Contact Center Hall of Shame
- Mysterious fees – hitting customers with fees that are unanticipated, not approved, unexplained and not under their control. (This practice is referred to as “cramming,” and when caught by the Federal Trade Commission, results in major penalties.)
- Surprise buys – companies that use fine print to hide subscription renewals or service upgrades that come as a nasty surprise when they show up on the consumer’s credit card statement.
- Relentless up-sells – companies that push up-sells so hard that customers feel cornered and sometimes even threatened.
- Dead-end interactive voice response (IVR) systems – forcing callers to use an automated system that prevents them from speaking to a live agent.
- Clueless agents – putting agents on the phone who are not properly trained or fully prepared with the information they need to do their job.
- Rude agents – hiring the wrong people, and not teaching them that being nice is essential in a customer service role.
- Blaming the company – using “company policy” as an excuse to do nothing.
- Not listening to customers – agents who ignore what the customer says and requests, as they aggressively strive to achieve their performance goals.
- Using red tape to avoid helping customers – companies that make it so hard to get a refund or cancel your account that the caller just gives up.
- Speed not need – agents who rush the caller off the phone.
- “50 Shades of Green” – companies that wave the “green flag,” professing a commitment to environmental awareness, yet clearly not really doing their part, as they continue to send out a massive amount of paper-based communications.
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Ask the Experts
What is the difference between total cost of ownership (TCO) and return on investment (ROI)?
Total cost of ownership (TCO) and return on investment (ROI) are both financial metrics used to measure the value and rank of IT and other projects. But TCO and ROI are not the same thing, and have different strengths and weaknesses as decision-making tools.
ROI is the term used for a group of financial metrics that assess the capital efficiency of investments and can be used to rank their attractiveness. The three ROI metrics most commonly used are:
- Net present value (NPV) – takes the cash inflows from a project, less the related cash outflows, and adjusts for the time value of the money. If the sum of the present values for all of a project’s cash flows is positive, it is projected to more than cover its cost of capital, and therefore be a worthwhile investment.
- Internal rate of return (IRR) – the rate at which the present value of all project cash outflows is equal to the present value of its inflows. This measures an implied rate of return for the project. If the IRR for a project is greater than the cost of capital, it is generally considered a worthwhile investment.
- Payback period – calculates the length of time required for an investment’s net cash inflows to cover all of its initial costs. This shows how long it will take to get the invested money back, but ignores all benefits after the break-even date, and also ignores much of the timing of the cash flows.
DMG Consulting LLC is a leading independent research, advisory and consulting firm specializing in unified communications, contact centers, back-office and real-time analytics. Learn more at www.dmgconsult.com.