In the field of contact center software solutions, it is the quality of the customer interactions that make the key difference. The whole arena of cloud call centers revolve entirely around the customer and the customer’s interaction with the brand. When we speak of customer interactions, we usually refer to the agents; that is because, the agent acts on behalf of the company and represents the company to the customer.
Naturally, it is important to monitor the quality of these customer interactions. As of 2016, there are different modes of communication that are used in call centres like text messaging, emails, live chat and so on and so forth. However, the phone call still remains the primary mode of communication even today.
As a matter of fact, that is a boon in disguise; that is because there are several kinds of contact center software which can allow you to monitor your calls. Monitoring the quality of calls made by your agents doesn’t simply include the customer interaction- it goes a little beyond that.
For instance, the agent’s work post call must also be taken into account. How long does he make the customer hold? Is he able to provide efficient solutions to customers? Is he consistent in his efforts? These are some questions that must be answered through the call monitoring system.
Now, there are few things to keep in mind while monitoring calls. The quality of your call monitoring is of the utmost importance. It can be very easy to get hold of a call monitoring contact center reporting software and implement it into your operations. But how do you know you’re doing it right? Or even that it is working? As the manager of a call center or the leader of your customer service team, you need to learn how to make the most of resources in hand.
Given that you have the best customer service software applications at your disposal, you need to keep in mind a few tips that will tell you exactly how and why you should go for quality monitoring software.
1. Basically, call quality monitoring can help you work on the minute details. When it comes to customer interactions, it is important to nail the little details if you want to succeed.
For instance, using the best outbound contact center solutions, greeting customers in a polite manner, and using the positive phrases that can enhance the customer interaction – these are some of the things that can improve the quality of a call. Now, call monitoring helps you work on these. You can prevent negative habits from ruining the quality of your call with effective monitoring.
2. Quality call monitoring is all about gathering information. During the process, you come across several bits of information and data- some of which may even appear trivial to you. However, that is not the case. If you truly want to make the most of your call monitoring services, then you need to use all the information you gather. It is important to go beyond simply monitoring the calls and looking at the bigger picture.
3. If you thought that contact center management software for call monitoring was all hi-tech and expensive, think again. If your call center doesn’t have much of a budget when it comes to such latest and well developed software, it’s okay! It really is! You don’t have to go and get the best software available in the market (since it is bound to cost more); you can just get a basic monitoring software and be on your way! Remember, some level of call monitoring is always better than absolutely no monitoring at all!
4. When you first bring up the topic of call monitoring, most of your team members might be a bit apprehensive; because there a misconception or a stigma that call monitoring means they would be under scrutiny. As the team leader, it is your duty to clarify and establish that it is not so at the very beginning. Call monitoring should be a team activity – something that requires a collaborative effort on part of everyone involved. Your employees shouldn’t feel like you’re trying to be critical.
5. It is important to get adequate support and feedback. When you incorporate a new software for contact center, you need to keep an eye on it. Is it functioning the way it should? Is it fulfilling its duties? Is it helping you and your employees? If you have answered no to the above questions, then clearly the software you’re using isn’t working for you and it might be time for a change. Feedback from all the members of the team is of the utmost importance.
6. When you get quality call monitoring, there is one other thing you need to keep in mind. Who or what is evaluating the data you have obtained from call monitoring? After all, that is one of the most (if not, the most!) crucial aspect of the whole process. Unless you have the best contact center software that evaluates all your call monitoring, it really defeats the whole purpose. You need to identify someone dedicated, responsible and enthusiastic enough to oversee all operations in this field.
7. To some, the time and money that you spend on your call monitoring might be a waste. These people lack an insight into the bigger picture and do not have the vision you do. Remember, the time you spend trying to perfect something is never wasted. After all, customer interactions form the basis of your business as a whole. Thus, a large part of your time and money SHOULD go into quality monitoring to ensure that your agents are doing what they are supposed to.
8. Also, at your call center, you must have a system for rewarding the best agents. Call monitoring makes that easier. When you monitor the calls of all your agents, you get valuable information in hand which tells you exactly how your agents are performing. It also tells you which agent is putting in an extra effort or who is lagging behind. Also, once your agents know that they are being monitored, they’re going to be motivated to work twice as efficiently.
9. As a call centre manager or team leader, you would be listening in on a number of calls. Isn’t that your duty, anyway? Now what you can do is save the best calls you have. When you listen to all the calls that have been recorded, you might come across a gem of a call where the agent handled the complicated situation perfectly and passed the test with flying colours. Such a call may be used as an example at various training programs or can be used to help other agents. Call monitoring software allows you to do this with ease.
