Vocalabs Newsletter: Quality Times


In This Issue:

Announcing Express Feedback

By Peter Leppik

Yesterday we announced a new service, Express Feedback. There's nothing quite like Express Feedback available today, and we think it brings the whole idea of what's possible in caller surveys forward.

By now you may have seen our marketing bullet points:

  • Pre-Call Recruiting: We ask callers to participate in the survey at the very beginning of the call, boosting participation and reducing sample bias.
  • Surveys Matched to Recordings: Individual survey responses are matched to individual call recordings.
  • Immediate Follow-Up: We survey callers within minutes of the end of the call, before they forget details.
  • The Human Touch: Surveys are performed by professional survey administrators. This sends the message that you care about your customers' opinions, and elicits more complete feedback than automated methods.
  • Two-Call Process: We call customers back for the survey, so Express Feedback doesn't automatically exclude callers who hang up before the end of the call.
  • Real-Time Reports: Survey data and call recordings are available through a secure web-based interface within minutes of the end of the call, giving you a window into what's happening in your call center right now.
  • Simple Set-Up: No hardware or software is required at the client end.

The key to making Express Feedback work is the magic of the long-distance network

You may be skeptical of our claims, and rightly so, especially the one about "no hardware or software required." In many cases today it is considered an impressive feat to perform a live follow-up survey consistently within 24 hours, much less minutes. And matching call recordings to survey responses simply isn't attempted.

The key to making Express Feedback is the magic of the long-distance network. Using multi-site call routing or forwarding from the call center's switch, a fraction of the inbound calls are redirected to VocaLabs' switch. Several of our pilot sites have reported that this is a simple configuration change, taking only a few minutes.

From that point on, VocaLabs handles everything transparently to both the caller and the call center. We identify the client based on the call information, and play an appropriate greeting (i.e. "Thank you for calling ABC Company. We're currently doing a project to measure the performance of our customer service, and we would like to call you back right after this call...."). If the caller agrees to participate, we capture and verify a call-back number, then forward the call to the call center while recording it.

Then, as soon as either party hangs up, we have one of our professional survey administrators make the callback. Our goal is that within a few minutes after the caller hangs up his phone, his or her phone rings again for the survey.

The survey data and call recordings (including a recording of the survey call) are then made available to our client through a secure web-based interface. You can literally be reading survey feedback and listening to a recording of a call made only minutes before. Our report format makes it simple to slice and dice the data any way you want, and focus your attention just on those calls of particular interest.

We think Express Feedback raises the bar in measuring call center performance by several notches. We also think that once you get a chance to see how it improves visibility into your own call center, you'll agree.

Half the Picture

By Rick Rappe

Many call centers record calls. Many call centers also survey callers. But by itself, a call recording or a survey only gives you half the picture.

The ability to match individual call recordings to specific customer feedback has been a desire of managers for some time. A call recording might tell you what happened, but a matching follow-up survey will reveal why. Until VocaLabs, matching surveys with recordings has been possible only by the largest of contact centers and even in those instances the process is a highly complex, human resource intense and expensive undertaking. Very few bothered.

Express Feedback has many advantages over traditional survey methods: less bias, higher participation rates, and real-time data to name a few. But probably the most important, though least appreciated, advantage is being able to match call recordings to survey data.

Probably the most important, though least appreciated, advantage to Express Feedback is being able to match call recordings to survey data.

Consider this: even in a poorly performing call center, usually over 80% of calls go reasonably smoothly. If you use call recordings for agent monitoring and coaching, that means that you need to listen to at least five recordings to find one where the agent should have done something differently. That's a labor intensive process. But using survey data, you can focus your efforts on those calls which you already know had problems.

Or think about how you track caller satisfaction: having regular survey data (monthly or quarterly) is nice, but what do you actually do when the numbers head south? Unless there was an obvious operational problem which lead to the drop, chances are there will be as much finger-pointing as action. Having specific recordings matched to the survey data, however, gives you the chance to find out exactly what went wrong on every problem call. The result is specific action-items for improvement, and hard data to avoid the blame game.

If you've seen us in person or had a chance to walk through one of our sample data sets, you've already seen a demonstration of this power. If not, I'd like to opportunity to show you what you're missing. Give me a call at 952-941-6580x205, or e-mail me at rrappe@vocalabs.com.

See Us In Seattle

If you're planning to be in Seattle for the ACCE conference next week, come see us at Booth 516. Of course our focus will be Express Feedback, but we'll be happy to discuss any of our other services and research. Hope to see you there!

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