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Understanding and Responding to Your Customers During COVID-19

March 27, 2020 by Morgan Pulitzer

Understanding Agent-Customer Conversations During Times of Crisis

It’s safe to say that most, if not all of us have never experienced a pandemic like COVID-19. As the coronavirus health crisis and “social distancing” practices continue, most businesses are encouraging employees to work from home. The uncertainty of the future has placed a great deal of stress on business owners and their employees.

That’s why it is important for businesses to maintain a “business as usual” approach. And delivering excellent service to customers is more important now than ever, as consumers flood social media with complaints about unprecedented hold times. But how do you know if your agents are providing the best customer experience?

If you are recording calls, you have all the data you need. Monitoring and analyzing agent-customer conversations is critical during a crisis. Here’s how you can monitor agent performance and ensure customer satisfaction from a distance.

Send Agents to the Front Lines Prepared

Your customers are likely to have more questions and concerns than ever. Contact center agents are mostly likely the first people customers will interact with, though many businesses have temporarily moved employees in other departments to CS to help with the influx of calls. No matter whom your customers speak with, anyone answering the phone needs to have the resources to handle any call. Agent scripts are an easy way to ensure consistency and avoid compliance issues.

On that note, it’s important to mention that agents who fail to remain fully script compliant can cost the business a lot of money in fines or even lawsuits. And since difficult times often result in angry customers, agents also need the skills necessary to diffuse tense situations. Businesses now have the technology needed to automate quality monitoring in a cost-effective way.

Capturing critical insights from these interactions, and monitoring customer sentiment, can be done through searchable call transcriptions with emotion detection. These are just a few ways for businesses to ensure script compliance and improve agent training (see our case studies for more examples).

Anticipate Scenarios for Your Agents

While a crisis can raise expected customer concerns, your contact center agents may not have considered every scenario. That’s why its imperative that you anticipate these scenarios for your agents. Implementing a speech analytics solution with scorecards gives managers the ability to score agents and provide consistent feedback.

QA managers can also glean success stories in which agents handled a call successfully. Then use those real-life examples in training materials. This is the best way to address what matters most to customers and prepare your agents with the answers to actual questions from your own customers.

Once you have this knowledge, you can use it to facilitate both short-term and long-term solutions. Here’s a recap on how you can use this valuable information from customer conversations:

  • Amend contact center scripts to better prepare agents for any situations
  • Implement operational changes to address your customers’ specific concerns
  • Share information across various departments to affect change as an organization
  • Show customers you care about their feedback throughout the customer journey

Unprecedented times call for unprecedented stress levels, for customers and agents alike. Having 100% visibility into customer-agent conversations is the first step to alleviating that stress. Using tools such as call recording and call monitoring features can allow you to gain this knowledge faster and with more accuracy.

When we come out the other side together, your agents will be thankful you helped ease their burden, and your customers will appreciate your willingness to listen and remain loyal to your business.

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