10. Before you purchase and implement a customer contact center software, you need to draw up a well chalked out plan. The call monitoring plan is the over you should follow down to the last detail. From the kind of software you use to the people who would be evaluating the data you obtain, you need to have a solid plan in place before you start any kind of call monitoring.
11. When it comes to call monitoring, you must be having a clear idea of what is good and what is bad, what is acceptable and what is not. Based on that, you would be judging the calls. Not just you, your employees too should share the similar idea.
When you start call monitoring at your call center, it is very important to define exactly what is expected from your customers and what would be considered outrageous. Your agents can then continue with their work accordingly.
12. Implementing a new contact center software means that you would have to invest a significant amount of time into coaching and training. The whole concept is new to you and to your agents. Naturally, it is important to organise an extensive training program which gives you an idea of the dos and don’ts and gives your agents some helpful pointers.
13. Usually, customer care reps follow scripts when it comes to customer interactions. the script would also be monitored as part of the call monitoring process. Thus, it would be better if you could monitor the scripts beforehand. Work on your script, pour over it, go over the minute details and rectify it.
14. It can be pretty difficult to be objective when it comes to monitoring the calls of your own objectives. While monitoring the quality of your calls, a clouded judgement is the last thing you need. Did you know that there are several independent facilities that offer call monitoring? You can give one of these facilities a try!
15. You need to get your hands on evaluation forms. Such a form would be asking the right questions that can help you get an idea of where your business stands. It would include questions like “are you getting the right results?”.
16. You also need to listen to your agent’s side of it. After the call monitoring process has been completed, you need to have the data evaluated. Now in case your agents feel that the evaluation has been unfair or that it isn’t accurate, then they should have the opportunity to dispute it as well. That paves the way for a wholesome call monitoring procedure.
17. When you start out with something new, everything seems hunky dory and seems to be working perfectly fine. However, as time passes by, there’s always a tendency to fall behind and you tend to stop caring for the results. You might even take it for granted, which is even worse. Thus, the key to ensure that you get the best results is to keep updating your software, put in effort consistently and genuinely work on the results.
18. When your agents know that their calls are being recorded, that induces stress an panic and their customer interaction might take the fall for it. Why don’t you just get hold of a software application that allows you to record the calls quietly from the background? That doesn’t make the agents feel like they’re being watched all the time and puts them at ease as well.
19. Your agents are perfectly capable of self assessment. You’ve done all that is remotely possible. You’ve attained a well functioning software that allows call monitoring, you’ve appointed someone responsible enough to evaluate the data obtained from it and you’ve also provided sufficient training and coaching to your agents, now it is their duty to assess the results and pull up their own socks.
20. Last but not the least, you need to clearly state what it is that that you hope to achieve from the call monitoring and what according to you is acceptable. This needs to be clearly defined and established at the very beginning, even before you install the software system.
The case study
At this stage, you are pretty familiar with what call monitoring is, how it can help you and why you need it. If you haven’t used it already, then you’re probably thinking that you don’t need it. However, this case study will show you exactly why you need it and why you need it today itself. The brand name of HSBC must be pretty familiar to all of you. Grupo Financiero HSBC is the Mexico branch that oversees most of the banking functions in the region. Like all other financial organisations, customer service is of the prime importance to this company as well. They weren’t satisfied with the ordinary customer service or the basic call monitoring system that was prevalent in the company. They wanted something more. Let’s take a look at what they did.
The final outcome
The company clearly stated that they were looking for a technologically enhanced and well developed quality call monitoring facility that would give them an edge. This is what they needed:
• A software that is perfectly compatible with their CTI application
• A software that would record all kinds of screen data
• Evaluation forms
• eLearning options in the call centers
• efficient management of all kinds of transactions
As a result, the company started a new policy of call monitoring which came with a number of benefits. Some of them are as follows:
• Once the procedure was implemented, agent performance improved to a great extent.
• Costs went down at a magnificent rate
• Agents are better trained now and that reduces the need for continuous training programs
• There is targeted and personalised training or coaching for all the agents. Such a program is carved out by taking into account the individual requirements and demands of each agent.
• It has become easier to judge the strengths and weaknesses of the agents. Based on that, their performance can be judged and measures may be taken.
• The monitoring system used previously was slow and time consuming. The new system, however, only takes a couple of seconds.
There is no dearth of great software applications that allow you to monitor calls. All you have to do is take the leap, and wait to make the most of the results!