There are so many debates about metrics and when you consider them most metrics have pros and cons. However, I like to think of metrics in terms of how they will enhance customer service, how they will help you serve your customers, keep your agents happy and ultimately help you grow your business – now, that’s exciting. Quantitative metrics have their place as they can provide you with very valuable information. But qualitative metrics really shift the focus towards the heart of the business, the customer. It’s no longer just about answering their call, but rather how well their queries are being resolved.

With qualitative metrics, there are two things you’re looking at: The standards of performance and if specific objectives are being met. Having insight into these metrics is really valuable as it will enable you to see where your agents are performing well and where they may need some additional support, training or coaching.

Standards of performance:

Ideally what you’d like to establish with this metric is the minimum acceptable level of performance provided by agents to customers. Some things that could be measured are how customers are greeted, how their account details are verified, and how accurately information is provided by the agents. Some phrases can be scripted for new agents so that they get to know what is appropriate. As they gain more experience, some flexibility can be allowed as long as they understand and deliver on what is appropriate.

Standards that could be measured could include the tone of voice – was it polite, warm and friendly? Speed of speech – speaking too fast could mean the customer might miss what is being said, and the agent could give the impression that they are either nervous (which doesn’t inspire confidence) or too busy for the customer (which makes the customer feel unimportant). Speaking too slowly could indicate the agent is unsure of how to respond or could indicate boredom – once again neither of which inspire confidence.

FCR (First Call Resolution) is a metric that is both quantitative and qualitative. Providing accurate answers and being able to resolve a query on the first call indicates that customers are being served well. Information is being provided accurately and proper assistance results in a happier customer.

What does quality customer service mean to you?

Objectives will be quite specific to your business and call centre. They will outline what is important to your business in terms of delivering quality customer service. When expecting agents to meet these objectives, it is important that adequate training and coaching is provided so that agents are empowered to serve customers in the way you’d like them to. These objectives can go a long way to creating the culture of your contact centre. If the focus is on building a rapport with customers, being empathetic, communicating clearly, managing customer expectations, and learning to handle challenges it creates a customer focus. With this focus on the customer, it’s certain to raise the quality of service provided by your contact centre agents, and what’s more exciting than that?!
If this article has whetted your appetite to learn more about qualitative and quantitative metrics, Real Results can help. Find out more about our Contact Centre Training here.