Hiring for Customer Service: A 6-Step Framework to Recruit Top Agents

Jon Tucker, CEO at HelpFlow.com
Jon Tucker, CEO at HelpFlow.com
Last updated on 
August 26, 2022
August 26, 2022
Hiring for Customer Service: A 6-Step Framework to Recruit Top Agents

When you say the word “growth,” most brand leaders think of customer acquisition, paid ads, or the newest marketing trend — probably something about TikTok influencers. And while acquiring customers is important, we know that truly sustainable growth comes from loyal customers, organic referrals, reviews, and repeat buyers — all of which stem from your customer experience. And at the core of that customer experience is your customer service team.

Your customer service agents spend more time interacting with customers than any other department, including marketing and sales. They manage VIP customers, repair at-risk relationships, and have the opportunity to chat with customers at make-or-break moments (like right before a sale). In other words, your brand’s growth hinges on the quality of your customer service team.

We can’t offer any algorithms or magical software to find and hire talented agents. Hiring takes time, experience, and a strategic approach. That last part — a strategic approach to hiring — is what I’m here to provide. 

At HelpFlow.com, we run 24/7 live chat and customer service teams for over 100 brands. We’ve hired hundreds of customer service agents successfully and built scalable, robust customer service operations that provide great customer experiences and drive growth for brands we work with. 

In this post, I’ll walk through the framework we use step-by-step. My goal is to help you or your hiring managers simplify your customer service hiring process, find high-impact customer service professionals, and transform your brand’s customer service from a frustrating cost center to a seamless and scalable revenue driver.

But first, what’s really at stake here? 

Bad customer service will kill your brand

If you are like most ecommerce brands, you hire customer service reps when your team needs additional support to keep up with tickets. This purely reactive approach means your support team will always be buried in tickets or onboarding new team members. The constant scramble means they’ll never have the bandwidth to think strategically, improve processes, or work on higher-impact initiatives to help the business.

Here’s the snowball effect we often see. First, your agents become overworked with an ever-growing number of tickets to process each day. This endless sprint to keep up contributes to extremely high turnover in the customer service industry. According to Harvard Business Review, CS reps typically last a job for about a year. 

The snowball effect of bad customer service

As agents start to burn out and fall behind, customer service experience quality suffers. Customers feel frustrated with slow response times and often disappointed with incomplete or ineffective solutions from junior agents hired just a few months before. A downtrend in customer satisfaction is common with brands as they start to scale. 

Eventually, a poorly run customer service operation starts to have a direct effect on sales. First-time shoppers give low NPS scores and never develop brand loyalty. Customer complaints start to appear, scaring off potential customers, and referrals dry up. 

As the quality of service goes down, the cost of customer service goes up because you have to spend more time hiring and training customer service representatives that won’t be productive for weeks, if not months. Replacing an employee typically costs 1.5-2x their annual salary when you factor in all the costs, according to Gallup

The business sees these poor results and high costs, and refuses to invest in the department, which leaves them even more under-resourced. The cycle continues.

Great hiring processes can accelerate growth

A great customer service team (that’s not over-worked and under-resourced) will stop this vicious cycle. But beyond answering customer inquiries and managing ticket load, they’ll systematically improve your brand’s customer experience and, by extension, growth engine.

An excellent customer service team will create replace the vicious cycle with a positive one by:

  • Improving your shopping experience by collecting customer feedback, building self-service resources, and studying data for high-impact opportunities
  • Intercepting new visitors with proactive support to raise the conversion rate
  • Helping customers who have unsatisfactory experiences, winning some of them back
  • Encouraging happy customers to purchase more, leave reviews, refer new customers, and remain loyal to your brand
Customer service accelerates growth with repeat purchases, custoemr reviews and referrals, on-site conversions, and more.

Ready to learn how to fill your customer service positions with agents who will make an impact? Let’s get into it. Here’s our 6-step framework to hire the best customer service teams around.

