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Employee Training

1 Job Aid Your Support Reps Really Need - Part 2

Jonathan DeVore - Mar 22, 2018 10:12:00 AM

This is the second of a 7-part series where we talk about different kinds of job aids that your Support Reps need you to make for them.

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SOPs (Standard Operating Procedures)

These are similar to one-off tasks. The main difference is that a procedure tends to be longer as they require multiple steps. For example, you might need a procedure to:

  • Set up a new customer account 
  • Configure an integration
  • Process a refund

For these kinds of job aids, I DO NOT recommend the same format as the one-off task. Support reps are responding to a lot of customer questions and need to react quickly – so if your procedures are long and take too much time to sift through, mistakes will be made (or your job aids will be ignored altogether).

Instead, go with a checklist. Here's the basic structure:

Title

Short text description.

First Task

Details of how to perform task

Second Task

Details of how to perform task

Third Task

Details of how to perform task

Fourth Task

Details of how to perform task

Not too complicated. Let's check out an example using the ScreenSteps Checklist Article Type:

Checklist-demo.gif

These kind of job aids are awesome for repetitive tasks.

Normally, when you think of a SOP, you envision a long Word doc that's 20 pages long (and NEVER GETS USED!!). A checklist is different. These SOPs are meant to be used on a regular basis so that employees can avoid simple mistakes.

Airline pilots, doctors, and construction project managers use checklists for routine procedures because they work. 

IMPORTANT!!!

At first, support reps might be hesitant to pull up a checklist each time they do a procedure. "I know what I'm doing" will be the excuse.

To increase the chances of adoption, consider 3 ideas:

  1. Make your checklists short
  2. Make your checklists useful
  3. Make your checklists easy to find

Here's a little more detail...

1 - Make your checklists short

It will be tempting to make checklists really long in every possible way.

  • Long titles
  • Long headings
  • Long sections of text

But if you do that, people won't use them. Make the headings short and snappy. Only include the bare minimum to perform the task – a checklist is the not the place to train a user on what to do (we have courses for that). If you want to explain a caveat or go into more detail, consider using inline links.

2 - Make your checklists useful

Don't create checklists just for the sake of making checklists. Write them to help your employees be successful.

If you make a bunch of SOP checklists for procedures that nobody actually does, don't be surprised when nobody uses them. Start by making checklists for the most popular procedures, and write them in a way that really helps your employees out.

3 - Make your checklists easy to find

Use the ScreenSteps Chrome Extension. That's why we made it.

No matter which web page your reps are on, they can pull up your checklist and run through it. 

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Mistakes are costly - use a checklist

Avoiding mistakes saves you money. Creating a checklist prevents mistakes. Thus, checklists can save you money. 

Make them. Use them. Love them.

Topics: Customer Support

Jonathan DeVore

Jonathan DeVore

Customer Success

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1 Job Aid Your Support Reps Really Need - Part 1

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4 Steps to Automate How You Teach New Employees Your Company Policies, Procedures, and Processes

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