BPA Featured Article

Call Monitoring Helps to Drive Measurable Benefits to the Call Center

By Susan J. Campbell, TMCnet Contributing Editor
December 03, 2010

Every customer calling into a call center has heard the message: “This call may be monitored for quality improvement,” or some variation. The point is they are receiving notification that call monitoring is taking place within that call center. But some may be wondering – does call center monitoring really work?

Auditing agency BPA recommends that call centers monitor their agents no less than twice a week. To ensure the organization gets the most out of their programs, these calls should be analyzed and agents should receive some sort of feedback on their performance as often as daily. And, if the call center manager wants to continue to drive increased performance and quality among the agent base, constant reinforcement is a must.

To ensure you can deliver effective call monitoring, start with the Hawthorne Effect. This concept suggests: an experimental effect in the direction expected but not for the reason expected. In other words, a significant positive effect that turns out to have no causal basis in the assumed motivation for the intervention, but is instead due to the effect on the participants of knowing they are being studied in connection with the outcomes measured.

To simplify it even more – humans will perform at a higher level if they believe someone is keeping track of them. This has scientifically been proven to be true, suggesting that call center managers should give the impression that agents are monitored at all times. Agents will perform better overall if they know someone is listening to their calls.

There are a number of reasons why call center managers should monitor agents while on calls. These reasons extend beyond better performance to measurable improvements on the calling floor.

First, call center monitoring can help to drive lower call volumes. For every call that can be eliminated, you do not have to spend money on the interaction. This means you can higher fewer agents, fewer management, leverage less telephony and minimal infrastructure to accomplish your goals.

Second, there is a close tie between lower call volumes and lower call times. This helps to reduce cost in all of the same areas. And, if agents are handling customers effectively and efficiently, call time will drop and money will be saved.

Third, call monitoring helps to drive higher numbers in first call resolution. This helps to lower call volumes and keep customers happy and loyal, saving money overall.

Fourth, call center monitoring helps to improve agents to the point that they can sell additional products and services to the client base. A happy customer is a buying customer – which drives higher revenues and profits.

Finally, customer satisfaction is more readily achieved with call monitoring. When you can be sure that every customers leaves an interaction satisfied, you know the base is protected and you can continue to drive sales through a loyal base.

Susan J. Campbell is a contributing editor for TMCnet and has also written for eastbiz.com. To read more of Susan’s articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Chris DiMarco