Call Recording Software and Your Contact Center

An irate company owner pays a visit to a busy contact center. He entrusted the center to take the orders that are called in from a TV infomercial he created selling a collector’s set of US coins. While the number of orders has been what he hoped to receive, he is dismayed because very few customers also chose to buy the display case for the coins, which is sold separately.

The call center manager assures him that the agents have offered the case to customers, but neither one can figure out why the cases aren’t selling better. Another contact center must contend with a lawsuit filed by a customer, claiming that when she called to complain about a purchase three weeks ago, the agent she spoke with used a racial slur. The agent denies the charge, but there is no way to prove her accusation is untrue. At a third contact center, coaching sessions with John, a new agent, are not going well. When his performance is monitored, John asks the right questions and treats callers with courtesy. But the number of orders he takes remains consistently lower than any other agent on his shift.

Three contact centers with one common trait – none of them invested in call recording software.

These three scenarios are fictional, but reminiscent of situations that are all too common at contact centers of all sizes and types. So how could they be resolved differently if call recording software had been utilized? At the first contact center, recordings were reviewed and it was discovered that agents mentioned the display case too late in the ordering process, when customers had already believed their order to be concluded and were ready to hang up. A change to the script was made to offer the case earlier, and orders increased.

At the second contact center, the call in question was quickly located and reviewed. Turns out the agent did not say anything inappropriate. The recording was played for the caller’s attorney, and the lawsuit was then dropped. And at the contact center where John was recently hired, managers reviewed recordings of his interactions with customers, and found that his attention to courtesy and detail was not acceptable when his boss wasn’t monitoring him.

Call Recording Benefits

As these scenarios prove, call recording enables a contact center to gather, save and review customer call data, which can improve customer service, agent performance and business efficiency. There are a number of ways to measure ROI on call recording software. Here are some of the most prominent:

Agent Training

Call recordings are the best way for agents to learn from past performance. Over time they will be able to use these recordings for self-evaluation as well. Great calls and terrible calls can be archived and used to train new agents in how to handle an array of specific challenges. Taken together, these benefits bolster customer service while reducing both agent costs and agent turnover.

Conflict Resolution

Customer complaints can escalate into costly legal action if they are not definitively addressed. Having an audio record of each conversation saves time, clarifies uncertainties, and could eliminate court costs.

More Efficient Call Handling

Reviewing past calls will inevitably generate ideas for how to lower average handle time, improve call resolution, and better address customer needs. That can boost sales, aid in customer retention, and benefit the company’s bottom line.

Improved Productivity

Recorded calls provide a means to gather research on consumer trends and product interest that can be utilized in the formulation of marketing and sales strategies.

Customer Confidence

These days, with all the stories about government surveillance, customers may assume their call is being recorded even when it is not. Customers will not regard this standard call monitoring disclosure as an inconvenience or an intrusion, as a recording provides both protection and clarification if an issue should arise.

An Affordable Advantage

There was a time when only the largest call centers could afford a call recording software system. But times have changed. Lower IT costs and cloud computing have brought this technology within the means of most small and midsized call centers. However, with limited budgets and resources, smaller call centers cannot afford to invest in the wrong solution for call recording. So it’s imperative to select software that is cost-effective, while providing the same benefits and advantages traditionally enjoyed by those with larger IT budgets.

Cloud computing offers companies the option of transferring their IT operations into a virtual environment, where they can develop, deploy, and manage applications, and pay only for the time and capacity that they need. For a smaller call center, this means the ability to significantly lower upfront costs, while maintaining the option of scaling up as needed. For midsized call centers, cloud computing also provides access to benefits and resources that in the past would require more equipment, more capital, and more staff to support.

Expanding the Advantage of Call Recording

A fully unified solution of workforce management, call recording, quality monitoring and performance management connects all aspects of forecasting, scheduling, adherence, skills, quality, metrics, and compliance to better meet customer needs and deliver more effective customer service. It helps easily identify patterns and analyze metrics at various levels for training and quality assurance purposes, and establishes quality standards and best practices.

In addition, quantitative and qualitative information can be combined for a complete assessment of contact center performance. For example, if an agent has an adherence issue, a manager can easily investigate data using call recording to get to the root cause and develop tailored training and coaching programs to address it. Only an integrated workforce optimization suite allows companies to “connect the dots” and quickly understand the whole picture that impacts the bottom line. Call recording as part of a unified workforce optimization solution transforms call center management from a reactive to a proactive approach.

This gives call center teams the tools and insights to further increase productivity, drive customer loyalty, and increase top line revenue, operating margins, and compliance through continuous performance improvement. To learn more, please watch these videos about call recording and quality monitoring in action, or download our whitepaper Why Call Recording is Essential for Contact Centers.