Whether your call center is at the top of its game or struggling to reach important KPI’s, reevaluating the way you do things in order to improve is essential to building and maintaining an optimal workforce.
Here are some tips on how to improve quality score in a call center.
Gather data. Lots of it
Key performance indicators are the bread and butter of the call center industry, and for good reason. Keep a record of every call, when it arrived, how long it took to answer, how long it lasted, who answered it, how many times it was transferred and to whom, and what type of call it was (e.g. sales or service). Use this information, along with feedback from customers, to set goals and monitor KPI’s.
Monitor all channels
If the customer support provided by your call center is omnichannel, then so should be your monitoring system and practices. Too often call centers focus their QA attention on voice calls, but the way in which agents interact via email, live chat, and SMS are equally important.
Make feedback and coaching routine
Rather than giving agents feedback sporadically, why not make it part of your daily or weekly operations? Identify low volume times at your contact center and put this time to good use. Remember that feedback can be positive or negative, and can come in many forms (e.g. survey, scorecard, KPI).
Focus on your low performers
Although it’s certainly important to have a goal-oriented mindset for all of your agents, agents with low performance stats will especially benefit from continuous improvement. Boosting KPI’s of low performers will have the most visible impact on your overall call center scores.
Follow up coaching by tracking improvements
Agents who are simply told what they’re doing wrong are likely to become resentful toward the QA system and its players. Their only goal will be merely to stay off of your radar. Genuinely coaching an agent will prove that you are invested in him/her, boosting both motivation and attrition.
Many people are uncomfortable with the whole “big brother” feeling of being watched from the outside. If you’re looking for a new method for how to improve quality score in a call center, consider investing in real-time data software, like PlayVox, allows agents to track their own stats and customer feedback in real time. Agents will take ownership of their stats, and may even engage in a little friendly competition with themselves or one another to stay engaged.
Motivate your agents
Agents who have energy and focus toward their call center work will deliver higher quality customer care. There are two types of motivation: intrinsic (from within oneself) and extrinsic (external rewards).
External rewards in a call center could include any number of bonuses and perks, but intrinsic motivation is stronger and more long lasting than extrinsic.
Consider offering rewards that have the potential to intrinsically motivate; for example, gamification is becoming a popular means to motivate because it takes the necessary functions of a workplace and makes them fun and competitive.
Employees who enjoy this sort of gratification will be intrinsically motivated to do their best.
Don’t forget the fun
A happy employee is a productive employee. If you want to know how to improve quality score in a call center, don’t neglect the fun factor. Cultivate a workplace in which employees actually enjoy being.
Provide regular breaks that allow agents to drop their headsets and unwind for a few. Bring in a ping pong table or bean bag toss. Invest in a few comfy pieces of furniture and a good coffee machine. Organize a lunch potluck every few weeks. Decorate the office so that it feels like more than a white-walled dungeon.
Employees will feel loyalty toward a company that invests in keeping them happy, and this loyalty and happiness will translate to calls that are upbeat and on point.
Display real-time statistics prominently
Giving your agents a real-time snapshot of how the entire center is working hard together can motivate individual agents to contribute valuably to the team. Consider investing in a projection area that is highly visible to agents which displays statistics that give a glimpse of customer satisfaction and agent productivity.
Invest in smart software
Technology has the potential to streamline the experience for the customer while simultaneously reducing the burden of stress on your agents. For example, routing calls directly from certain areas of the website or having a thoughtfully-developed IVR system means your customers can move through your system to arrive at a solution more quickly, and agents are freed up to work with more complicated customer needs.
Hire selectively, train continuously
The hiring practices in your call center are square one of ensuring a workforce that delivers consistent efficiency and quality. Revisit your hiring techniques to ensure that you are looking at the qualities that best indicate how successful the agent will be.
Furthermore, don’t consider training to be a one-and-done exercise. Although many call centers are loathe to invest too much in training due to high rates of attrition, the investment is worthwhile.
Agents with a solid foundation of training are poised and ready to perform well.
If you’re wondering how to improve quality in a call center, broaden your scope to look beyond only KPI’s. Invest in your agents and your QA process; your agents will win and so will your customers.