1) Assess your customer service hiring needs

The first step to hiring great customer service reps is to shift from a reactive hiring process to a proactive one. When you hire reactively, you tend to rush hiring and training to get a body in a seat processing tickets as quickly as possible. Of course, this leads to low-quality interactions and dings to brand perception. By proactively forecasting customer service needs, you’ll have time to run a more thorough hiring process to find and hire the ideal candidate.

Here is a quick overview of how to forecast customer service volume:

  1. Identify the percentage of orders that typically turn into support tickets. For example, if you historically get about 20 tickets for every 100 orders then you can forecast that 20% of your future orders will turn into tickets. 
  2. Use the traction to ticket ratio to forecast how many tickets you expect to receive in the future, based on your sales forecast for the upcoming quarter or another time period. 
  3. Use the agent ticket capacity per day, accounting for PTO and sick leave, to determine how many agents you need to process that upcoming ticket volume. Account for ramp-up time for new team members.
Source: Gorgias

The three tips above are just a snapshot of a true forecasting process. Check out our framework for customer service forecasting for more detailed guidance.

Forecasting will help you predict your future needs and shift to a more proactive approach. Remember to give yourself enough time to conduct a thorough hiring process and onboarding program. If you anticipate needing two new agents in Q4, start collecting applications by early Q3.
Forecasting is just one strategy to understand when you should hire. Here are a few additional signals that could mean your team is understaffed: 

  1. Declining metrics: Each week, you should check in with customer service management metrics such as first response time, handle time, and customer satisfaction. If you start to see these metrics decline, it could mean your team can’t keep up with ticket volume and needs additional support.
  2. Team morale: As part of your customer service team meeting cadence, you should have regular team huddles, manager-led 1:1s, and anonymous climate surveys.  Managers should work to foster trust and open dialogue so agents can share their stress. Don’t be afraid to ask them directly about their workload. If agents start to report challenges, especially if the concern comes up across multiple agents, you may need to staff up. 

You may find that you need additional support, but you may not need to hire people full-time to solve the problem. You may be able to support your core team with other solutions such as:

  1. Efficiency improvements: If you’re like most brands, you’ve frankensteined together a customer service process, piece by piece. Consider doing a workflow audit to identify opportunities to improve the team’s workflow with process improvements, email templates, and customer self-service options. 
  2. Changes to coverage schedules: You may have the right amount of agents, but simply have a schedule that leads to ticket buildup. For example, if everyone is staffed M-F, response and resolution times will suffer over the weekend. Look into your hour-to-hour ticket volume, especially on conversational channels like live chat and phone, and schedule agents whenever you have peaks in incoming tickets.
  3. High-quality outsourced help: Hiring full-time employees is cumbersome and expensive, and sometimes more than you need. By working with a high-quality outsourced team, you can bridge the gap to have additional agents on a custom schedule or just for a season of high volume. 
  4. Overtime opportunities: If your agents are currently salaried, you could change them to an hourly model so they can earn overtime during busy weeks. Don’t make this decision without consulting the agents. They might be enthusiastic, but they might also dislike that your solution for being understaffed involves working more hours.

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That said, you may conclude that you need to hire new agents. Here’s how to do it well. 

2) Create a target hire persona for the role

Before you start your search, I recommend taking some time to understand your hiring needs and describe your ideal candidate.

First, take stock of:

  • Everything the customer support team does today
  • Everything the team wants to do but doesn’t have the bandwidth for
  • Everything the team currently does that could be phased out with process improvement or recalibration of ownership

Once that’s done, you’ll be better prepared to understand:

  • What existing roles need to be filled or staffed up
  • What new roles need to be developed
  • What type of skills would match each of those needs — this is where your target persona comes into play
Take stock of the first list of bullets to understand the second

A target persona is a tool we developed to build clarity around your jobs to be done, the skills needed to accomplish those jobs, the type of person who would succeed in this role, and how you’ll measure that person’s success.

