All outbound calling campaigns face challenges. The public is wary of unknown calls and often chooses not to answer them. Consumers tend to suspect that telemarketing calls are fraudulent and a way to steal personal data. If your agents do manage to connect to a lead, it’s essential that they have the skills to convert the call into a sale.
One way to address an agent’s proficiency is through call scoring, an important method that allows managers to analyze and gauge an agent’s skill set. This process can be used to provide agent incentives, identify areas that need improvement, and recognize agents that excel.
What is Call Scoring?
Every industry has a way of measuring employee success. For call centers, call scoring fills that need. Through recorded calls or call transcriptions, it evaluates the effectiveness of a call based on performance standards set by managers. This process is not the same for every contact center, but most of these companies follow a similar format.
Before implementing your call scoring process, your managers must establish the criteria they will use to judge agent performance. Then you will need to implement a system to monitor, analyze, and provide feedback for calls to foster improvement. As a professional in this industry, you recognize excellence in an agent when you hear it, but it’s essential that you codify your expectations when it comes to call content, call quantity, and conversion rates, among other considerations.
Categories to Analyze in a Call Scoring Strategy
While the metrics or factors a manager analyzes can and do vary, the following standards should generally be included in your scoring strategy:
The telecommunications industry is under intense scrutiny by consumers and government regulators, so your agents must meet compliance standards. Outbound dialing employees need to abide by regulations such as DNC, TCPA, and STIR/SHAKEN. If your company makes outbound calls about medical issues, you have to follow HIPAA regulations. If your company uses processing software to accept payments, it is subject to Payment Card Industry Data Security regulations.
In addition to these federal government regulations, your industry has created its own set of compliance standards. That means your agents have many rules and regulations to follow and need your feedback to ensure proper compliance as they make their daily calls.
Your company probably has its own standards and ethics for agents to follow as well. You want to make certain that your agents are abiding by ethical dialing practices, so they don’t harm consumers or damage your company’s reputation. You have to verify that your agents are not using a bad lead list or an inaccurate script to contact potential customers.
Positive customer engagement requires that your agents know your product and services inside and out. Consumers are not interested in wasting time. Your agents must be able to quickly and accurately give their leads the information they desire.
When managers analyze agents’ interactions with customers, they can identify those that may need further training. This method can also help improve training for new agents by identifying common misconceptions about your products or services.
Following Sales Scripts
Your sales scripts should empower your agents to close deals. Therefore, managers typically devise scripts to guide the flow of a conversation. By adding this element to call scoring, your managers can determine if scripts are written properly for the current campaign. You can also identify agents that stray from scripts as well as analyze their overall performance.
Important Scoring Factors
Of course, call scoring does not work unless you establish fair and meaningful criteria. Setting the proper criteria is the best way to help agents improve their performance. The following are fundamental elements to analyze in call scoring:
First impressions count. Is your agent properly greeting leads or customers? Are they identifying your business and the intent of the call clearly? If not, their chances for conversion are slim to none.
Your agents should verify they are speaking to the person on the list they dialed. This step could ensure they are not giving sensitive information to the wrong person. In addition, phone numbers change frequently, so your lead information might be out of date. Imagine if a medical or educational facility revealed highly personal details to the wrong party because they did not verify the call recipient.
Call Handling/Quality Assurance
You will need to judge the quality of the call as well. Did your agents handle the call adequately? Were they polite, informative, and helpful? Did they follow established internal company procedures? Proper quality assurance can identify agents that take shortcuts, break the rules, or need more training. Furthermore, agent conduct is important to promoting your company’s brand. One rude, uninformed agent can lose your company dozens if not hundreds of customers. It is essential to incorporate quality assurance standards to measure how calls are handled.
After-call work can be time-consuming if you don’t provide the proper tools to your agents. The right software and adequate after-call time will help ensure your agents are properly updating customer records in your contact center. Failure to keep good records can lead your agents to violate consumer requests about further contact.
Call Scoring Helps Customer Engagement
Call scoring requires time and effort to do correctly. It means putting your agents under close scrutiny and may include listening to recorded calls together. But the process is certainly worth it. Call scoring can help get your agents on the same page as management, which leads to better customer engagement and higher conversion rates. This process ultimately will improve the customer’s experience while making your agents more effective and happier with their jobs.