Outsource Solutions: Telemarketing
• What kind of ongoing training do TSRs receive? Follow-up training often consists of teaching reps how to cross-sell, says Pearlman, and doesn’t include sharpening sales skills in the areas of rapport, listening, probing and closing—but it should.
Find out if the agency schedules an incubation period where TSRs work in small groups or are mentored by fellow TSRs to solidify their skills, says Kislik.
• Are reps tested before being placed on the floor? TSRs should pass product knowledge tests before starting work on a call program, says Pearlman. Testing also should involve live scenario training, such as role playing and simulated live calls, says Kislik. The best training uses practice calls based on real-life sales situations, not a supervisor’s idea of what happens in typical sales situations.
• What is the ratio of supervisors to reps? Make sure the count includes only first-line supervisors—not the entire management team, says Pearlman. The ideal situation is to have supervisors on the floor monitoring and coaching reps regularly.
• What monitoring should I do? Pearlman advises marketers to monitor calls at least monthly, if not weekly, to verify that call quality is at the desired level.