual. This prescreening interview confirms their industry knowledge as well checks their profile skill set
    • On the job training : This can be done online where they prospective candidate chat aptitude and language are assessed. They get to experience firsthand what live chat is all about.
    • Final interview : By this time, only the most qualified candidates have made it. The whole operations team is present for this final interview, not just the HR.

    When you follow the above hiring process, you will most definitely hire the right people for the job.

  3. Tools and TemplatesFinally, you need to understand what tools and templates they are using to make the recruitment process easy and successful. These tools and templates outline the basic skills set, skill based tests and evaluation sheets.

In conclusion, these 3 points job description, hiring process and tools and templates will guide your recruitment in the right direction. You cannot afford to make a mistake in the recruitment of live chat staff. However, if you feel that you need live chat support but do not want to create an in-house team, you can outsource that function to a capable contact center.

Whichever way you choose to go in-house or external contact center, live chat should be part of your customer service strategy.