Call monitoring remains the most important method of ensuring quality in the contact center. Today, thanks to cloud-based call recording and quality monitoring solutions, or third-party remote call monitoring service providers for companies that don’t have the technology or expertise to do it in-house, it’s easier and more comprehensive. Modern analytics (including speech analytics) makes calls more searchable and easier to archive, and it’s a more streamlined process to turn raw data into actionable intelligence.
Monitoring all calls isn’t the goal of most contact centers. There are industries that are required to do so (such as financial services and healthcare), but for other companies, call monitoring is still a process that costs money, so how many calls do you choose to evaluate to ensure agents are doing a good job and meeting their goals, and the customers’ interests are being met in the contact center?
Craig Antonucci, VP Client Services at third-party remote call monitoring solutions provider BPA Quality, once defined this number as “as many as it takes to improve performance, while not exceeding the cost of quality,” and it’s still a good answer on the topic. The goal of call monitoring is to improve agent performance and pursue customer support excellence.
“When we recommend a sample to a client, we recommend no less than two monitors per week per agent,” according to Antonucci’s blog. “The idea is to create an environment of coaching and feedback. You want the agents to know that they will be getting feedback and have that present in their minds as they take calls…you want them to perform. If you only do one call, and they are coached early in the week, they will figure out quickly that they aren’t being monitored for the rest of the week.”
Agents respond better to feedback that comes regularly and in a timely way. (Dealing with a problem soon after it happens is better than waiting until next month, when the issue is nearly forgotten). Quality monitoring experts note that more is better (within reason) and a daily review and feedback is as close to ideal as a company can get without breaking the bank. Managers may not have the time to monitor, score and coach on a daily basis, but third-party remote call monitoring can turn the process into a daily improvement task with little effort on the part of managers and supervisors.
If agents know they’re being monitored regularly (and receive the follow-up feedback to support this belief), they will consciously improve their performance.