The value is similar to an ideal customer profile (ICP) for sales and marketing. By defining the core qualities you need ahead of time, you can create a sharper job description, distribute the job posting in more targeted channels, and decrease the time it takes to find the right person.

What to include in a target hire persona

Your target hire persona should include mission, outcomes, competencies, and culture fit

Below are the key sections to include in a target hire persona: 

Mission:

  • What is the purpose of this position in your organization?
  • Why does it exist?
  • What will the role focus on?
  • Why are you hiring this person now?

Outcomes:

  • How will you measure this person’s success?
  • How will you keep this person accountable to the mission described above?
  • Use specific, clear, and quantifiable outcomes to answer both questions above.

Competencies:

  • What experiences and qualifications should this person have?
  • What attributes and customer service skills will help this person succeed? (For example, is it more important to be organized or empathetic for your specific needs?

Culture fit: 

  • Separate from the role, what are the specific attributes that make someone a culture fit for your team? 
  • These will vary depending on the company, but it’s very important to define these so that you can screen otherwise qualified applicants if they aren’t a culture fit.

Customer service agent target hire persona example

We put together a full customer service agent target hire persona example that you can access and modify for your own needs. Consider revising the mission and outcomes slightly to match your needs, and adjust the target experience for your specific company.

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Have questions? Feel free to reach out

3) Create a job posting that sells (and market it)

Once you have a target hire persona completed, it’s time to start marketing- yes, I said marketing, just like how you grow your business. 

Typically, when someone is hiring they simply put together a job description, post it on a few job boards, and work with the applicants that come in. This is especially true for customer service hires, which are unfortunately seen as low-value.

This approach leads to a small number of low-quality applicants. The kinds of A-players you’re looking for aren’t scouring job boards and responding to basic job postings — they’re likely crushing it at their current role.

Here’s how to create and distribute a job posting that reaches the right people and convinces them to apply:

Sell the role in the job posting

Remember, hiring is a two-way street. You have to impress the candidate just as much as they have to impress you. Don’t just publish a list of duties and requirements on a job posting website with an application link. Instead, sell the role (and the company) by using parts of the target hire persona above:

Checklist for an effective customer service job posting, listed below

Clearly explain the company’s current position, mission, and goals. Share a bit of the journey you’ve been on so far and the successes you’ve had. The right candidate will be excited about your particular growth stage and the opportunity to help you with the next leg of the journey.

Also, dedicate some space to selling your team and unique company culture. This doesn’t need to be all rainbows and unicorns: great candidates know building a great company takes hard work. But they should be able to get an understanding of your company’s unique values, priorities, and ways of working. Describe and share examples about how your teams collaborate, the level of autonomy, accountability, coaching, and support they can expect, and the general vibe of a day-in-the-life of your team. 

Finally, paint a very clear picture of what success looks like by sharing the outcomes and target metrics. This will ensure the applicants understand what you want to accomplish before your first conversation. Clear success metrics will also attract goal-driven people with an “I can do that” attitude. 

This may seem like a lot of work, but you’ll save time by getting higher-quality candidates quickly, and in the long run, having to rehire due to rushing into a bad hire.

How to drive a lot of quality applicants

An enticing job description gets you halfway to an inbox full of strong applications. Now, you have to get that job description seen by a lot of high-quality candidates.

Remember, great team members don’t typically spend their days scouring job boards to find a new job. You need to catch their attention in other ways to spark their interest in jumping ship and joining your brand.

Your job posting should be shared with your network, team, job boards, customers, and more

Here are multiple ways to drive a lot of great applicants for your role:

Publish on multiple job boards. For example, if you are working with a remote team, consider publishing on WeWorkRemotely or Remote.co. If you are hiring locally, leverage a few different job boards such as Indeed.com or ZipRecruiter.com to get the best coverage. LinkedIn is also a good option for both local and remote hires. If possible, make the extra investment to make a premium or boosted posting. And, especially if you are in a challenging niche, consider specialized job boards and communities. The Support Driven Slack community, for example, has a job board for ecommerce community service positions. 

