The future of customer service is already here. We’re facing a new era in which customers expect to reach you instantly using SMS, social media, video chat, mobile phones and other evolving channels. It all presents big opportunities for the omnichannel contact center — and even bigger questions. How should agents apply soft skills using SMS? How can a business use bots to solve problems without sounding like a machine? And, most importantly, how will your employee training program keep up with the rapid changes taking place right now?

We recently held focus groups to look at these challenges and find ways to solve them for our customers. One thing we heard loud and clear was a need for more education and training to help agents and managers succeed in the new era of customer service. That’s why we’re launching Trailblazers for the Future, a complimentary program designed to empower, deliver, and establish a qualified talent pool of customer service managers and agents by providing them with career growth opportunities within the Salesforce economy.

Since its launch at Dreamforce 2014, Trailhead has been helping people advance their careers by allowing them to grow their skills using guided online learning paths. Trailblazers for the Future takes Trailhead on the road, with hands-on workshops to compliment online learning.

Over the next few months, we’ll be presenting insightful new content with the help of trainers and partners like Customer Contact Week to help prepare managers and agents for the future of customer service. That means covering topics like artificial intelligence and its impact on customer service, best practices for hiring in the omnichannel contact center, and new tools that can help you onboard agents faster.

We know that not everyone can travel to an event in person (even when it’s nearby) so we’re also making Trailblazers for the Future available on Trailhead. There will be over 40 units of bite-sized content online as we continuously launch more modules within our service manager and agent trails. You can learn on Trailhead, assign trails to your employees, or review what you learned in person later on. And, to help our customers provide a consistent, scalable, on-demand, best-in-class agent training curriculum, we are also creating a robust agent onboarding trail.

Lippert Components, our Service Cloud Trailblazer of the Quarter, hosts our first hands-on workshop in South Bend, Indiana, on April 24th during IDEA Week, a new week-long experience in business and technology innovation. Both IDEA Week and The Trailblazers for the Future workshop are provided at no cost but space is limited so register today to reserve your spot.

Whether online or in-person, Trailblazers for the Future is a great opportunity to learn how you can succeed in the new omnichannel contact center. We’ve got more workshops and content coming soon so keep an eye out for updates throughout the year. We’re so excited to kickoff this program and look forward to meeting all of you at Trailblazers for the Future.