Is It Time to Update Your Call Quality Monitoring Parameters?
by Chris Kontes | April 22nd, 2019
Whether your sales team makes hundreds of outbound calls each day or your customer service call center responds to thousands of customers daily, the call quality monitoring parameters that your team abides by impact your contact center substantially. Your company may currently operate with existing call quality monitoring parameters, but your team may struggle to comply with those parameters.
Everything from how long the customer waits for someone to answer the phone to how well their concerns are addressed impacts their satisfaction with your business. Your company’s image and reputation are affected by how service-oriented and friendly your phone reps are. Whether your call center handles customer service issues, sales calls, collections, or other matters, the interaction between your team and your customers directly impacts your bottom line.
Call quality monitoring parameters are established to provide minimum expectations or standards for your team to comply with. However, many calls do not precisely follow a script that your team is trained to walk through. Human error and inadequate training also impact call quality.
Because call quality impacts numerous essential facets of your business, now is the time to review existing parameters. Are those parameters effective and comprehensive? Are you taking all essential steps to support your call center team while ensuring compliance with established expectations?
Reviewing Your Company’s Existing Call Quality Monitoring Parameters
Commonly, companies record customer service and sales calls for training purposes. Management may select a few calls to use as examples for training sessions. This regular training effort provides essential improvements to enhance the customer experience, promote compliance and boost sales, but is it enough?
These selected examples represent a small percentage of total call volume. They may not prepare your frontline reps with the tools and information they need to handle each call effectively. Furthermore, the lessons that they learn in these periodic training sessions may be forgotten, or your team may lack experience applying the right techniques or options in various situations.
The first step to improve your phone reps’ efforts is to analyze your existing call quality monitoring parameters to ensure that they align with your company’s standards. Common call quality monitoring parameters include:
- Answering income calls within a defined and limited period of time
- Identifying and confirming the customer’s need
- Minimizing hold times
- Maintaining a low escalation rate
- Reading applicable disclosures and restrictions
- Inquiring about additional needs or concerns before concluding the call
Whether your company’s guidelines follow this structure or are customized, each expectation serves a critical purpose. After reviewing or updating your company’s parameters, your attention must turn to how effectively your team complies with these requirements and what you can do to support compliance and improvement.
A Closer Look at Call Quality Challenges
Even the most diligent supervisors cannot monitor every phone call. Furthermore, problematic calls may not always escalate to the supervisor’s level. You cannot afford to have customers hang up feeling unwanted, unimportant or undervalued.
For this reason, live call quality monitoring parameters, which update live in each call as various key elements within the conversation are hit, help guide reps while providing key high-level insights for managers.
By reviewing common challenges that each type of frontline team may face, you can identify critical areas that need improvement in your organization.
Customer Service Call Quality Monitoring Parameters
Customer service calls are usually inbound, so the customer experience begins when they navigate through your automated features to reach a live professional. This process must be efficient, and the initial wait time should be minimal. The customer service agent must immediately identify the customer’s concern and must quickly determine the proper strategy to address the issue to the customer’s satisfaction.
The customer service agent may be trained to walk through a script with each call, but many customers have unique circumstances or concerns that do not follow that script. In these cases, the rep may not provide the customer with suitable options or may place the customer on hold unnecessarily as he or she explores possible solutions. When the rep takes longer than necessary to achieve a suitable outcome, other callers’ initial wait times increase.
To improve the customer experience, your phone representatives must have the support required to address any situation they face effectively. Regardless of the call quality monitoring parameters your company establishes, each rep needs steady, knowledgeable support.
Sales and Prospecting Call Quality Monitoring Parameters
Your sales team may field inbound inquiries or may make cold calls. In both cases, your team may be trained to use a prepared and proven script to generate desired results. However, sales professionals generally must identify and overcome objections in order to make conversions, and these objections may require the professional to customize his or her approach.
Top performers may have mastered effective techniques to maintain a high conversion success rate regardless of the objections that they face. However, there may still be room for your most experienced sales professionals to improve. Your weaker sales reps may struggle to meet established minimum standards because they cannot identify the right strategies to use in the heat of the moment.
Even when a sales rep uses suitable techniques, sales may be lost because of poor soft skills. For example, if a rep speaks too rapidly, interrupts the customer repeatedly or has other communication deficiencies, the customer may be turned off. Furthermore, the customer’s image of your company could be tainted.
When the potential of each call is not realized, your company misses out on money-making opportunities. Finding a way to support your sales reps in real-time with each call is essential in order to increase conversion rates and overall sales numbers.
Billing and Collections Call Monitoring Parameters
The primary responsibility of your debt collectors and billing professionals is to secure funds for services already rendered. While the effectiveness of their efforts directly affects your bottom line, these calls must be completed within ethical parameters and legal regulations, and call quality monitoring parameters should overemphasize compliance as a key priority.
Your most experienced and effective reps are skilled negotiators who can regularly produce results while also professionally representing your company. However, when your reps lack sufficient negotiation techniques, fail to understand options they could present to the customer or fail to maintain compliance standards, your company may suffer. This could result in legal issues, diminished revenue and lost customers.
Regular training sessions foster ongoing improvement, but this does not give your team the continuous support that they need to achieve the best results from each call.
Quality Control and Compliance Parameters
Quality control and compliance are essential components of any inbound or outbound call. When issues escalate, customers may be referred to supervisors or quality control professionals. While these may be well-trained individuals who have profound de-escalation skills, effective negotiating techniques and thorough understanding of compliance and regulatory requirements, mistakes and oversights are possible.
These professionals need regular support to ensure that customers’ needs are met. They must be aware of all the options available and present those options with superior soft skills. Finding an effective way to provide these critical team members with support is essential for improving call quality at all levels.
Incorporating A.I. Technology for Consistently Superior Performance
Refined A.I. technology is now available to improve adherence to call quality monitoring parameters through continuous monitoring and support. Regardless of the type of calls that your team makes or fields, A.I. technology learns superior techniques and responses by monitoring calls, in turn enforcing call quality monitoring parameters live on each call. In real-time, it provides your team members useful reminders, prompts and other helpful feedback because on the information gathered.
These suggestions range from how to improve soft skills in the moment to suggestions for sales add-ons, negotiation strategies and more. Furthermore, Balto’s A.I. can immediately alert supervisors of escalating situations or compliance violations. This enables intervention while the caller is on the phone.
Your supervisors cannot realistically monitor every call, and your team cannot be trained to respond perfectly to every situation. A.I. technology provides the customized support your team needs to handle each call effectively.
How A.I. Improves Call Quality and Call Quality Monitoring Adherence
Incorporating A.I. technology in your call center activities has a profound and beneficial impact on your business. These benefits begin with the service the customer receives, but it extends far beyond that as well. These are some of the many ways A.I. can improve your company’s call quality:
- Assurance of customer satisfaction before the conclusion of each call
- Reduced hold times as your phone reps conclude each call efficiently
- Effective representation of your company’s professionalism and overall image
- Assurance of compliance with regulatory and corporate-level requirements
- Employee development through real-time suggestions and training
- Reduced onboarding and training time required for new agents
- Improved supervisory efforts and results
- Increased ability to overcome objections
Improving your team’s efforts with each call requires you to provide real-time and customized support. To learn more about how you can accomplish this through A.I., contact Balto to schedule a product demonstration.