Another best practice is to share the role with your network. Send a few messages to peers who may know someone fit for the role and publish the posting on your social media. Also, encourage your team to do the same — they’ll be working with this new hire, after all. Again, don’t just copy/paste the link. Sell the role to attract the best candidates. 

Finally, involve your customers in the recruitment process. One of your customers may want the job or know someone else who could be a good fit. Customers who love and use your products have a great head start: they’re familiar with your brand, your shopping experience, and the benefits of your products. And since customer service skills can be transferred from many other types of roles, your customer base may have more qualified candidates than you expect.

4) Screen applicants async to avoid wasting time

A great job description effectively shared means you’ll have a steady stream of applicants. You might feel overwhelmed with the workload of screening applicants to find the right hire. And rightfully so: Applicant screening can turn into a lot of work if you do it with typical in-depth reviews of each applicant and blocking out time for interviews. 

Interviews are important, and we’ll explain how to hold a customer service interview below (including interview questions to use). But first, here’s how to effectively screen the large number of applicants you’ll receive to find the best possible hires. 

Quiz them on the job posting

Screening starts by gauging how well applicants read through the details of the job posting. If they’re not willing to spend the time reading and following the instructions on the job posting, odds are they won’t be detail-oriented in the role. 

By asking a simple question or making a request deep within the content of the job posting, you can quickly screen whether applicants read it. For example, you can ask applicants to start their cover letter with, “ready to rock!’“ This way, you can skip over anyone that didn’t catch and follow the instruction. 

Optional: Assign a micro take-home assignment

At HelpFlow.com, we skip take-home assignments because our hiring process is so thorough. However, since customer support agents spend most of their days writing, you may choose to request a short writing sample at this stage.

If you opt to include this step, consider keeping the writing sample very short — something applicants can complete in 10-15 minutes. However, be aware that more up-front work from your candidates means:

  • You’ll spend more time reviewing applications
  • You may lose some qualified job seekers due to a too-strenuous application process — but they likely wouldn’t be the most committed hire

Send them a common customer question or one of your most common customer problems. Give them resources like a knowledge base article and your policies so they have all the necessary information. At this stage, you’re looking for their ability to communicate clearly and empathetically. 

Request a brief video questionnaire

Rather than jumping straight to an interview, send a brief questionnaire to the applicant so they can tell you more about their experience in a short video message. There are tools such as Spark Hire that make this easy. But a simple list of questions and instructions to send a response using a screencast tool like Loom is just as easy. 

For the questionnaire, you should ask open-ended questions to get a sense of how their experience and capabilities fit your needs. You might also choose to include a fun, get-to-know-you question to get a better sense of their personality. 

Asking why they think they are the best fit for the role is a good starting point, as it gives them the ability to provide more context than they typically would in a text response. Also, this gives you the ability to compare their experience to the target hire persona. The way someone answers this question typically makes clear if they’re a fit at a high level.

Consider asking questions like:

  • Why do you think you’re the best fit for this role?
  • What are you looking for in your next role?
  • How are you looking to grow and learn?
  • What’s a mistake you made and learned from?
  • How would your friends and family describe you? 
  • If you could have any superpower, what would it be?

In their video response, you’ll see their communication skills, confidence, and personality — without having to schedule dozens or hundreds of 30-minute meetings.

5) Conduct two interviews to assess fit and experience

Interviews can be time-consuming. They take time to schedule and conduct, especially if you put too many people through the entire interview process. Multiple rounds of screening ensure you only invest time in the most promising candidates.

Ideally, your job posting results in hundreds of applicants. Your first screening (described above) gets you down to about a dozen, max. The first interview we’re about to describe gets you down to the single digits — about four or five. Then, you’ll only have to deeply interview those four or five candidates to find your new hire(s).

