Vocalabs Newsletter: Quality Times


In This Issue:

  • VocaLabs SectorPulse

VocaLabs SectorPulse

By Peter Leppik

Today, VocaLabs introduced its new SectorPulse customer service monitoring service. This service provides an ongoing view into the quality and practices of competing customer service operations in a single industry.

The first sector we're studying is the mobile phone industry, covered in our report issued today. We intend to issue quarterly reports on mobile phones, with other industries planned for future studies.

Our Findings

Satisfaction Graph

We gathered data on four of the largest mobile phone companies between December 10th and January 15th. VocaLabs panelists who are existing customers of AT&T Wireless, Cingular, SprintPCS, or Verizon Wireless were asked to complete a survey after having their calls to customer service recorded.

Automation Rate Graph

Based on this data, we found that Verizon Wireless has the highest overall caller satisfaction. Verizon was good enough to earn an "A" in the VocaLabs Caller Satisfaction benchmark. In declining order, Cingular earned a "B", SprintPCS a "C", and AT&T Wireless an "D."

Single Call Completion in the mobile phone industry was relatively poor as compared to our benchmark database. Verizon, with the highest score, earned a "B", while the other three companies all earned "D's." This is clearly an operational inefficiency, since customers who don't complete their tasks on the first call will either make multiple calls (incurring additional expense), or give up (leading to lost revenue and poor satisfaction).

Call Time Graph

We also found that SprintPCS had the longest average call time, and Verizon Wireless had the highest rate of automation. AT&T Wireless had the highest rate of caller frustration.

SectorPulse Capabilities

The new SectorPulse service provides companies with an unprecedented window into the quality of both their own customer service operations and those of their competitors.

Frustration Rate Graph

Traditional quality assurance methods for customer service provide only limited information about the call and the caller. For example, a call recording provides data about what happened during the call, but little information about the caller's opinions. Conversely, follow-up surveys provide information about how the callers felt about the call, but little information about what actually happened.

A SectorPulse report provides both caller opinions and call recordings, matched to caller demographic data and call statistics. VocaLabs can also track multiple calls from the same caller, allowing us to provide a truer picture of service quality, accounting for customers who need multiple calls to get what they need.

SectorPulse data is gathered in the same way as a VocaLabs Custom Study, allowing the results from a Custom Study to be compared directly to a SectorPulse report.

Finally, SectorPulse provides valuable competitive information with data to directly compare the methods and results for competing companies in the same industry.

For SectorPulse subscribers, survey data and call recordings are available in real-time. In addition, an Executive Summary provides competitive and trend analysis for each report.

How We Do It

Since we were founded in 2001, VocaLabs has gained a reputation in the customer service industry as a neutral and cost-efficient service for evaluating the quality of customer service operations. We've recruited over 45,000 people from across the United States and Canada for providing feedback about new and existing customer service operations.

SectorPulse was born from the realization that among our panelists there are a significant number of customers for many large consumer-oriented companies. These people would be calling customer service anyway; all we have to do is gather the data.

To participate in a SectorPulse study, a panelist calls the company through VocaLabs. We identify the person using a PIN number, and switch the call through to the company's published customer service number.

We record the call, and then ask the panelist to complete a questionnaire about the experience afterwards.

The call statistics, combined with the data on callers' opinions, allow us to measure the performance of the companies' customer service operations on a number of different parameters. For example, we can calculate the percentage of callers who made multiple phone calls, or who reported that they couldn't get the information they needed. This gives us a metric for single call completion.

For More Information

For more information about this or future SectorPulse studies, please contact Rick Rappe at rrappe@vocalabs.com

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