Call Center Quality - This Call Actually Is Being Monitored For Quality Assurance

Marc

Retired Old Goat
Staff member
Admin
#1
This Call Actually Is Being Monitored For Quality Assurance

We all know the phrase: "This call may be monitored for quality assurance purposes." However, most people forget it as soon as they hear it. Of course, many calls actually are monitored, and it appears that it's a growing business to monitor those calls. People sit around all day listening to other calls, and note down mistakes or problems in tone. A few interesting tidbits come out of this article. First, often, calls are recorded even if the person is on hold. This means, that someone may listen to what you tell someone else in the room while you're on hold assuming no one is listening. Hopefully, it also means they hear what I say when I mutter about how I don't care how much they appreciate my business while I'm hold, they need to get someone to actually answer the **** phone. More interesting, however, is the fact that this growth in the call center monitoring business actually shows that at least some call centers are realizing there's more to customer support than getting a caller off the phone as quickly as possible. Many of these monitors are charged with grading call center staff on how well they perform in a number of areas, including calming down the angry customer and providing accurate information. In other words, as hard as it may be to believe, some call centers are actually looking at quality, rather than quantity. Still, there are some privacy implications to all of this. How many people, for example, think about the fact that their credit card or other personal identifying information may be listened to by a third party monitoring firm? If an AOL customer service representative can misuse the personal info she found, just imagine how much harder it will be to track down a third party monitor who gets to hear the same info -- but never actually speaks to the person in question.

Your Call (and Rants on Hold) Will Be Monitored

We Don't Support That - We just want to get you off the phone
 
M

Michaelar

#2
Call Centers

I used to work for a few different call centers. Be asured your private informtation is not private! We had a girl that worked for us , that kept a private list of credit cards and then used them to order avon ect to make her sales quota's at her other jobs. She eventually got caught and is now in jail.
However, there are some call centers that really do look at and care about their quality of their services.
But keep in mind call centers do have an incredible amount of staff turn over.
 

Mike S.

An Early 'Cover'
#3
I know someone who takes calls (as an order taker) at home as a private contractor for the kinds of things you see advertized on TV like CD's, nutritional aids, or exercise equipment, etc. She says the calls are monitored mostly to make sure she pushes you (the caller) hard enough on "upsales" -- to get you to buy more or more expensive stuff. Even if you say no, I just want product x, she gets in trouble if she doesn't read you the whole spiel on the upsale anyway. If you continue to object she is told to tell the caller she will lose her job if she doesn't read the whole thing, so they should please let her give them the pitch anyway. These particular companies don't care if you're happy about it, they apparently feel it is worth it to anger a certain number of customers for the upsales they get. :mad:
 

jaimezepeda

Quite Involved in Discussions
#4
Mike S. said:
I know someone who takes calls (as an order taker) at home as a private contractor for the kinds of things you see advertized on TV like CD's, nutritional aids, or exercise equipment, etc. She says the calls are monitored mostly to make sure she pushes you (the caller) hard enough on "upsales" -- to get you to buy more or more expensive stuff. Even if you say no, I just want product x, she gets in trouble if she doesn't read you the whole spiel on the upsale anyway. If you continue to object she is told to tell the caller she will lose her job if she doesn't read the whole thing, so they should please let her give them the pitch anyway. These particular companies don't care if you're happy about it, they apparently feel it is worth it to anger a certain number of customers for the upsales they get. :mad:
I make it a practice to let the phone agent know that I understand they are reading a script and that he/she can save both of us time by just doing what I need for their organization to do for me. It often works. When the phone agent does get pushy I get pushy back (about he/she doing what I asked). However, being nice does go a long way.

Also, some call centers make no provisions for the phone agent to hang up and terminate the call. Only the customer is allowed to end the call. Then when the customer hangs up the phone agent is given the next caller in the queue automagically.

It's amazing what some organizations will do under the guise of "quality assurance."

Jaime
 
Q

qualitygoddess - 2010

#5
It really is used

I had a student in class last semester who worked in a call center (in the US, no less), and her project work explored how that call center's quality monitoring and improvement program worked. It was really interesting reading. First, the was an overall strategic plan with a customer service subset objective for call center quality. There is a system in place for training new recruits and for re-training when new products/processes are added. There was a procedure for call monitoring that every call center employee understood. Random calls were monitored by the quality auditor for each call center employee each month. The calls were analyzed on a set of 10 criteria. The call center employee and the manager was given a weekly report of "pass" rate and a monthly Pareto of all call center issues. Actually, the pareto got added after the student did her research and recommended the use of this tool. These tools were used to provide on-going employee development, and to determine if someone was able to do the job according to the management's expectations.

Overall, I think the student learned how to help her company meets its customer service objectives.
 

jaimezepeda

Quite Involved in Discussions
#6
It really is used.

qualitygoddess said:
I had a student in class last semester who worked in a call center (in the US, no less), and her project work explored how that call center's quality monitoring and improvement program worked. It was really interesting reading. First, the was an overall strategic plan with a customer service subset objective for call center quality. There is a system in place for training new recruits and for re-training when new products/processes are added. There was a procedure for call monitoring that every call center employee understood. Random calls were monitored by the quality auditor for each call center employee each month. The calls were analyzed on a set of 10 criteria. The call center employee and the manager was given a weekly report of "pass" rate and a monthly Pareto of all call center issues. Actually, the pareto got added after the student did her research and recommended the use of this tool. These tools were used to provide on-going employee development, and to determine if someone was able to do the job according to the management's expectations.

Overall, I think the student learned how to help her company meets its customer service objectives.
Thanks for your story.

It is encouraging to learn that there are organizations that do follow through on their quality auditing of call center traffic.

Jaime
 

Top Bottom