1) A quick interview to assess skills and mindset

Your customer service interview screening should be 10-15 minutes

This first interview is a brief (20- or 30-minute) phone call to learn more about each applicant's skill set, goals, and mindset. Skills aren’t the only prerequisite for success: True rock stars have a growth mindset and will look at this opportunity as the next step in a passionate career.

At the beginning of this interview, we like to build up the candidate’s confidence by saying something like, “We had ### applicants and you’ve made it this far, so you’re definitely a strong person for this role. We’re confident you’ll be successful regardless of whether you work for us or get scooped up by someone else.”

Then, you’re ready to start asking questions.

Questions to understand their goals and mindset

  • What does success look like for you a year from now?
  • What do you want to accomplish in this role?
  • What specific achievements will make you feel the most successful?

These questions should feel familiar, and that’s because they should roughly align with the mission and outcomes you chose in the target hire persona. Of course, candidates didn’t read that document so it’s unfair to expect perfect alignment. But they will help you understand which applicants are the best fit for your needs.

For example,  if your target hire persona was a systems thinker who can help with problem-solving and organization across your team, you might look for answers about strong processes and great teamwork. Alternatively, if you’re looking for a brilliant customer-facing agent, you might seek answers related to empathy and customer advocacy. 

Also, a lack of clear, focused goals at this stage is a red flag. If someone answers vaguely or responds with a variation of “I just want a good customer service job and your company seems great,” then they’re not going to be a rock star on your team.

Questions to understand skillset

Skills are a difficult thing to discuss. If the candidate prepared well, they’ll likely know what skills you need for the role based on the job posting and find ways to weave those skills into their answers. We like to ask a series of questions that force candidates to reflect on their skills in a slightly different way. Here’s how we get there:

  • We’re going to talk to a few people you’ve worked with at the end of the application process, should you make it that far. What’s a role you succeeded in, and who was your boss in that role? If we talk to them later in the interview process, how do you think they’ll describe you? What parts of the job would they say you excelled at?

Again, you’re looking for clear answers and alignment with your target hire persona. 

Second, gauge which parts of the job they’re least skilled and excited about. Here’s how we might get at this answer:

  • Now I want to understand the opposite. What are some things that boss would say you’re not great at? Or maybe, what are some things you’re capable of doing but don’t love?

To make this question a bit less intimidating, we usually share an example. We’ve often used the example, “I’m able to whip up some graphic designs for our website and they look pretty good. But graphic design is something I just hate doing. It’s a tedious process and I would rather have a marketing person handle that if at all possible, so I can focus on my strengths.” 

This question allows the candidate to essentially complain about select aspects of the role. You’re not looking to trick someone into disqualifying themselves from the running. However, you are trying to avoid a situation in which you hire someone to spend all week doing something they’d rather avoid.

Once they answer, consider asking follow-up questions to get more examples and context.

Questions to understand teamwork and self-awareness

  • How would past supervisors rate you on a scale of 1-10?
  • How would your peers rate you on a scale of 1-10?

These questions are quick and help you understand whether their previous answers were honest and self-aware. 

Ask them for the name of two previous bosses and two previous colleagues. Explain that you won’t reach out to those people yet, but might if you extend an offer. 

Once they give you names, ask how each person would rate them on a scale of 1-10 — insist on a single number for each. You’re looking for lots of 8s and 9s. If you see a trend of 7 or lower, that could indicate this person has — and may have oversold themselves when discussing their skillset earlier in the interview. Also, 10s across the board show a lack of self-awareness and growth mindset. 

By the end of this interview, you’ll have a solid understanding of whether each candidate’s skills and mindset fit your needs. Move the best candidates onto the final interview, thank the rest for their time, and invite them to re-apply for future roles — after all, each role should have a specific target hire persona, and they might just fit your next opening a bit better. To thank them for their time, you can also refer them to anyone else in your network that’s hiring.  

