When customers contact Customer Service, they want answers to their questions, fast. Every second they spend on the line waiting for a resolution to their problem affects the customer experience — and the bottom line.
That's what the Customer Service Coaching Quality and Efficiency Quality Action Team (QAT) recognized when they began assessing an issue with call times within Customer Service Operations. Their goal was to identify the root cause of the increasing call times and strategies for reducing them.
5% increase in average call time
Finding Opportunities in the Data Since call centers already have access to an abundance of data — such as average handle time, time spent on hold, call transfer rate, and more — the QAT focused on collecting data from Customer Service leadership. With a simple survey that they wrote and distributed in less than 24 hours, the QAT gathered data about how leadership across Customer Service Operations handled issues.
Responses to the survey showed that there was no set procedure for tackling problems. Each manager had their own process for coaching, addressing issues, and using — or neglecting — the analytics available to them. In fact, almost 73% of Customer Service managers were not using the data provided to them to identify problems and coach team members.
To develop a best practices guide for managers, the team interviewed managers whose team members were significantly outperforming other teams. Based on manager responses, the QAT identified which tools managers could use to increase service levels and tools that needed to be created.
Flipping the Script
The QAT created a new playbook for Customer Service leaders with best practices and tips based on the habits of highly-successful managers. The document contained a detailed breakdown of how much time managers should devote to each task, such as data analysis or individualized coaching.
The QAT brought 92 Customer Service leaders, including managers and managing directors, to Memphis in groups of 20 for a two-day facilitator-led workshop. Managers were skeptical going into the training class, but found that the new playbook offered easy-to-use tools to identify opportunities for coaching.
real-time feedback from managers
increase in coaching
improved customer experience
second reduction in average call time
QAT Member Inspired by Quality Driven Management
Project manager Jessica Melton was an early adopter of QDM. You might call her a quality evangelist. Now senior advisor at FedEx Freight, Jessica still uses and promotes QDM on a daily basis — on newly formed QATs, while identifying bottlenecks or process waste on her own team, and in her home life.
When people ask why they should use the ABLE process and other QDM tools, Jessica advises, "QDM gives you simple steps to follow, and you don't have to have a degree in engineering to follow those steps. It's a recipe to solve problems."