Is Call Quality Slip-Slidin’ Away?

Organizations wisely invest millions of dollars in their contact centers to gain efficiency and improve the customer experience.  They place their trust in the front line to represent their brand and speak on their behalf to thousands of customers and potential customers each day.  The assimilation of multi-channel communications into the contact center expanded the role of the customer care representatives.

Quality is non-negotiable.  Ignoring it will expedite its demise.  It is true that what gets measured, gets done.  Leaders can miss so much.  The pace quickens.  The lines blur.  Perfect vision is not an advantage unless we are looking in the right direction.   It is what it is, unless it isn’t.  We move at a rapid pace from where we are on our way to the next stop.  Why is it that we don’t remember how we got there?  Has that happened to you before?  To avoid being overwhelmed, we allow ourselves to be programmed on auto pilot.  Our surroundings pass us by.  

There are literally hundreds of metrics available to contact center leaders.  Not all are beneficial.  Not all are necessary.  Metrics that align with and support organizational goals should be measured and reported to executive leadership. Relevant data, presented in an easily interpreted format provides a foundation for wise, strategic business decisions.  

Metrics that validate an agent’s contribution to departmental and personal goals contribute to employee engagement and justify reward and recognition.  They also expose opportunities for additional training in specific areas and/or with specific agents.  

Etiquette is as important as any metric. While an agent may meet the metric for speed of answer, that alone does not indicate the quality of the call.   Did the agent greet the customer?  Identify themselves?  Identify who they represent? Explain what they were doing for the caller?  Thank them for choosing their organization?  Were they friendly? Compassionate?   Was their tone of voice welcoming?  These behavioral expectations may have been trained but without a quality program in place, customers will begin to recognize a slow decline in service standards.  The result – customers and potential customers “Slip Slidin’ Away.”

Paul Simon sang…
“… We’re working our jobs, collect our pay
Believe we’re gliding down the highway
When in fact we’re slip slidin’ away
Slip slidin’ away
Slip slidin’ away
You know the nearer your destination
The more you’re slip slidin’ away”  
What you look for you see.  What you see you can influence.  What you influence you can change.  What you change you can improve.  What you improve sustains quality.


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