2) A deep-dive interview to know you have a great hire

Your longer interview should be 2 hours.

Each candidate that makes it to this final interview should be a pretty great fit for the role. Some companies might go straight to a job offer at this stage, but the risk of bringing on the wrong new hire still exists.

The deep-dive interview will last two hours. Two hours might seem like a big investment. But two hours is nothing compared to investing two or three months into a candidate before realizing you need to start the hiring process over because they’re not a great fit.

A deep-dive interview gives you a crystal-clear understanding of each candidate’s entire career history, their ability to communicate clearly and effectively in a long-format meeting, and their personality. After this conversation, you’ll have zero doubts about which candidate is your rock star.

Here’s how the deep-dive interview works.

Set up a two-hour conversational interview with a small panel

When you invite the candidate to this meeting, be clear about:

  • The goal of the meeting
  • The format of the meeting
  • The list of attendees

If you give the candidate some context behind such a long meeting, they can approach the interview with more preparation and less anxious energy. 

As far as the list of attendees, you can make a decision based on your team’s makeup and availability. If possible, we recommend inviting the hiring manager, a senior manager, and a peer to introduce the interviewee to the team they’ll work with (and vice versa). However, you can also run the interview solo if that works better for your team. 

A remote panel interview

Once you assemble the panel and schedule the interview, the long-form interview itself is quite straightforward and formulaic. Here’s what it looks like:

Discuss every full-time position the candidate has had, in chronological order

Start from the beginning of the candidate’s resume and discuss each and every full-time role in their job history. For early parts of their career (or jobs that are not related to your open role) you can move quickly through these questions. But it is important to discuss each role.

By digging into every single part of the candidate’s career with a standard set of questions, you will get a clear overview of how they’ve performed and what makes them tick. 

Ask the same set of questions for each position

What makes this interview process effective and simple is that you ask the same questions for each role. This gives the interview a conversational flow that produces powerful insights. Here are the questions:

  • What were you hired to do? This gives you an idea of the mission and outcomes they were hired to accomplish
  • What accomplishments are you most proud of? This helps you understand whether they accomplished those goals and what they value in terms of achievement
  • What were the low points of the role? This helps show the candidate’s self-awareness and growth mindset, and gives you a chance to spot red-flag trends — that said, recognize every job naturally has high and low points
  • Who was your boss? What was it like working with them? This gives you context for your reference call later on and tells you how the candidate likes to be managed

Together, these answers give you a good idea of their specific experience in customer service roles, their experience with handling a helpdesk and the challenges of customer service, and some insight into their soft skills that a shorter interview could never provide.

Don’t bother with a take-home assignment for these qualified candidates

Many companies will assign a test assignment this late in the process to do a final check on the skillset and quality of candidates. We don’t recommend a test assignment — especially at this point — because assignments are too simple to game and sometimes give candidates a bad impression of your company because you asked them to do “free work.” 

If you want to use an assignment, keep it short and earlier in the process. But at this point in the process, the deep-dive interview will give you much richer information. Specifically, it helps you understand what the candidate will actually be like on your team before you invest in onboarding and two or three months of work.

6) Use reference checks to get more context and certainty

Most people treat reference checks as a way to make sure the candidate told the truth on their resume and during the hiring process. That can be part of the process, but the greater value of reference checks is to get even deeper context into the candidate’s skills and work style.

