You probably made your customer experience program a top priority five short months ago when you sat down to make your New Year’s resolutions for your contact centers. Let’s do a gut check…did the priority to better your customer experience program fall by the way side just like your resolution of a smaller waistline? I’m sure that your intentions were noble but the hectic day-to-day of running your contact centers can easily get in the way of your long-range goals. There’s still time to redirect your focus back to your goals.
According to a recent CustomerManagementIQ survey, nearly 76% of the customer management executives and leaders rated customer experience a ‘5’ on a scale of 1-5 (with 5 being of the highest importance). Could those executives and leaders be your competitors? It’s very likely. All the more reason customer experience and a revision of your Voice of the Customer (VoC) program should be a ‘5’ on your list too. Once customer experience is your highest priority and you are ready to get to work, where should you start? Who owns the customer experience?
While in my opinion everyone should own the customer experience in some way, for the purpose of this piece let’s focus on how the contact center contributes to the customer experience. Think about how the contact center is responsible for many of the touch points and has influence over many other touch points. So the contact center can own the voice of the customer. The easiest place to start in building a customer experience program from the ground up, or revamping your current one is with post-call IVR surveys. Continue reading “Why isn’t your customer experience program a top priority?” »
The reasons why you can’t afford the contact center of tomorrow may not be for the reasons you think. It used to be that anyone who could type and was nice, was perfect to sit in a call center seat. Well, it’s not 1980 anymore and we have contact centers now. The archaic mindset of thinking that these are very simple jobs and therefore do not warrant higher education or provide a greater wage than the minimum is just not the case anymore. If you say it aloud it doesn’t even make sense, “I want to hire a multi-tasking problem solver, who is also empathetic, talented, and committed but I only want to pay them $10/hour.” See? Crazy. The contact centers jobs have become more and more complex with each passing year but the mindset hasn’t changed. Continue reading “Why you can’t afford the contact center of tomorrow.” »
“Do you think it’s a good idea to transfer upset customers from the survey to supervisors?” is a question that was included in the 25 Mistakes to Avoid with Post-call IVR Surveys eBook and self-assessment. The eBook and self-assessment includes diagnostic questions for you to uncover weaknesses in your post-call IVR survey program or implement a new program that is not loaded with mistakes that others have made. Now is the time to take advantage of the compilation of problems I have come across in the 20 years since inventing post-call IVR surveying in contact centers.
Why is this a problem?
I know what you’re thinking; who wouldn’t prefer to have their issue dealt with right away compared to when somebody ‘gets around to’ returning their call, right? In this world of instant information, that would tend to be the common choice, however, let’s think about the big picture and ramifications of executing that from a human and business perspective. Continue reading “Do you think it’s a good idea to transfer upset customers from the survey to supervisors?” »
“Do you think a 1-5 scale is the best?” is a question that was included in the 25 Mistakes to Avoid with Post-call IVR Surveys e-book and self-assessment. The e-book and self-assessment includes 26 questions because we threw in a bonus. The questions are designed to provide a diagnostic that can be used to uncover many of the problems that have been created with post-call IVR surveys since I invented them in contact centers almost 20 years ago. Many of these questions I have been providing answers to from the very beginning, so please share the ebook with your colleagues, we need your help to stop some of the madness. Continue reading “Do you think a 1-5 scale is the best?” »
“Do you think only angry people participate in post-call IVR surveys?” is one of the 26 questions included in the ebook 25 Mistakes to Avoid with Post-call IVR Surveys (there is a bonus question included). The e-book and self-assessment includes diagnostic questions, like this one, to uncover many of the common mistakes people make in their post-call IVR survey programs. I never thought that after inventing post-call IVR surveys I would have to spend so much effort to overcome the misinformation that abounds about them. Please share the ebook with your colleagues so they can learn from the mistakes of others.
Why thinking this a problem?
If you think only angry people participate in post-call IVR surveys you would be terribly mistaken. And if you had a post-call IVR survey program where this happened, it is direct evidence of a massive program design flaw. It was unintentionally built to capture only the angry. Continue reading “Why only angry people participate in post-call IVR surveys” »
“Does your company consider post-call IVR surveying to be a technology?” is a question that was included in the 25 Mistakes to Avoid with Post-call IVR Surveys ebook and self-assessment. The ebook and self-assessment includes diagnostic questions to uncover many of the problems I have come across since inventing post-call IVR surveying in contact centers almost 20 years ago.
Why this is a problem?
It seems like there is an app for everything nowadays, and this seems like a very good thing for consumers. Similarly, there seems to be software for everything we need to do in our businesses. You are probably involved in no less than one major software/hardware installation and two or three minor ones that support business automation. Continue reading “Does your company consider post-call IVR surveying to be a technology?” »
We live in a fickle and demanding world where customers have little loyalty to us but they expect a lifetime of guarantee on the item they purchased, no matter how small. If customers don’t get an immediate response or don’t get what they feel is due to them they can tweet about it, Facebook it, share it with their Google+ circles and about 900 other different ways. It’s kind of scary when you think about it, isn’t it? It’s downright terrifying for call center agents just trying to do their jobs.
We’ve written extensively about the pros and cons of social media customer service. On one hand it can augment the customer experience, offloading some of the common service/support questions that clog your call center by having those questions answered online. Conversely, many ‘terrorist-like’ customers gain quick fame using social media to get attention when their unrealistic customer experience expectations were not met.
