We all are very well aware of the fact that almost all the companies around the world rely on their customer service agents skills for gaining new customers as well as for retaining their old ones.
But, with the increase in demand of service, the supply of service has also increased drastically. Thus, it has now become mandatory for all the call centers to give a great quality service to their customers or else they can easily loose a customer to their rivals.
Apart from the fact that using the latest and effective management tools like the best call center software along with trusted and successful strategies can contribute a lot in delivering an exceptional service experience.
There are certain tips and techniques that can make sure that you give nothing but the best to your customers. And that method is call quality assurance.
A call center quality assurance plays a significant role in enhancing the quality of service provided by the call center and their agents.
Thus, it adds in improving the customer satisfaction level, correcting any errors in process and strategies before it causes loss of business and revenue to a contact center.
So, in this article, we will learn about the best practices needed to create quality assurance strategies and its importance in increasing the service level of a contact center.
But first, let’s see how quality assurance is defined in a layman’s term.
What is quality assurance?
Quality assurance (QA) is a method which focuses mainly on preventing defects in the manufactured product or service.
It also ensures that the quality of the product meets the desired outcomes so as to provide customers with a great service experience.
Quality assurance includes 2 main principles:
1. Fit for the purpose: The product manufactured should be suitable for the intended purpose.
2. Right first time: It aims to achieve the desired quality product right in the first attempt itself thus trying to eliminate the mistakes.
Advantages of quality assurance:
Apart from helping a call center in providing a great service experience to their customers, there are a lot of other benefits of having a quality assurance program in your contact center. Some of them are as follows:
1. Track progress: Using various methods of quality assurance like call recording, call barging, and agent’s scorecard can be used for tracking an agent’s performance.
With the help of these methods the management can check call center service quality and at the same time, it can be used to identify the underlying performance issues of the agents and the overall process followed by the contact center.
2. Helps in building a healthy work environment: Since quality assurance involves self-evaluation and it promotes teamwork which indirectly helps a call center in building a collaborative work environment which is the basis of successful business.
It also helps in bringing a sense of equality among the team members which can results in better performance when working collectively.
3. Helps in meeting targets: Meeting their goals and business targets is of utmost importance for any business, as the efficiency and productivity of any business depend on these attributes.
Thus with the help of quality assurance programs and strategies a call center can make sure that the strategies are not only beneficial in serving the customers in a better way but also helps them in meeting their business goals so as to increase their business reach and profit margins.
4. Gain knowledge about weak areas: One of the main objectives of having a quality assurance program is to look for the ways to eliminate errors from the system or service provided.
Thus, with the help of user’s feedback a call center can gain a detailed understanding of the limitation and other business aspects.
Once they have that information they can work upon, remove those limitations from the system and hence aim for the new and enhanced business opportunities.
Now, that we know what is quality assurance and the advantages it offers to a contact center.
I am sure you must be looking for ways to build an effective quality assurance strategy for your call center. So, let’s have a look at some of the best practices for QA.
Best practices for better quality assurance in call centers:
The below suggested tips can help contact centers in developing a more effective and advanced approach to quality assurance.
1. Appoint a Quality assurance officer: By appointing a specialized QA professional the call centers can make sure that the QA tactics followed by them are capable of meeting customer’s expectations and fulfill their needs.
Along with that, the contact center can also create a more thorough QA program for better quality management.
2. Effective use of customer feedback: Customer’s feedback is a great way to understand the areas that require improvement as no customer will give a negative if it meets their presumption.
Thus, using customer’s feedback’s which can be obtained from your call center can be very much beneficial for making an effective QA process.
3. Monitoring of calls and data: With the help of various performance monitoring tools available in the market and with the call recording, the features of the call center software, the management can easily gain valuable insights about what are the constituents of a great customer experience.
Using all these information from the calls and other performance metrics, the QA team of the contact center can design their quality assurance strategies which can be helpful in improving the overall service experience for their customers.
4. Invest time in training: To be able to keep up with the latest trends and the advancement in digital technologies, it is very much essential that the call center agents are aware of every CRM, call center solutions used and updates etc so that they can assist customers in resolving their queries quickly and provide better service.
But this will only be possible if the call center management makes an effort of organizing frequent training sessions for their agents so they can brush up on their skills.
5. Promote Self-evaluation: Encouraging agents to monitor and evaluate their own performance while interacting with the callers can also contribute to improve the service quality.
This not only guarantees the agent’s improved performance but also make the agents feel that they are a critical part of the business thus encouraging them to perform better.
It also frees up the managers or supervisors time which they can utilize in addressing other important queries.
6. Use of practical call scripts: A lot of call centers make a big mistake in creating a very complicated call scripts which includes using a large number of technical jargons thinking that this will help their agents in sounding more knowledgeable and professional.
But, what they don’t understand is that not all the customers are competent enough to understand all the technical jargons as they are not regular users of their product or service.
Thus, using a simple and realistic call script which can help agents in effectively handling various customer queries should also be used so that the customers feel more comfortable while interacting with an agent.
7. Frequent performance checks: It is an obvious thing to say that a large number new of business opportunities depends a lot on an agent call handling skills.
Thus it becomes necessary for the contact center to keep a track of an agent performance with the help of strict performance evaluation metrics on regular basis or else it can cost them losing an existing or a potential customer.
And because of this reason an agent’s performance while interacting with a customer is critical for providing a quality service experience.
The case study we will consider this is about an e-commerce and electronic payment company which allows customers to do payments through mobile.
The company was founded back in 2010 and has been performing well since 2015. The company has its call center set up in various cities and uses the latest in-demand call center software solutions for their day-to-day activities.
However, with the increase in digitalization in every field the company’s product was in great demand.
But as the product was new for a lot of users, the call centers agents have to deal with a large call volume on daily basis.
Because of the large call volume, the agents started focusing more on answering queries rather than on customer service experience.
Due to this behavior of agents, the call center saw a dip of 5% in CSAT score in a quarter when compared to the last 2 quarters.
Also, the customer’s feedback showed that even though they did find the product very useful, the lack of documentation and usage information about the product is making it difficult for them to use it properly.
As the management was aware of the large call volume and the low CSAT scores they decided to make a QA program for their call center to get back on track and deliver good results again.
The management made following changes which helped them in providing assured quality performance.
1. To resolve the high call volume the management immediately hired experienced customer service professionals so that the call volume can be managed effectively.
2. As the recently hired agents were new to the product they provided them with detailed product knowledge from their best agents as well as the developers, so that they can gain enough knowledge about the product to answer every customer query.
3. Using the call recording, they located the low-performing agents and trained them again along with newly hired agents so that they can improve on their weaknesses.
4. For common frequent queries, the management published various documents that contained steps in those queries thus resulting in less call volume.
5. Along with the documents they also made various tutorials on their product features, so that users can take full advantage of every feature that their product offers.
• With the help of all these above techniques, the management was not only able to reduce the call volume but also gained customers trust again.
• Also, a lot of customers showed their appreciation to the company for considering their feedback valuable and adding the requested tutorials about the product by giving good ratings to their product and recommending it to others as well.
This helped them in gaining new customers and increasing their business reach.
• As the number of agents increased in every contact center and the call volume decreased, the agents were again focusing on quality of service which resulted in improved CSAT scores.
Thus, from this article, we can see how important role quality assurance can play in improving the customer service experience as well as in the business expansion.
If only, you are able to satisfy your existing customers and meet their expectations there is no doubt, they will definitely appreciate and recommend your product or service.
If you also think that quality assurance can be useful for your contact centers productivity then you can also use these tips to make an effective quality assurance program for the better management and giving great service to your customers.