How data can improve customer call centre experience

Warren Newbert

By Warren Newbert
22 Mar 2023

5 min read


Remote working. cost of living. economic crash. Consumers and employees alike are currently navigating frustrating and muggy waters – and for those trying to manage a successful call centre in a customer-first environment where customers are struggling, it can be quite challenging.

Call centres are at the heart of good customer experiences. Our recent survey found that poor call centre experiences are currently costing businesses up to 84% of returning customers. That is a hefty percentage that undoubtedly has a massive impact on a company’s overall profitability. On top of this, call centre leaders are expected to run an operation that is efficient, customer-centric, and effective, yet they’re constantly getting asked to move fast and do more with less. The repercussions of not doing this put the entire operations team at serious risk of drastically increasing overtime costs, seeing customer experience plummeting, and worse, watching your profitability decrease.

Over the last decade alone there have been tremendous advancements in call centre technology that have transformed how organisations can gather and process data at scale to provide helpful patterns and insights to improve call centre agents’ productivity and training. Today’s data-driven world has caused a fundamental change in the way call centres drive adaptive management to improve their customer services and boost performance. By its sheer nature, a call centre churns out customer conversation data that can be analysed to drive insights into agent productivity and customer behaviours.

To stay ahead of their competition, all centre managers need to leverage this data and monitor the impact that process changes and training have on metrics such as first call resolution, average handling time, and agent idle time.  

How do you analyse data in a call centre?

Metrics are the most effective way of monitoring and measuring the performance of a call centre. Tracking the right metrics can unlock a wealth of insights that will make call centre operations more effective than ever. With real customer data call centres can streamline the customer journey, improve call centre operations, deliver exceptional customer service and even increase your profits.

However, a common challenge for call centres is the ability to extract customer insights data from each phone call at scale. Call centre software is perfectly placed to provide call centre leaders with data that can improve your call centre reporting.

This is where Conversation Analytics tools can help by capturing the data needed to build smoother customer journeys, resolve issues faster and reduce manual work involved in handling multiple calls. With Conversation Analytics, you can evolve your tactics based on real data from your customers, instead of relying on intuition. It can tell you things such as:  

Why people are getting in touch, by monitoring and logging the topics of conversation, including any associated keywords and phrases.

The outcome of each call, so you can surface trends from calls that delivered positive or successful outcomes.

How customer sentiment is changing throughout the call, so you can pinpoint exactly what makes the phone call experience positive or negative and improve from there.

This data not only helps improve customer experience but also enables businesses to tailor their approach to call agent training – and realistically, a well-trained call agent can make or break a customer’s day.

Shifting your call centre training to be more data-driven

The reality is call agent training is always going to be one of the key pillars of running a successful call centre. As the industry advances, so do the methods we use to ensure our workforce is performing at its best. A successful call centre training programme should not just be part of your onboarding process; it should continue through each call agent’s career journey. The only way to do this is to create training programmes that place customer data at the heart of it.

This data-driven training strategy can effectively uncover and bring into balance the goals, needs, and realities of the call centre, employees and of course the customers. It plays a key role in keeping call agents aligned in their approach and messaging as they support customers daily.

Additionally, utilising data can help call centres forecast their staffing and training needs. As a result, call centres can rest assured that the right people are in place at the right time to assist callers. If you understand what your call drivers are, you can accurately forecast call patterns and plan accordingly. For example, if you know open enrolment is coming up, you may want to offer refresher training and schedule your most knowledgeable staff at key calling times. Using this type of data-driven learning ensures that learning and development are focused on high-value and high-impact initiatives.

Turning your call centre agents into your MVP.

According to a recent UK GOV report, the UK currently plays house to 5.5 million businesses. The reality is the competition across all industries in the UK is fierce. But how do the top dogs stay ahead of the rest? The key really does lie in using technology to improve customer service. We live in an increasingly remote society, where businesses do the large majority of their interactions with customers via phones, tablets and computers. In fact, the only human interaction is often over the phone. The volume and rate of incoming customer service calls only continue to rise – a recent Deloitte survey found that over half (53%) of participating companies expect their total contact volume to increase over the next 5 years.

In 2023, customer experience is seen as the key factor that makes or breaks deals, driving customer loyalty. A study by McKinsey found that businesses are embracing call centres analytics to reduce average call handle time by 40% and optimise conversion rates by almost 50%!

Using data to enhance call centre agent training can not only give businesses a 360-degree view of employee performance but it can also empower them to fundamentally reshape the learning and development process. With the right call centre solution and a strategy to expedite the decision-making in your company, you’ll be well on your way to standing out from the crowd.

Keen to leverage your call data to start refining the customer experience you deliver? Start a conversation with us today to find out how.

Originally published in HR Director

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