Call recording used to be considered a “nice to have” by anyone outside the large call centre environment or FSA-regulated financial companies. However, many companies are realising that a voice recorder can add a great deal of value to the business that more than justifies the cost.
Any company that communicates with its customers over the phone will have experienced disagreements about what was said. These do not necessarily need to end up in Court to have caused damage. Quite often, our customers tell us that, before the voice recorder was installed, whenever a dispute arose they often gave the customer the benefit of the doubt so as not to upset them, leading to the reduced profitability of having to provide extra goods or services all because “your sales guy said it was included”.
Most of these disputes do not arise from customers wishing to take advantage, they are often caused by a slip in memory or mishearing, where the customer may be absolutely convinced that a certain thing was promised. In such cases a polite note in an email that includes a copy of the recording sent will often have the customer apologising for their error.
Speed is of the essence, as this is most effective as soon as the customer claims that something was said, before the relationship deteriorates, the customer has involved his boss and perhaps contracts have been cancelled.
One of our customers, a large council with a correspondingly large recorder, has saved so much money this way that their voice recorder paid for itself in three months!
As Ruth Badger showed on the “Badger or Bust” TV series, a voice recorder can be an invaluable management tool for the sales manager/helpdesk manager to listen to calls and, more importantly I would argue, be able to play the call back to the staff member and ask them what they think about the call. As Ruth Badger said, referring to the installation of the new Storacall Voice Recorder into a small sales team “It is the best thing I’ve done for that company!”
Quality has always been important in helpdesks and small call centres, as the cost of staff justifies any tool that leads to improving the performance of the staff. But measuring quality used to rely on the supervisor sitting next to the agent with their headset plugged into the agent’s phone, with the clear risk that the supervisor was not marking a typical call by that agent, but rather the call they make when they are aware they are being measured.
Nowadays even small helpdesks are able to invest in a voice recorder with a fully integrated quality monitoring tool, enabling the supervisor to take a random sample of recordings for an agent, mark their scores against a balanced scorecard of quality measures such as listening skills, product knowledge, “bedside manner” and so on. In addition the supervisor can highlight training needs and develop a whole file, including the score, bookmarked recordings or “soundbites” (showing why a particular score was given) and the training plan for the agent.
This approach provides the agents with a clear development plan, improving quality and improving staff retention, while providing a clear audit trail for HR purposes.
Reduced recruitment and training cost, people performing their job better, as well as reduced chances of customer churn and litigation. Is it fair to say that the voice recorder is now a “must have” rather than a “nice to have”?
- Questions to ask your Call Recording Supplier
- A list of Call Recording Suppliers
- Call Recording Case Studies
Alex Leighton of Storacall