As we move closer towards the finish line of the current financial year, it would appear the majority of businesses are seeking ways to improve the performance of their business to ultimately drive better returns.
If you are a project sponsor, service champion or leader who has been given the task to drive service transformation in the business, and you are tackling the issue of knowing what to spend on customer service training (time and money) and what Return On Investment (ROI) to expect, this blog is for you.
There are three steps you can take to define your ROI narrative or message back to the business:
1. Determine the right measures of the business that will be impacted by the service training program.
There are Lag measures and Lead measures. You want to measure the Lead measures regularly to determine how close you will be to achieving your lag measure target.
Lag measures are ultimately the most important thing we are trying to achieve in business but once you know them they are history, they are a reflection of the performance that drove them that is already in the past. Eg. Sales, Revenue & Profit, Customer Loyalty in satisfaction surveys and repeat clients and Employee Engagement and retention.
Lead measures are a measure of the highest impact thing that you must do as a team to reach the outcome. It needs to be predictive, and it can be influenced by the team. These are the key activities in achieving your lag measures. Eg. Number of rewards and recognition, tracking service moments in meetings, tracking coaching conversations for service improvements, displaying customer success stories and customer complaints and so on.
2. Take into consideration the current inflation rate.
Match your per-person training budget to the same % as the inflation minimum. (eg. If inflation is 1.75 %, budget 1.75% of someone’s salary into professional development) Many companies offer a small percent annual raise to their employees for doing nothing more than the same job. Reinvest your labour cost adjustment to help adjust your people development and performance.
3. Decide what other support/ resources are needed to support the training.
Training in isolation will not create change and you will need additional support to drive the key messages and punctuate the moments in the workplace.
If you take these first three steps in getting very clear about what it is you will be tracking, watching the progress and ultimately measuring along with calculating a true cost and budget for training per person, you will be well prepared to decide the ROI on a customer service training program and sell the message into the business.