In the past, many organizations were prone to think about Quality Assurance for their customer interactions as “nice to have” and perhaps something that could be de-prioritized when times were lean or other opportunities presented themselves. As marketplace competition continues to grow fiercer each day, that perspective has changed. In an age where a negative experience as a consumer can be rocketed around the globe, the internet makes sharing your latest interaction with a companyall too easy, with only a few key strokes and mouse clicks needed.Whether through a blog or other social media outlet, soon everyone knows about it – the stakes are very high indeed!
When Quality Assurance is done well, it is a key business imperative since it contributes to the following:
- Improving an organization’s sales effectiveness to improve conversion rates, up selling and cross-selling activities, and making new customer acquisition more profitable
- Enhancing customer experience through higher levels of first contact resolution, higher retention rates and more loyalty, and overall customer satisfaction,which can lead to customers who evangelize your service, product and brand
- Gaining marketshare by deliberately identifying actionable Voice of the Customer feedback and data points
- Meeting corporate governance requirements to eliminate customer interaction handling mistakes, which can not only lead to loss of customers(and incurring fines and penalties),but it can also produce negative publicity, which gives an organization a whole new set of headaches to deal with
This quote from management consulting expert, The Ascent Group, also talks about the positive impact QA processes have on your business success:
“Companies that have implemented call quality programs have realized significant improvementsin call quality, customer satisfaction, employee and overall call center performance, as well as lower employee turnover, lower absenteeism and higher morale”.
Your QA process’ effectiveness can be measured by its impact to the metrics that your CEO thinks about every day – sales, CSAT, and profitability. The Return On Investment (ROI) is evident and the positive impact that your QA solution contributes to your enterprise is very tangible. Your QA partner collaborates with your sales and service teams to drive this ROI by:
- Reviewing a representative and statistically valid sample size of customer interactions
- Calibrating frequently to continually identify best-practice customer interactions and measure against this standard
- Benchmarking results, setting improvement goals and actions to deliver better performance and track trends; this is done not only to the results, but the critical behaviors which drive those results
- Capturing key findings and succinctly articulating performance improvement opportunities to sales and service leadership
- Remaining objective with a bias for the company’s best interest by only evaluating interactions versus best-practices
- Applying these processes seamlessly to all of your customer contact channels including inbound/outbound sales, customer service (voice/email) and webchat sales/service.
And beyond QA . . .
You will obviously want to know how effectively your company representative interacted with their customer, but what other important information was exchanged that’s critical to your business? Customers don’t follow a script, they simply say what’s on their mind . . . and if we don’t have a way to capture their comments, we are leaving valuable information on the cutting room floor. Customer comments might include things such as:
- How your prospects and customers feel about your promotional offers versus your competition
- The obstacles to buying that your customers are experiencing (website, phone system IVR, other)
- The issues with service quality your customers are upset about (don’t forget that they are also talking to others about those problems, too)
- Their primary objections to your offers (i.e. price, quality of the product, service experience)
- In general, what they and others in the marketplace are saying about your products, services, prices and brand.
“Many organizations capture the voice of the customer only in ad hoc fashion from messages or other communication coming through one of the channels. Without a systematic approach, organizations could be blind to events occurring in their markets, such as problems with products and services or competitive developments that demand a time-sensitive response.”
International Customer Management Institute (May 2010)
When designing and investing in Quality Assurance processes, you want to ensure you are getting the most from your solutions and that they are delivering measurable value to your organization. The most effective QA solutions marry sales and service effectiveness measurement and improvement with insight on marketplace perceptions. Actions taken on these critical inputs help drive business performance.