Regardless of what side of the fence you’re on, time is wasted when you “chase the smoke” on social media and get caught up responding to the individual catty comments instead of focusing on the larger conversation. We’ve gathered some of our top stories discussing the pros and cons of social media customer service for you to decide for yourself. Do you have an interesting social customer experience story to share with me? Tweet me @jodiemonger! Continue reading “Social customer service; a place for brand terrorists or an agent’s best friend?” »
The only effective way to capture the Voice of the Customer (VoC) is through post-call IVR surveys, where results are able to tap into the genuine experiences customers have with a product or service. The knowledge shared by the customer, and thereby gained and analyzed by the company, can lead to powerful change for the future improvement of the business. When executed well, post-call IVR surveys are the single greatest tool at determining customer pain and propelling businesses toward positive customer experience process improvement.
Most call center managers can agree that post-call IVR surveying is important, but many surveys fail in practice, first with the types of questions asked, and second with the length of the survey. Remember our discussion of market researchers versus customer experience analysts? Continue reading “Post-call IVR surveys: the key to call center process improvement” »
You know that capturing post-call customer feedback is critical to your business. It allows you to keep your finger on the pulse of the customer, uncover problem products, agent issues, service faults and organizational barriers. Additionally, it reveals the positive in what is working, who is performing at high levels and quantifies how the customer experience translates into customer satisfaction and loyalty. If you are not getting these things, you are missing it. You may think that your customers are inconvenienced by being asked to participate in a post-call IVR survey. If done correctly, they will not be.
As you know, Customer Relationship Metrics conducts free Customer Insights to Action assessments on post-call IVR survey programs. Many of those who take advantage of this service do so because their current customer experience measurement program is not yielding information that can be used for driving process improvements inside the contact center and for the enterprise. Continue reading “The Best of Knuggets and Knuckleheads: Post-call IVR Surveys” »
Aside from a knowledgeable, agent-friendly, capable leader at the helm of your call center, what else goes into designing the ideal prototype for a call center manager?
You need someone with savvy business acumen to navigate through the ever-changing business landscape. Think about the best boss you’ve ever had: did s/he have the expertise to confidently handle any and all issues that came their way because of an intimate knowledge of the business and all of its functions? Call center technology is constantly changing and the perfect call center leader stays on top of the trends and is not afraid to be out of their comfort zone. What is the competition doing? What do your customers demand? What social customer service channels would best serve your customers’ needs? Continue reading “Designing the perfect call center manager – The next phase.” »
If you could create the perfect call center manager, what would he or she look like? Specifically, what traits or management styles would s/he have? What attitudes or knowledge would s/he bring to the table? While you find some of your perfect traits during the interview process, it is difficult to find all of the attributes of a winning call center manager in one single candidate. Wouldn’t it be great if we could take the best of all the call center managers we’ve seen over the years and build the perfect prototype? Continue reading “Crafting the perfect Call Center Manager.” »
When it comes to growing your business, the ingredients are straightforward: have a good product/service, understand your customers’ needs, have good, clean customer data, and deliver an exemplary customer experience every time. Do those four things better than everyone else and your company always lands on the top of the heap. Fail to do any one of these things and you end up being mediocre at best and maybe do not survive.
Have you had an experience like one of my recent ones where I was pitched by a reputable company that had not done the research about me as a customer? The pitch was so far off-base that it was actually insulting to me. Sure, they had a good product, but because they didn’t understand my needs as a customer and battered me so much on the phone, I was left with only a poor customer experience. It’s likely that I’ll never do business with them or their sister companies in the future. Continue reading “How well does your Big Data know your customers?” »
I have recently overheard discussions around creative ways to improve a company’s customer satisfaction ratings from their External Quality Monitoring program using a post-call survey methodology. “How can we break that 95%+ glass ceiling in customer satisfaction ratings?” “Why couldn’t the agent ask the customer at the end of each call if they have done enough for them to give them a top box rating?” Sure, it sounds straightforward. In theory, the agent would know before they hung up if they had provided the level of customer service and answered the questions that the customer wanted them to or if they needed to do more before ending the call. They could fix the problem right then and there, right? If only it were that simple. While this concept sounds like an uncomplicated fix – ask and you shall receive – it may be anything but. “Be careful what you wish for” might be more applicable to this scenario than anyone realizes. Continue reading “Are you earning that high post-call survey score?” »
Little kids get in trouble all the time, and when they’re ready to come clean they’ll often make parents promise not to get mad before they spill beans. Wanting to ensure mom and dad’s response is not unlike an agent asking for a top score on a post-call survey from a customer they just helped on a service call. But be careful, because engineering and massaging customer experience data creates bigger problems than stealing a candy bar or pushing down a sibling and confessing to a parent.
There’s a big difference between a call center agent asking a customer if they’ve answered all their questions at the end of a customer service call and asking if they transfer that customer to a post-call survey if that customer would give them a nine or a 10 rating on their call performance, i.e. massaging customer behavior. By planting the seed in the customer’s mind about the rating they should give the call center agent, they end up engineering a customer experience vs. letting the customer rate the agent honestly. Continue reading “Post-call surveys are pointless if your agents synthesize the results.” »
When is enough, enough? During these lean economic times companies, like many households, are trying to do more with less. At what point does all of that scrimping and saving end up costing the company more? Let’s take head count and span of control for instance. In our example company, the External Quality Monitoring program using a post-call survey methodology shows that customers are happy with the current span of control ratio of approximately 15:1. The customers are not delighted, but not necessarily discontent. What if the management team of this company decides that ‘happy’ is the new ‘delighted’ and decides to tweak the span of control slightly in an attempt to reduce costs even more? If the company increases team size, they would be able to eliminate a supervisor position. They could simply function the same way they currently do when a supervisor is on vacation. Customers don’t notice vacation days so they won’t notice this, right? Continue reading “Scrimping in the call center can cost you” »