Contact centers that measure quality often use a very long evaluation form that probes every aspect of an agent’s performance during a call. These forms have more than 20 questions, with a selection of 6, 7 or 8 possible answers for each question. The contact center manager will tell you that he “scores” 1 call per agent per week. At the same time, he will also complain that nothing appears to be happening, call quality does not appear to be improving. The quality management process becomes a routine that does not deliver any results.
Sounds familiar? Maybe there is another way.
A quality management process does not work because calls are scientifically evaluated. It works because agents are told where they need to improve and given the necessary coaching, training or additional motivation to do so. The number of evaluations and feedback sessions is a greater factor in changing agent behavior than the depth of analysis.
Why not change the way calls are evaluated? Have a generic short evaluation form with a maximum of 10 questions, with a maximum of 4 answers each. It is designed to monitor the key drivers of agent performance and spot issues, nothing more. With the right technology, evaluators can listen to a call and grade it using a shorter questionnaire in the time it takes to find and listen to the call plus an extra 2 or 3 minutes to grade it. With the right technology, the time needed can be reduced to the length of the call plus those 2 or 3 minutes to grade it, the call will be found and attached to the evaluation automatically. Evaluators can easily evaluate 2 or 3 calls per agent per week using this form. The generic form works like an air traffic control radar that can spot an aircraft 100 miles away.
When they encounter issues, supervisors coach the agent and give them additional evaluations, using a shorter form with 4 or 5 questions that is tailored to the specific driver of operational success where the agent is having challenges. This specialized form will lead the evaluators to give specialized coaching in the areas that the agents need to fix. This works like the shorter range approach radars that they have at airports that give a much more detailed view. They enable the airport’s air traffic controllers to bring the plane in to land safely, even in thick fog.
With this approach, maybe more contact center managers can bring their agents in to a safe landing when they are having issues instead of having to clear up the wreckage afterwards.