Related posts:No related photos. DeborahDoyle, employee development manager at Xerox Europe, talks about how e-learningis helping the company maintain high customer relations management standardsDeliveringtraining to large numbers of employees is no mean feat. We have 1,700 staff basedin Dublin at the Xerox European Business Services Centre (EBSC). Within EBSC isa multilingual call centre and customer support function, which employs morethan 1,200 customer service representatives. They handle in excess of 50,000calls per day, covering 20 countries across Europe.Weadopted e-learning so that we could bring the classroom to our employees ratherthan the other way around, and to achieve this we established the Xerox VirtualLearning Environment – an Internet portal that all our call centrerepresentatives can access.Xerox’spolicy is to have 50 per cent of its training on-line by 2002. Having alreadyimplemented web-based IT training we wanted to extend this to cover criticalbusiness skills. We looked at a number of technology-based training providersand chose SkillSoft because of its specific Web offering. Thequality, breadth and depth of the course material was perfectly suited to ourneeds – allowing us to equip our customer service staff with the necessaryskills to deliver first-class support and ensure a consistent level ofprofessionalism across the operation.SkillSoft’straining portfolio is growing at a rate of four courses per week and currentlystands at around 385 courses, so there were lots to choose from. Ultimately,we selected modules across five curricula – communication, customer service,human resources, personal development and teambuilding. We then broke thesedown into specific subject areas that had particular relevance to our needs –interpersonal communication skills; how to excel at customer service;communicating to develop relationships; professional telephone skills; powerfulpresentation skills; managing diversity; taking control of your work day; howto lead a team and managing a customer service orientated culture.HighlyinteractivePeoplelearn best by doing and, by its very nature, soft skills training needs toinvolve people rather than stick insects or pipe cleaner figures. Itwas impressive to see how SkillSoft had managed to replicate personalinteraction within an e-learning environment. The content has one of thehighest interactive designs I have seen. Expressive photography and audio iseffectively utilised within role-play situations to simulate personalinteraction. It’sinteresting too that something is happening every few seconds – so thatlearners have to read, listen, observe, respond and react. Having reviewed thecontent, prior to putting the SkillSoft training in place, we wanted to see howeasy it was to implement and navigate the courses. We also wanted to checktheir inter-operability – ie how they performed on an open platform withcourses from other e-learning providers. We held an open day, during which morethan 700 employees from various departments tried them out. As well as findingthe training stimulating, everyone was able to log on and train simultaneouslywithout any problems whatsoever.GoodstructureSorenMathiesen has a background in customer service, tele-marketing and sales and isa mentor at Xerox Europe. The first SkillSoft course he took was ManagementSkills for the Diverse Workforce. He reported, “Although sceptical abouton-line training, I found that this course was easy to use and really caught myinterest. It has a good structure, useful explanations and gives practicalexamples.“Ialso liked the idea of receiving a certificate of completion at the end.Searchand learn“I’vesince taken many more SkillSoft courses. I can usually complete one module perday. I think they have good content, engaging graphics and a high level ofinteractivity. But my favourite feature is the sound. I don’t have to read thewhole screen – I can just plug in my headset, relax, listen and learn. An addedbonus is that both the text and the audio is in English rather than American,which seems to be unusual with e-learning.“Sofar I’ve found the courses on professional telephone skills, interpersonalcommunication skills and how to excel at customer service the most beneficialto my job, although the theory in the course turning difficult customers intodelighted customers has been very useful when dealing with angry calls fromcustomers in Denmark. I’ve learned something from each one.“I’vealso started to use the Search and Learn facility. If I have something specificI need speedy training on I can type in the subject and within about fiveseconds a list of five to 10-minute instructions on that topic comes up. I canthen complete the training and get straight back on the job.VerdictTeamhad good idea of our needsAlthoughit’s still early days, the results for the usage of SkillSoft courses are veryencouraging. Withinthe first four months, among a sample of around 100 users, 440 training hourswere completed and almost 400 SkillSoft courses were accessed (an average offour per user). The average improvement in scores between pre-assessment (takenat the beginning of a lesson/course) and mastery (taken at the end of a lessonor course) was 66 per cent.Aswell as being happy with the level of knowledge transfer, Deborah is pleasedwith the standard of customer after-sales care provided by SkillSoft –describing it as “second to none”.Thededicated account consultants have a good understanding and have worked withher team to ensure that everything runs smoothly – even to the extent ofproviding marketing support such as executive briefings, presentations andtalks to staff. Previous Article Next Article Effective e-learningOn 1 Jan 2001 in Personnel Today Comments are closed.