Canada Association of Tourism Employees

Distant Buyer Assist Groups: Make On-line Coaching Accessible

Learn how to provide accessible online training to your remote customer support team

A few decades ago, the only “remote” workers were door-to-door salespeople. But with the advent of technology and the convenience of the Internet, a large proportion of the workforce is working outside of the office. Not all of them are field workers. Some have desk jobs in multinational offices or in rural areas. These workers need the same level of training and resources as their compatriots at headquarters. How can you ensure that your learning experiences are consistent for all of your employees? Let’s look at 7 ways to make online training accessible to your remote customer support team.

7 tips to improve online training accessibility

1. Offsite access

Regional offices are usually smaller than the main office. This means that their facilities are different. If they are in another country or in a marginalized or non-urban area, they may be unable to access the internet. To make up for this, the majority of your training materials should be available offline. Instead of using live web training, you can download study materials to specific phones or tablets. These pre-installed training materials can then be made available to your external employees. Invest in an LMS that allows offline access so everyone on your remote customer support team can benefit from training tools.

2. Wearable training

One aspect of mobile training is the use of offline gadgets. However, give access to mobile apps to employees who have internet access but mainly work in the field. You can log in whenever connected and learn in bursts. This could actually be cheaper since you don’t have to buy specific electronics. Trainees can simply install their learning apps on their existing phones. No hardware upgrades are required. Just test the app on different brands and operating systems to confirm compatibility. Also, consider creating a podcast that customer support teams can listen to on the go. This is also ideal for employees with visual impairments.

3. Strive for relevance

When you’re designing content for co-workers who you don’t see every day, scope is critical. They don’t need the same skills that your office team needs. The difference can be caused by the job description or the physical location. Talk to your remote workers and ask them what training they want. You can also review your base material and leave out topics that are not relevant to your external partners. Provide them with simulations, scenarios and real-world examples that put everything into context. For truly accessible online training, use the microlearning route to quickly impart experience and knowledge so it’s easy to consume.

4. Create training pairs

Exercise programs are more successful when you have a training partner. This applies to both a cross-fit gym and a marathon workout. Your partner will increase your competitive spirit and get you going if you want to skip a session. Form pairs or trios on your team with one member sitting in the HQ and the other away. You can collaborate on training activities and everyone will gain some of their partner’s knowledge base.

5. Use the correct equipment

The training bases for mobile workers are different. In the main office, you likely have a power outage generator. Field workers need long-life batteries for their training equipment. When you go for mobile apps and tablet programs, buy devices that are known for their standby time. Or you could create a Kindle course. These e-readers can last for weeks on a single charge. Of course, this should not take the place of a fully interactive online course. But it can be a valuable way to give your remote customer support team more accessible JIT training.

6. Use social media tools

It is important that your team sticks together not only for training, but also for overall success. You have to see yourself as a unit. This means that even if their “home base” is far away, they should have regular opportunities to interact with colleagues. Start a closed group exclusively for your remote customer support team. Here they can share tips, tricks, and experiences that others might find useful. You can simply log into the social media platform to quickly read about training updates or get support from colleagues. Online forums and blogs are also beneficial when you are in an emergency and need help at short notice. For example, you can check the archives to see if a similar situation was discussed and see how your colleagues met the challenge.

7. Include contextual translations

Customer care professionals who work remotely are likely to speak a different language. It can be a call center or a foreign office. Allow them to access their online training materials in their preferred language. Make sure it’s a well-done translation, not an automated one that has been taken over by Google. This increases the understanding and loyalty of your company employees. You should also add closed captions or subtitles for employees with special needs. For example people with hearing impairments.


Probably the toughest job in any company is sales, closely followed by customer care. You have to deal with angry customers all day. And since they are not physically involved in day-to-day activities, they may become isolated from the team. This is both geographical and psychological. Equip them with the right tools and skills for this difficult task. Enable offline access to your course content via tablets and mobile devices. Ask them what specific skills they need to keep their courses relevant. Pair them with in-house staff and look for ongoing support on social media. They will work better when they feel part of the team.

Does your customer support team struggle with daily complaints? Account managers often bear the brunt of complaints and disgruntled consumers. Read article 7 Pitfalls To Avoid When Onboarding New Employees To Your Customer Service Department To Get The Most Out Of Your Customer Service Reps While Ensuring Your Customers Have The Best Experience Possible.


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