How to Find, Train, and Motivate Full-time Support Personnel

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When your Internet business has grown to the point where it is clear that you need a solution for customer support, it's time to create a plan for how you will develop a customer support department. In this article we will take a look at how a small business person might go about finding, training and motivating a support staff.

How to find support staff
You can place ads online to try to find the right people with the experience, knowledge, and desire to provide excellent customer support, or you can work with a virtual assistant agency that already has a stable of support staff that are already trained and doing that kind of work. They can refer exactly the kind of employees that you are looking for.

Another avenue is to ask your colleagues for recommendations of good support staff people that they know of that might be looking for work.

How to train support staff
As a business owner, you know what kind of support you want your customers to receive. You are familiar with your company's products and services, and you know the kinds of questions and concerns that customers have had in the past. You can create scripts for what you would like your support staff to say on the phone when they are talking to customers, and you can even create short, 'how-to' videos that outline processes that they will be guiding customers through either over the phone or during screen-sharing sessions.

How to motivate support staff
For the most part, people want to feel like their work adds value and meaning. A great way to motivate your full time support personnel is to remind them of the critical importance of their customer-facing positions. Their interactions with customers can have a deep and lasting impact on how the company and its products and services are perceived in the marketplace.

Giving support staff goals to work towards, creating high-performing teams that compete against one another for the highest number of resolved trouble tickets, can be a fun way to motivate staff. Awarding prizes for the individuals or teams that make their quota each week is another effective motivator for full time support employees. Finally, making sure that each employee is aware of the path to whatever advancement is available to them is an effective way to keep them motivated to do an excellent job.

The role of your technical and customer support staff cannot be overstated. All it takes is one disgruntled customer with a little bit of free time on his hands and he can set back your company's branding and marketing efforts by spreading lots of bad news about your company and products. Sometimes dissatisfied customers cannot be pleased, but if you have a reliable, trained and motivated support staff, chances are they can make sure that your customers are happy with the transaction so that they keep coming back again and again.

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