Using Analytics to Empower Agents and Improve Customer Experience

by Mark Egge | Contact Center Speech Analyst, Calabrio

Are you asking the right questions about your contact center? Are you finding the answers to those questions you’re asking? With the right Analytics solution in place, you can. Utilizing the power of a robust Analytics tool (speech, desktop, and text analytics) can help empower your agents to better serve the customer, and ultimately uncover previously hidden answers to a variety of looming questions. The result is a discovery of opportunities to improve your contact center efficiencies and overall customer experience, and it starts with the agents.

Agents are the contact center’s most valuable asset. Whether it’s over the phone, through an email, or via chat, agents are usually the first point of contact for customers and can heavily influence how these customers view the company. So how can you empower these agents to give the best possible service and improve the overall customer experience? You would have to start by examining the interactions customers have with your agents. However, it would be impossible to manually listen to and find meaningful insights from every interaction of every agent throughout the entire contact center. So, what next?

The answer: Analytics.

With a powerful Analytics solution that includes speech, desktop, and text analytics, contact centers can not only gather the relevant data from every interaction, but can also discover ways to empower their agents, ultimately improving the customer experience. Let’s explore a few of the questions you should be asking about your contact center agents and how analytics can help answer them:

How are agents utilizing their time and resources, and is it best for the customer?

Constantly monitoring how agents are spending their time is an impossible task. What are they doing while on the phone with customers? What applications do they have open while talking? These are all questions a powerful text and desktop analytics tool can answer. Analytics can detect the agents and conversations that are hindering customer experience. Whether an agent is using an application like Spotify, or on a website like YouTube, that is creating poor customer service, Analytics can highlight these interactions and provide opportunities to coach the agents and improve the customer experience. Monitoring and analyzing agent desktops can also identify processes that are timely and getting in the way of providing top-notch customer service. This can lead to streamlining processes and greater customer satisfaction.

Are customers receiving the level of service they deserve?

It is well known that a high level of First Call Resolution (FCR) usually results in a higher overall customer experience rating, and consequently a level of service customers deserve. Manually ensuring agents are providing a high level of customer service would require an unrealistic amount of time and attention. With analytics, contact centers can identify which agent interactions are resulting in customer call-backs, focus in on what is causing the customer to call back, and provide the right coaching and process improvements to the agent to ensure better customer service in the future. The result is an improvement to overall customer experience.

Are agents empowered to truly help the customer?

A common goal in any contact center is managing escalations. A higher percentage of escalations – or the ask to speak with a supervisor – tends to be associated with lower customer service and an overall poor customer experience. Contact centers that leverage a phonetics and/or speech-to-text analytics solution can zero-in on those interactions where customers are asking to speak with a supervisor. By isolating these conversations, contact center supervisors can reveal unique coaching opportunities, process issues, or even product complaints, to empower agents to handle these customer frustrations. Again, the result is happier customers and an increase in customer experience.

The analytics path does not end with merely answering these questions. To truly benefit from a robust analytics solution, contact centers should continue towards improvement by implementing simple, yet effective plans.

Share Analytics findings with management: A 2015 PwC survey of 1,300 CEOS in 77 countries, ranked data mining and Analytics as the second most strategically important technology for their organization, also stating that Data Analytics is the most important capability for understanding the true voice of the customer and delivering better customer experience. By sharing thoughts around improvement and providing long-term strategies to management, companies can begin to utilize the value of analytics. Data without insights and action is meaningless. However, with a commitment to Analytics, and the sharing of information, data can unlock the voice of the customer and provide an outline to management for improving customer experience and business efficiencies. 

Inform Agents of what was found: Analytics provides a unique opportunity to coach, train, and ultimately empower contact center agents to improve a company’s customer service and overall customer experience. On average, companies only analyze less than 1% of available data, according to IDC (International Data Corporation), making it impossible to identify any trends in customer interactions. Additionally, a manual attempt to audit every customer interaction to identify trends and opportunities is an unfeasible task. Analytics does this work for you. By combing and analyzing 100% of customer interactions, Data Analytics can pinpoint conversations that propose the chance for agent developments, process enhancements, and improvements to contact center efficiencies.

Expand Analytics across the organization: Analytics is powerful tool and can be utilized within multiple departments of an organization. Don’t be afraid to think outside of the contact center box; use analytics to identify cross-sell and upsell opportunities, increase customer retention, or analyze the effectiveness of marketing campaigns. Take for example a California-based credit union. After experiencing a drop in customer retention, the organization decided to implement Data Analytics across their 75 branches. With Analytics they were able to target customer frustrations and narrow in on an interaction point that many members felt could be improved. The credit union discovered that the ATM interface and process was irritating many members, forcing them to use other institutions’ ATMs.  With this knowledge in hand the credit union was able to make improvements to the ATM user experience, driving more members to use their 240 free ATMS more often, ultimately resulting in 1% customer retention increase, or about $1 million in added value. With Analytics, the contact center is no longer viewed as a necessary cost, but instead a critical part of the business that drives strategic value, and can ultimately increase profits.

The bottom line is Analytics can provide the previously hidden data needed to make business improvements, empower agents, and provide a more positive environment for both agents and customers, resulting in better customer experience.

So ask yourself; are you ready to reap the benefits of Analytics?

 

This special Insight post is brought to you in conjunction with our partner and Contact Center expert, Mark Egge from Calabrio.

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The thoughts and opinions in these blogs belong to the individual blogger and do not necessarily represent the views or opinions of Arrow Systems Integration.