How to Use a Contact Center Improvement Plan to Increase Value

It’s true, the right tools make any job easier. It’s also true our tools must evolve to keep pace with a changing world. That’s especially true in the contact center as channel requirements and customer expectations become more plentiful – and demanding.

As the contact center industry continues to move forward at a fast pace, there’s a temptation to measure every possible factor that may (or may not) improve the customer service a center provides.  According to a recent ICMI ebook on center metrics, “A large majority of contact centers are measuring many, many things. There is a propensity for that to happen: someone sees an improvement opportunity or operational gap, believes that a report could provide visibility, and adds it to the mix.”

While gaining clarity can be helpful, reporting outdated or unnecessary metrics can quickly turn into a quagmire. Unfortunately, many organizations lack the infrastructure to actually keep reporting protocols current. They fall into the trap we call ‘metrics madness.’ As a result, “the information may have value,” the ICMI says, “but if there is too much to absorb, your team’s focus on the things that matter will be diminished.”

At GCS, we know that using the right metrics in the right way will deliver consistent and impressive results. Tracking every single indicator will give you plenty of data to analyze, whether or not it applies to your specific goals. The GCS methodology puts a spotlight on the weaknesses and inefficiency in your processes. A thoughtful blend of open- and closed-ended questions trains focus on vital areas of your center’s process.

The goal is to identify those process improvements that return the best performance results with the most appropriate minimal resources.

We share that essential objective with Benchmark Portal, the pioneering contact center evaluation and research group. Benchmark Portal conducted the industry’s very first formal contact center benchmarking study in 1995, and guides the industry with education, research and scientific study. As recipients of their 2015 “Best Contact Center in North America” award, we are committed to upholding the industry through the use and promotion of clear, relevant and highly functional benchmarking tools.

Begin by assessing the most pressing concerns you want to address, and dig deeper to discover what processes in those areas are working and which ones need to be refined, reworked, or scrapped.

If you are looking to implement changes at your call center, GCS’s Call Center Improvement Tool can help you evaluate these 10 distinct areas of improvement. You can assess your center in all 10 areas, or choose just one of the following:

  1. Training – GCS can help you evaluate the teaching methods employed in your organization based on your center’s size, current training programs, and the type of skills that are most important for your agents to strengthen.
  2. Quality Assurance – Examine your current approach to QA and the tools you have in use. Also evaluated are current call monitoring protocols, success rates and your call calibration plan.
  3. Disaster Recovery – Use DR best practices, combined with your center’s specific goals, to help you identify areas where your redundancy and DR processes can be strengthened.
  4. Employee Retention – In addition to scrutinizing tenure, turnover rates, and benefits offerings, GCS can help you analyze your plan for promoting from within and how you attempt to avoid turnover.
  5. Customer Service – Running a successful contact center is all about how you please your customers. We analyze ways for you to extend coverage, use blended agents and/or promote self-service channels.
  6. Performance Metrics – GCS will help you measure your satisfaction with three specific KPIs: Target Abandonment Rate, Average Speed of Answer, and Average Call Handle Time. We look into ways to improve these metrics and other performance indicators specific to your center.
  7. Financial Performance – We try to find ways to bring your overall cost and determine if there are any underlying issues contributing to unnecessary increased costs.
  8. Operations Model – These straightforward questions focus on the make-up of your center, from the percentage of in-house and/or domestic operations to the use of a blended workforce.
  9. Staffing – We ask participants to rank the success of current staffing models, including staffing to meet demand, workforce management and supervisory involvement. Additionally, we look at total number of seats, agent utilization rates, and blended seat capabilities, to determine how to more effectively staff your center.
  10. Technology – We focus on how you apply technology in your center. We look at your call platform, CRM, and tech support to make sure your technologies support your goals.

When your processes are less than ideal, it doesn’t matter how much business intelligence you have, how much planning you’ve done, or how many metrics you measure. Without smart execution, it’s easy to get off track quickly.

GCS’s Call Center Improvement Tool can help you form a foundation for excellence in your contact center. Get ready to transform your center’s performance and reap lasting, measurable benefits!

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