Checklist for reference calls, listed below

Here’s how to approach reference calls:

  • Use the deep-dive interview to decide who to contact. If the candidate mentioned a particularly important or interesting relationship, success, or challenge, make a note to call their boss in that position to get more information.
  • Chat with references for 5-10 minutes. These conversations should be informal and conversation — you want the major takeaways about what it’s like to work with this person.
  • Give the reference person context. Start on a positive note, explaining that you’re hiring for a customer support role and the candidate in question seems like a great fit. 
  • Ask high-level, open-ended questions. Questions like “Is what they said true?” limit the conversation. Instead, ask questions like “What was it like working with this person?” or “What kind of role would this person excel in?”
  • Ask about strengths. For example, ask “What’s a project this person absolutely crushed? What responsibilities did they nail every time?” Ideally, the answers align with the candidate’s self-reported skills and strengths.
  • Ask about challenges. For example, say, “They mentioned [the challenge] at your company. How did they handle that challenge?”. Then, open it up: “What are some other areas of improvement for them?” By framing this positively as improvements, you’ll get more direct feedback about the candidate's rough spots. 

Each call takes fewer than 10 minutes but gives you valuable insight into the highs and lows of working with this person. Again, similar to the deep-dive interview, you’re looking for patterns across reference calls more than any single answer. If the candidate’s answers line up with the answers you get during the reference checks, the candidate has high self-awareness and emotional intelligence — both important qualities in customer service. 

By the time you go through the entire process with multiple candidates, you’ll be certain about the best fit(s) for your open role(s). And once you’ve run this interview process a few times, it will become much more efficient and much less daunting. 

Bonus: How to choose a start date and win over unsure candidates

As we mentioned earlier in this guide, hiring is a two-way street. You have to win a candidate over just as much as they have to win you over. Once you choose a candidate, here’s how to give yourself the best chance for an accepted offer and a successful start.

An illustration of an offer letter: "You're hired!"

Tips for sending an offer letter they’ll want to sign

If all went well, the candidate should be thrilled that you offer them the job. However, they may be considering other offers and it never hurts to demonstrate that you’re a thoughtful employer that’s genuinely excited about working with them.
First, consider giving them a call before sending the offer letter. Most candidates will appreciate hearing the enthusiasm in your voice and getting the news directly from the hiring manager, who they spent the entire process getting to know. Plus, you have the opportunity to get a verbal yes.

When you send the letter, give them a sign-by date. This gives them some parameters, adds a bit of urgency to the decision, and helps you develop a contingency plan with other top candidates in case your top choice declines the offer.

Last, consider asking everyone involved in the interview process to send a personal note to the candidate, especially if the candidate is on the fence. The candidate will end up working with these people, so an authentic and personalized note expressing excitement could make the difference between an acceptance and a declined offer.

Choose a start date that works for candidates and your business

Throughout the interview process, you should clarify when the candidates hope to start. Once you make the offer, don’t be afraid to encourage them to take a week or two off before starting the new job — they’ll appreciate the time off, plus it’s a signal that your company takes preventative measures against employee burnout. And if you’ve moved away from reactive hiring, this shouldn’t be too big of a hassle for your team.

Last, if you’re hiring multiple agents, work to start them on the same day. This way, you can onboard in cohorts, giving each new hire a buddy for support and companionship. Plus, you’ll save time by giving each training session once instead of multiple times for each hire. 

Master Hiring Customer Service Agents with HelpFlow.com and Gorgias

The hiring process isn’t about filling seats, it’s about building a team that strengthens morale, tackles challenges, and ultimately drives your brand forward. While it’s definitely possible to hire agents more quickly, quicker isn’t always better. A single bad experience with a customer service agent can cost you customers and damage brand equity. A team of bad hires can kill the future of your entire company. 

If you rush the hiring process, problems during onboarding, new-hire retention plummets, and the top talent you had before these bad hires start to leave. It’s better to invest time upfront to ensure you only hire A-player team members. 

Want help scaling your customer support team with agents who can provide an amazing customer experience and work with larger company goals in mind? HelpFlow runs customer service teams for over 100 brands and can help you level up your customer service operation. Check out our Gorgias Premier Partner profile and contact us today to learn more.

And if you’re struggling to streamline the workflow of your team and turn customer service into a profit center, check out Gorgias — the customer service platform built for ecommerce. Sign up for a free trial today.

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