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Call Centre quality monitoring, explaining Contact Center's options towards improvement

What's the difference between manually scoring Call Agents using spreadsheets and using a Call Evaluation Software?

Let us tell you, it's HUGE!

Our Contact Center tried all the conventional call monitoring means to improve Agents. Covert live assessments weren't productive as we hoped they would be; Peer-to-peer live assessments weren't either.

Appraisals and spreadsheets didn't work either

No matter what we tried, our call recordings remained not listened to, stored, and soon forgotten.

They only confirmed to us that we were not performing good enough and that we could do much better!

But how? bebexs Self-Evaluation system produced fantastic results!

Our Agents were self-evaluating their calls objectively, they were receptive to coaching and improving their call handling skills.

bebexs is much more than a self-evaluation tool! It is:
A training tool!
A coaching tool!
A call indexer!
A Quality control tool!

What is call monitoring?

A third party, listening in on a call. This monitoring is either done live or recorded with or without the other parties knowledge.

What is call quality monitoring?

A third party, listening in on a call. Also referred to as "Agent Monitoring" or "silent call monitoring" for Quality assurance (QA). Sometimes it is done live and combined with call barging, but it works much better if you record and evaluate the call afterward.

What is the meaning of call barging?

Call barging is when you listen to live calls without the Caller or Call centre agent knowing, and then interrupt the call to prompt the Agent without the Caller hearing or to speak with both the Agent and the Caller.

What is Quality assurance in a Contact Center?

Quality assurance (QA) ensures that the Call centre delivers a quality of service that meets or exceeds the organisation's objectives. Usually provided by a Quality analyst, Quality assessor or Quality assurance analyst.

Why is it better to record a call?

When evaluating a call, if you record it and you find something wrong or something done well, you can play it back to the agent. Then, you can either coach or congratulate them.

What is call evaluation?

Also referred to as "call assessment". The act of evaluating any single call. Done by agents, their supervisors, managers and quality assurance analysts. The results are scored and then recorded on a call evaluation form.

What is call scoring?

Call scoring is a way of assigning a score to a call evaluation and is carried out to enable performance comparison and benchmarking.

The score can then measure agents' performance, against a uniform standard.

What is call calibration?

Call Calibration is the process of ensuring managers, quality analysts, supervisors, trainers, Call Agents etc. evaluate and score agent calls in a standardized way.


How to create a call evaluation system using spreadsheets

Manual creation of a Call assessment system like bebexs is possible, by recording calls and:

  • producing an up-to-date list of all recordings
  • creating a mechanism to listen to recorded calls
  • creating spreadsheet evaluation forms
  • distribute evaluation forms to various users
  • amalgamating scores into a comparison spreadsheet
  • produce reports
  • comparing individual assessments
  • run calibration sessions to ensure standardised scoring

Manual creation also requires studying of the mechanisms of providing feedback. If not done correctly, providing feedback can have negative effects on performance.

Evaluating calls and scoring on a spreadsheet

Can I score Agents using a spreadsheet system?

It's possible but very difficult and time-consuming.

A lot of time and effort needs to be dedicated to create the evaluation forms and the scorecard spreadsheets. Also, an audit procedure needs to be put in place to ensure nobody makes entry mistakes, to avoid losing months worth of collected data.

For the Call Agent, this works just as well as some of the call evaluation software systems available. The real problem is with the time, effort, and management willpower needed to keep on top of it.

Since this is a large amount of work, a person needs to be in charge of, and to organize it, and you also need someone else to audit it. Making a mistake when entering data into the spreadsheet can corrupt the whole database. When we tried this method, it provided some results, but not what we expected. It didn't work well for us, but that doesn't mean that with more discipline you could not make it work.

A man who chose to manually create a call evaluation system is overwhelmed with paperwork and is holding his head between his hands in agony

Spreadsheets are difficult to keep up

Do you go down the DIY spreadsheet road or use a call evaluation system?

The end result could be the same but the resources and time spent getting results for your Call Centre is where they are very different. In our experience, DIY wasn't worth the money and the hassle.

One thing is for sure, Call Centres can save a lot of company time and money and produce faster and better results by implementing the bebexssystem.

A spreadsheet being represented as a prison of which the columns and rows are the prison bars which are broken and lead to a beach on a sunny day.

Call evaluation software systems

In all honesty, there is a reason why we made bebexs. We were doing call quality monitoring, but we couldn't make spreadsheets work for us: they were too error-prone. Our staff turnover was rising, and we had dissatisfied Customers. We tried most of the tools available, but they were too complicated, time-consuming, and difficult to maintain.

We had two choices, to give up and try to make due with existing tools, or aiming to become better. Compromising was never really an option for us. So, we decided to create bebexs.


What is bebexs?

I was hoping you would ask that!

Agent scoring done right

bebexs is a call evaluation software created to facilitate the assessment of calls. It provides a framework which enables to do everything one could do without a Call assessment system, but faster.

With bebexs, you don't need to study how to do these things or employ someone to create and coordinate the evaluations. Its user-friendly design enables you to start getting results right away!

bebexs enables you to make the most of your Call recordings

Your call recordings can be used to enable your Call centre to function efficiently.

Poor call handling, dissatisfied Customers, high staff turnover; you name it, we’ve been there. One day, we decided it was time to change.

We wanted to make things better. We knew we could provide a better customer experience by adjusting the way Agents worked. But, we didn't have the right tool for the job. We tried the trend: spreadsheets, appraisals. They provided some results, but the resources spent maintaining them were enormous. We still had dissatisfied Customers and unhappy agents, and we didn't want that. Then, we created bebexs.

bebexs is the result of a lot of effort, spent trying to improve our Call Centre. It put our Call recordings to good use and energised our agents!

