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Three contact centre trends that will have an impact in 2015.

As the New Year kicks off, it has become customary to many industries to summarise the successes and failures of the past year or make predictions for the future. So, in time-honoured tradition I’ve pulled out three trends that I think are going to have an impact on the industry in 2015.

1. Managers will continue to prioritise quality monitoring over quantitative metrics

Over the last 12 months there has been a growing recognition that traditional quantitative metrics alone are no longer sufficient for organisations wanting to deliver an outstanding customer experience. How many times have you heard the phrase – “You get what you measure”. It’s true, if you weigh your metrics towards efficiency, then of course you’re very likely to get efficient results – but at what cost to the quality of the customer experience?

If you want to drive real improvements in quality, monitoring must go beyond spreadsheets and a tick box approach. But building a performance-based culture takes real commitment and a bit of risk. For example, we’ve recently worked with a client who took the bold decision to stop measuring average handle time (AHT) at agent level. Of course, the business uses this metric to plan, schedule and resource, but when evaluating individual agent performance, it focuses on more customer-oriented metrics like quality, customer satisfaction and first contact resolution.

2. The customer journey is being tracked more precisely

As building a customer-centric contact centre becomes an even higher priority, organisations will focus on mapping the customer journey rather than business processes. A growing number of contact centres are already beginning to realise the benefits of putting the customer at the heart of their processes. By building real-time customer feedback and action-focused insight into your business improvement framework, you can better understand what those journeys currently feel like and how they could be changed to improve loyalty.

3. Customers will become increasingly fed up with tick box survey requests.

The increasing focus on Voice of the Customer programmes brings with it a danger of ‘survey fatigue’ as customers begin to experience a deluge of feedback requests. But this can be a conundrum for managers since feedback is vital to the customer-centric contact centre. To overcome this, focus on tailored surveys that ask open-ended questions and give you an insight into how the customer really feels.