What is the purpose of quality assurance in a call center?
If you’re focused on improving the quality of your customer service, you have probably looked at setting up a quality assurance process. This article will explain the importance and purpose of quality assurance in your call center or customer service department.
The importance of call center quality assurance
Call center quality assurance is the process of monitoring and analyzing your service team’s customer conversations. QA and team leads use QA software to easily assess these conversations against quality criteria. This ensures your teams are achieving their goals and your customers’ expectations.
The overall purpose of a good call center QA process is to pinpoint performance problems, coach effectively, and improve quality standards.
5 reasons quality assurance is essential for every customer service team
From operational efficiency to customer retention, an effective QA framework is important both internally and externally. Here are 5 reasons you need quality assurance in your call center customer service team.
Consistent service quality
Maintaining a consistent quality of service across your entire organization is one of the greatest challenges for customer service teams. Especially those in contact centers.
This can be for a number of reasons, such as:
- Offices are located in multiple locations
- Lack of communication between office managers
- Language/cultural miscommunications
- Absence of uniform quality criteria
Inconsistencies in your service are not only operationally inefficient but can also be detrimental to your customer’s experience. Agents can easily lose touch with the personality, tone of voice, and branding of your business.
Setting up a QA process establishes one clear standard of service across all of your customer service teams. It allows you to decide on the quality criteria every customer conversation is measured against.
By clearly communicating those standards, you provide guidelines and targets for what it means to provide quality service. This clarity will help your team improve their performance whilst also providing a consistent, on-brand customer experience across the board.
Pinpointing performance outliers
Like any issue, improving your team’s performance is made easier when you know exactly which areas they need help developing. An effective QA process analyzes the performance of every individual agent.
Identifying improvement areas is done by using a QA criteria checklist to analyze your team’s customer interactions. The more specific your criteria, the more granular and customized your feedback and coaching will be.
Here are some of the items you can analyze your agent’s performance on:
Perhaps an agent’s tone was great. However, they neglected to educate the customer on how to be self-reliant in finding an answer. Maybe they solved the customer’s issue quickly, but their tone wasn’t friendly and they forgot the welcome greeting.
Using a detailed criteria checklist will allow you to create individual performance improvement plans (PIP). This will ensure each agent’s service quality is well-rounded.
Improving coaching efficiency
Now that you have extensive data on each of your agents’ performance quality, it’s time to put it to use. The purpose of pinpointing performance weaknesses with QA is to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of your feedback and coaching.
Imagine managing a team of 50 agents, in which each team member has differing strengths and areas needing improvement. Holding a group quality training session on a certain topic will only be applicable for some agents and irrelevant for others.
For example, you hold a group coaching session on the topic of the tone of voice. While some of your agents will benefit from the lessons, others may already be experts on the topic.
However, by using performance data from your QA program, you will know exactly who needs to improve and where. This can either be 1:1 or done by segmenting your team into certain workshops based on quality trends.
Through the effective use of your QA data, you can even connect your agents with opposing strengths and weaknesses. This will allow them to help each other improve.
Empowering agents to improve their own quality
Quality assurance in a call center is often misconceived as a function solely for middle management. One of its greatest purposes is to empower agents to improve their own service quality.
As more teams adopt a bottom-up approach to customer service, the transparency of performance data is becoming increasingly common.
If you keep agents in the dark about their performance, how can you expect them to be motivated to improve?
A QA program that provides agents access to real-time performance data heightens their sense of ownership of their work. It’s no secret, that a heightened sense of ownership often leads to higher engagement, motivation, and performance in the workplace.
Boosting customer loyalty and retention
For many of your customers, your call center will be the first time they get to talk to your organization directly.
That first impression is incredibly important.
One of the biggest reasons for customers to go to a competitor is bad customer service. According to a report by Forbes, “brands are failing to create the positive, emotional experiences that drive customer loyalty”.
Utilizing quality assurance in your team helps ensure that your customer’s experience is beyond satisfactory each time. Maintaining a consistently high level of service is a surefire way to keep customers coming back.
The best way to improve your customer service
Maintaining or improving the quality of your customer service can be a difficult task. However, a well-thought-out QA process and the right integrated software can make it a lot less challenging.
Kaizo’s QA solution can help streamline your quality assurance process and manage everything in one place. If you’re in the market for a performance management solution, check out more information on how to pick the perfect call center QA software.