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If you’ve called a wireless providers to change your service, an online company to place an order, an airline to book a ticket, or a healthcare plan to update your coverage, you’ve likely talked to an Alorica employee.

With more than 100,000 employees across the globe, Alorica is one of the biggest customer experience providers in the world. In the past three years, the company has grown more than four times—staggering growth for a company in any industry.

Part of the reason for Alorica’s amazing success has been its ability to stay ahead of trends and changes. Alorica relies heavily on data to manage the performance of people—whether that’s its own employees or its clients’ customers. According to Alorica chairman and CEO Andy Lee, the company has invested heavily in science and algorithms to understand people’s personalities. It’s similar algorithms that match potential love interests in online dating, expect these algorithms match potential employees with the right team and customers with the best customer service agent.

As technology changes, Alorica must stay ahead of advances in AI and machine learning. Over the last few years, many mundane tasks have been automated, leaving employees with more time to interact with customers and create meaningful experiences.

But that growth doesn’t come without difficulties, Lee said. One of the most useful skills for the future of work is critical thinking, but it’s a skill that a large part of the workforce hasn’t developed or used with their repetitive tasks. As technology eliminates the need for humans to answer repetitive and simple questions, people are tasked with answering more complex questions. Critical thinking plays a huge role in understanding the context of what a customer really wants and needs.

Alorica’s approach to teaching critical thinking and other skills for the future is surprisingly simple, but incredibly effective. Instead of creating huge, overarching programs and week-long training sessions, Alorica has embraced the need to keep things short and simple.

Today’s employees are used to having quick access to things. There’s a reason many people can sit through short YouTube videos but not full-length movies. Attention spans are getting shorter. Modern employees learn best in short bursts. With that in mind, Alorica’s training system invests heavily in micro-learning. Employees learn content with short 5-10 minute videos. Aside from being more enjoyable for employees, this method of training is also incredibly effective. Lee says it has helped Alorica employees retain 20% more information and eliminated re-training by 80%.

Paired with micro-learning, Alorica also creates opportunities for employees to role play in group sessions. A group of customer service agents might listen to a phone call with a customer, discuss what did and didn’t go well, and then practice what they would do in the situation. The group environment creates a safe place where people are comfortable asking questions.

Technology will change the face of the future of work and customer service, and Alorica is right there automating many of its processes. Training and critical thinking go hand in hand with technology. Alorica proves that investing in technology, data, and updated training systems can help drive growth that creates satisfied customers and future-proof employees.

Listen to Alorica CEO Andy Lee on the Future of Work Podcast here.

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