Call Center Quality Assurance Best Practices for Empowering Agents
By Donna Fluss
Contact center quality assurance (QA) remains a high-value application, particularly when it’s done right. Effective QA programs actively engage their agents at all stages of the program, including development, roll-out, calibration and continuous improvement.
Here are some best practices to help your company succeed with a QA initiative:
- Involve agents in the development of the QA program. If you already have a QA program, involve agents in calibration sessions and providing feedback to enhance the evaluation form periodically, but no less often than every 6 months.
- Include a module in the new agent training program that fully explains the QA program. (If possible, have the lead QA person deliver this module so new agents get acquainted with them.)
- Ensure the head of QA and all of the evaluators have hands-on experience and truly know what it takes to handle inquiries and interactions.
- Coach the coaches so your QA specialists and supervisors are comfortable giving feedback to agents and don’t avoid this task.
- Evaluate a large enough sample of interactions in each channel to make the feedback valuable.
- Document the QA criteria and what is expected for each call type so that call scoring is objective and agents know what is expected of them.
- Encourage coaches to share positive feedback as well as constructive criticism.
- Perform QA consistently throughout the month and close to when an interaction is completed so that agents have a chance or remembering the discussion.
- Allow agents to evaluate their own interactions, as they are typically harder on themselves than an evaluator would be.
- Give agents a dashboard that delivers their QA scores and evaluations to them on a timely basis so they can self-correct.
- Make it easy for agents to challenge an evaluation or score as this can generate very positive conversations about how to improve performance.
- Use gamification to recognize and reward agents for doing a good job.
- Use QA scores as part of agents’ semi-annual and annual evaluations so they appreciate the importance of the QA program.
Most importantly, listen to your agents when they provide feedback about your call center quality assurance program or any other aspect of your contact center.