Comparison of two strategies for obtaining customer satisfaction on an infographic which represents two ways, one is the hard and convoluted way, the other is the easy way with bebexs call centre quality monitoring software

Sharing the experience

Because we’re a great bunch, we’ll share our insight into the obstacles we overcame during our journey to creating
the bebexs self-assessment software.

Covert live call assessments

Our first approach, we would listen live to random calls without telling the agent, and score each call on a basic spreadsheet. Our Agents hated this. They disliked the feeling of being constantly monitored for mistakes. Secretly monitoring the Agents and the lack of transparency upset them and caused mistrust in the Contact Center. Unless just one person was involved, the entries on the spreadsheets were also unreliable. Although we hoped it will make our Agents better, it didn't.

Peer-to-peer live call assessments

One of our Agents described it as "It's like having a back seat driver telling you how to drive but at work". Nobody liked somebody sitting next to them correcting everything they said. It is no wonder that it stressed out our Agents. Coaching was always limited because you couldn't pause a call. Our Call Agents accused their supervisors of nitpicking. There wasn't a call recording which would prove otherwise. Statistically, our Agents made even more mistakes during peer-to-peer assessments, compared to covert monitoring.

Recording calls

Even though our Call Centre has always used call recording software, when we first started our calls were recorded, stored, and then forgotten about, unless we had a customer complaint.

We had a .wav file for each call, but we didn't index them properly. So, it took some time to find an individual call. If we wanted to listen to it, we had to copy the .wav file to a PC with a sound card in it and play it through the PC's speakers, or use separate headphones. We only listened to calls if we had a customer complaint, because tracking down individual calls was time-consuming. Finding a specific call was like finding a needle in a haystack. The amount of work to find multiple calls made in a given period was enormous.


Appraisals

I never liked appraisals; if I've done something wrong the sooner you tell me about it, the sooner I can fix it. Appraisals usually are too far apart. They take a significant amount of work to organize. And unless they are very positive, they can demotivate the Call Agent and the person giving the appraisal.

It's the delay that is the problem. If we brought up something negative, that is not from the previous two weeks, it appeared that we are picking on the Agent. This wasn't the goal we were aiming for since we wanted our Agents to be happier doing their job, not more stressed.

The Grim reaper approaches a busy call agent from behind, pointing towards the agent and saying it's appraisal time, sarcastically representing the flaws that call centre quality monitoring with appraisals has

How many staff leave before they even get to their first appraisal?

Nobody wants their staff to leave after all those resources spent on training them. There has to be a way to keep your staff and have them perform better without stressing them out.

Actually, there is a way - a much more positive outcome is available by doing frequent call evaluations and self-evaluations of Call recordings.


Using a Call evaluation system to evaluate agents

In the early days of the bebexs development, we thought it would be a good idea to test the early versions for an appraisal.

We hoped for:
  • improved Agent’s call handling skills
  • agents fixing their mistakes
  • satisfied Customers
An agent walking out of the appraisals room from where someone is saying 'Thank you for attending' is thinking 'Pathetic! They criticised mistakes from months ago, and called it feedback!'

What we actually got

Our supervisors quickly overwhelmed our Agents with lists of mistakes they had made, expecting them fixed immediately. Our Agents felt under siege and became stressed. Although, the real problem was the constant misunderstandings between us and the Agents. We explained to them that we were giving feedback, but our agents decided we were criticising them. Their backs were up, and they stopped listening. Sometimes, we would hear the odd rude comment from our Agents. This was actually great, because now we knew what not to do, and we moved a step forward. We included our Agents in the development of bebexs - taking their suggestions seriously on how to make it better.

Encouraging agents to self-evaluate their calls with bebexs

"Idiot you're doing it wrong!" said my big brother. "No, I'm not, and you're the Idiot!", It doesn't matter what it was that I was supposed to be doing wrong: I would always say I was right, and they were wrong. I knew that I had to defend myself and learnt at an early age to ignore anybody that criticised me. It is human nature, and like a lot of Call Agents (and everybody else for that matter), I still do it: I haven't changed. It is human nature. That why self-evaluation works so good. When you tell yourself that you're doing it wrong, you don't get defensive.

The only problem we had was that our agents tended to be very generous when scoring themselves.

Using the "Not so secret sauce"

After we discovered the obvious "Not so secret sauce", we saw that it encouraged agents to objectively self-evaluate their calls, and it started producing fantastic results.


Why use bebexs?

It is easy to use, efficient and will help you improve your agents call handling skills, motivate them and stop the dissatisfaction among them. Your Customers will be happier; your agents will answer more calls which should have a positive impact on your bottom line.

Furthermore, you can use bebexs as:

  • a training tool
  • a coaching tool
    (The agent points out their own mistakes and is receptive to being coached on how to avoid them)
  • a compliance system
  • a call indexer
  • an easy way to listen to calls
  • a QA Quality control system
  • a Scorecard template system
  • a Call evaluation system
  • a tool to Lower your staff turnover

By adding a little bit of our “Not so Secret Sauce”!

Motivated and happy agents perform better. Your agents will constantly strive to be better and will become superstars!

Having superb customer service all the time is much better than having it sometimes. And having it for just a fraction of the resources spent by trying to achieve it with traditional tools is even better.


Do you need more reasons?

If you're still having second thoughts, don't, because we offer you a:


A red stamp guaranteeing a risk-free 100% refund within two months

We are so confident that bebexs will you give you the same results that it gave us, that we are prepared to offer you this guarantee. If at any time in the next 60 days you are not happy with the service provided or the result you are getting with bebexs, then let us know, and we will refund 100% of any money you have paid to us.