A story about Contact Center Software

Friday, September 23, 2005

Have you ever thought about how the customer thought about you?

What do your customers think of you(r call center)? You don't know? Well, why don't you ask them? What do you say, you don't want to spend resources on that? Silly you - you don't need to spend valuable people on that. Listen to me and learn a method on how to ask your customers about the quality (or the lack thereof) your call center and have them answer honestly.
It is very important for you to know what your customers think about your call centers. A client of me has the following proverb above his desk: "What you don't know, you can't measure, and what you can't measure, you can't improve." I guess he's right. You need to know before you can measure and improve.
So how can you know, measure and improve the quality of your call center without spending tons of resources on it? Normally to assess the customers attitude you don't need to ask them a lot of questions. Three or four will be enough. Also, in order to be able to make calculations over the results, there should be no free fields. Lastly, the customer should feel free to answer, and not be hindered by the agent he just talked to. Now, how can we combine all these requirements?
It is easy actually - let the IVR do the work. Let me explain myself. Normally you use an IVR at the beginning of the call to gather information and devise a routing strategy. But the IVR could also be used at the end.
Let me say that again. We are not going to use the IVR at the start but at the end of the call. So in stead of hanging up the call, the caller is transferred to an IVR where he can answer some questions about the quality of service. People will reply more honest to an IVR than to an agent. Of course, you don't need to do this for all of your callers; a certain percentage would be OK.
We have done this for a customer; it works as follows.
Someone calls to the call center and the IVR picks up. Based upon some calculations, it decides that this call should or shouldn't go to the IVR after the call. When it should go to the IVR after the call, this is announced to the caller, and the caller need to confirm that he will participate.
Then the call is sent to the agent (who does not know whether the caller will be queried lateron) and when the agent clicks on hangup, the call is not hung up, but blind transferred to the IVR with the questionnaire.
The IVR asks its questions (how was the service, was the agent nice, etc.) and this data is lateron merged with the data from the call center. Which agent, what time, type of question, etc..
Now you know how your clients are thinking about you. And once you know - you can measure it - and improve it. Why not start off with sending me an e-mail to start a discussion about it?


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4:09 PM

Blogger Tim Stay said...

Nice tip. I referenced your tip in my blog about call centers. I was a former owner of a call center and was always looking for ways to get feedback from the customers and especially cheap ways! Thanks, Tim.

11:56 PM


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