5 “Musts” to Improve Your Quality Management Strategy

We all know the importance of quality management (QM). But we also know there are only so many hours in the day, and that a quality management program can sometimes take a lot of them.

Still, this is not an optional pursuit for a contact center to maintain optimal customer service. So here are five steps that must be taken for call center quality management improvement – put them in place and it may streamline your effort, resulting in positive results on a shorter time investment.

  1. You Must Be Consistent

Whatever schedule you set up for QM, it must be maintained even when the contact center gets busy, or unexpected complications would make it inconvenient to do so. The goal here is too important to compromise.

  1. You Must Be Clear On What “Quality” Means

“We need to do a better job” is not quality management. “We need to shorten our calls” is also not QM. Specific goals are essential: “We need to cut 10 seconds from every call”: “We need to lower the number of repeat calls for the same issue by 50%.” This is also important when grading calls on whatever scale you prefer. If one reviewer grades a call at a 5 out of 10 for script adherence, and another grades the same call as an 8, you aren’t getting a clear picture of your current status. That makes tracking progress even more difficult.

  1. You Must Invest in Training

For QM purposes, training means relaying your definition of quality in detail to agents, and specifying how you measure quality. Also, train workers to see the connection between their actions and the company’s overall performance. By tying individual behavior to an overall system of work, and then showing where that system can break down, you will be giving workers the information they need to be valuable assets to your business.

4. You Must Create Quality Circles

The Quality Circle concept goes back to the 1950s, and despite all the ways business has changed since then it is still an effective tool at contact centers. Create a small group of employees, preferably a combination of agents, managers, coaches, trainers and management – and give them a challenge to overcome. Participation should be voluntary for best results. If you’re short on volunteers, offer some additional incentive for joining.

  1. You Must Enjoy the Journey

When QM is the last thing anyone wants to do, it will inevitably become the last thing everybody does. So perhaps one of the first challenges to put before your Quality Circle is to come up with some ways to make the process more enjoyable. Here’s one thought: schedule the meetings for 10:30 or 11am, and then take the group out for lunch at a nice restaurant to continue the conversations in a more informal setting.

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