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call center quality assurance
February 20, 2021

Customer Call Center QA: Quality Assurance or Quality Advancement?

call center quality assurance

Quality Assurance, evaluation, compliance—whatever it’s called, evaluating customer communication is both commonplace and an essential cog in the contact center wheel. Your goal is to look beyond Minimum Acceptable Standards and make every evaluated call result in performance improvement.

Experienced professionals pore over call recordings or other customer interactions, grading against the weighted scorecard metrics that dictate the quality of interaction, providing in all likelihood a score and whether it met the minimum acceptable standard set. Could it ever be described as call center coaching?

What a wasted opportunity!

Minimally acceptable standard? Is that what today’s uber-competitive market requires? Do our customers crave a minimally acceptable standard of communication?

Even where a complex score matrix can provide agents, managers, and coaches rich feedback on the strengths and weaknesses of a call or other interaction, highlighting what went well and didn’t, the path to Quality Advancement is often a slow, laborious, and fragmented one at best.

In a world of instant gratification, what does this experience typically look like for an agent? Let’s take the following not untypical examples:

Good Call: A strong score, I passed with flying colors. Happy agent. 86%.

Breakdown: But the opportunities to further improve those few areas where a ‘good’ call could have been a ‘great’ call, which has been identified (the few points dropped or OK moments or responses) by the QA team may never be used to improve performance.

Perhaps the agent gets a score breakdown but does not replay coachable moments. Those playbook moments that contributed to a good score are rarely profiled or shared. Now that would have made the agent feel good!

Acceptable Call: Some parts were great, truly playbook. Others were frankly a missed opportunity and certainly could have been better. But overall, it was a pass.

Breakdown: “Yay me!” says the agent. “I reached the minimum acceptable level, on to the next call then where I can carry on (being average)!”

Perhaps (long after the call took place), the agent may be taken off the floor for ‘coaching.’ The call may be replayed and perhaps get some pointers. At least on some average calls.

Poor Call Breakdown:  Ironically, the best chance of improving performance. The agent is taken off the floor, the call is replayed and the manager, team leader or coach identifies and interprets the reasons the QA team flagged the call the agent can barely remember. It’s pretty demoralizing and hardly an inspiring experience.

Let’s jump back to our QA team. They are identifying these coachable moments that contribute to our lost points—and our playbook moments that deserve profiling, praise and sharing. But all we get is a score, a pass or a fail.

It doesn’t have to be like this.

What if just those coachable moments had been tagged, then shared with feedback directly from QA? If examples of the same scenario were shared, with a coaching investment of minutes if not seconds and without taking an agent off the floor? Frequent, bitesize coaching moments and praise, directly from the same time investment from QA.

Likely coachable moments can be identified, automatically tagged from a transcript based on words or phrases used or searched for and tagged retrospectively, minimizing the investment of time to find moments of praise, ideas or corrective feedback.

So are you assuring quality or advancing it? Conversation Intelligence—a consistent way to record and analyze customer conversations—can help you gain more business value from your evaluation, QA, or compliance process.

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