BPA Featured Article

Monitoring Complete Customer Interactions in the Call Center Leads to Optimal Performance

By Susan J. Campbell, TMCnet Contributing Editor
December 01, 2006

Call monitoring in the call center is a great method for managers and supervisors to use in order to evaluate the agent and his or her performance. This monitoring, however, must go beyond a simple evaluation of whether or not the agent is reading properly from a script and has hit all key points in the conversation. It must even go beyond measuring how the agent responds to objections and frustration.
The call center leader must be able to focus on the complete customer interaction in order to drive overall contact center performance. By closely monitoring and evaluating the complete interaction, the call center can gain extremely valuable information and data that can be used to improve performance and help drive revenues.
Consider, for instance, the call center agent who is responsible for upselling each customer during the interaction. This particular agent has been consistently missing her quota, yet she is following the script exactly as presented. Simply monitoring her participation in the call will not necessarily enable the manager to pinpoint the problem. While the obstacle could be the tone the agent uses or the speed in which the pitch is delivered, this can not be properly assessed without also measuring the customer’s response.
In addition to monitoring the complete customer interaction between the customer and the agent, the call center leader must also consider each customer issue as one interaction, even if the customer has had to contact the call center more than once. An example is a customer who has made an inquiry via the website which is then forwarded to the proper individual for response. If the customer does not receive a response or feels the information is inadequate, he or she has experienced dissatisfaction with the center.
Even if the customer receives a high level of service when contacting the center a second time on the same issue, the overall interaction is viewed by the customer as an unsatisfactory experience. Without proper monitoring of these interactions, the call center leader will have a false sense of the customer’s satisfaction and problems go unidentified.
Paying proper attention to customer interactions is an absolute necessity for the call and contact center. It can provide valuable insight into the perceptions and desires of the customer. This information can then be used by the organization to foster a more customer-centric strategy. The call center that delivers what the customer demands will be able to realize lower costs, higher revenues and overall optimal performance.
Susan J. Campbell is a contributing editor for TMC and has also written for eastbiz.com. To see more of her articles, please visit Susan J. Campbell’s columnist page.