The largest cost in a customer contact centre being human resources; it is critical that the customer contact centre should be managed effectively and seen as a strategic part of the business.
The past few years have seen many companies giving a high priority to customer relation management for strategic business development. More and more business organizations, all over the world have realized the importance of good customer relations. Not only does it help to retain old customers but also attract more and more of them. In contrast to previous business strategy a few decades back, rather than aiming to provide quantitative Customer support, the thrust now is on the quality of the service provided. To maintain and improve high standards of customer satisfaction, the management today lays extensive stress on call center quality control.
Quality of service provided is closely linked with customer satisfaction. But how do we define a good quality customer service?
The basic foundation of quality service is that when a customer calls, he is made to feel special, all his queries and needs taken care of in a professional friendly manner that too in a time bounded frame. After using a service the customer should feel good and recommend the company's service to anyone he meets!
Quality control revolves around providing the customers with this kind of experience. It is usually implemented by the quality assurance department of a center. These are certain ingredients of a good call, such as courtesy, friendliness, empathy, technical knowledge of the service and of course clear good communication. The quality assurance department makes sure that all of these parameters are met by the agents. Another aspect is to make sure that no abusive language is used by agents. Sometimes an irate customer may call in and this may lead to an altercation of words.
The quality assurance department trains agents to handle these situations without losing their temper. A very important task of customer contact centre quality control is to protect the personal information of customers from unauthorized use. Many customer contact centres deal with such information as credit card numbers, social security numbers, and it is the responsibility of the customer contact centre to make sure these are not misused either by agents or by tertiary parties.
In customer contact centres, the quality of customer interaction has traditionally been measured using quantitative measures of call answering and subjective checks on the quality of the interaction .
That is beginning to change with the appearance of applications specially designed to give customer contact centre managers good quality objective information about how customers feel their interaction has been handled.
Call Quality is a standard scoring/rating system that customer contact centres use to determine how well an agent deals with the customers. There are no industry standards for monitoring quality, but there will usually be a list of criteria that an agent must cover during a call. This includes, but is not limited to, how the agent answers the call, how they navigate the caller to a resolution, and how they end the call.
Customer contact centre staff can be monitored for quality control, level of proficiency, and customer service by computer technology that manages, measures and monitors the performance and activities of the workers.
Typical customer contact centre operations focus on the discipline areas of workforce management, queue management, quality monitoring, and reporting. Reporting in a customer contact centre can be further broken down into real time reporting and historical reporting. The types of information collected for a group of customer contact centre agents can include: agents logged in, agents ready to take calls, agents available to take calls, agents in wrap up mode, average call duration, average call duration including wrap-up time, longest duration agent available, longest duration call in queue, number of calls in queue, number of calls offered, number of calls abandoned, average speed to answer, average speed to abandoned and service level, calculated by the percentage of calls answered in under a certain time period.
Many customer contact centres use workforce management software, which is software that uses historical information coupled with projected need to generate automated schedules to meet anticipated staffing level needs.
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