Could poor audio quality be affecting your call center’s customer experience?

It’s extremely frustrating when you’re trying to have a teleconference meeting with your employees, in their own homes located across the city or even the entire country, and next thing you know you experience problems. Issues such as latency, jitter, or packet loss, can degrade communication to the point of the impossible, inevitably delaying workflow and potential business deals.  

Or your customer is struggling to have a conversation with your agent but takes twice as long as it should because the audio quality means you’re constantly repeating yourself. What impact would that have on your customer experience? And how could poor audio quality be affecting your contact center?  

It’s important to get the basics right first.

There are many tactics for improving customer experience, and hence CSat (customer satisfaction) levels, NPS (net promoter score), and CES (customer effort score). But, at its most basic level, your contact numbers need to connect your customer to an agent consistently. And the phone line needs to provide adequate audio quality so that they can conduct a clear conversation and address the customer’s issue effectively.

Poor audio quality will have a negative impact on your customers’ experience. That frequent flyer member will feel frustrated by the end of their call, and no matter how good their flight ends up being, that poor experience over the phone will stick.

Call durations/handling times and first call resolution

If both your customer and your agent are struggling to communicate through poor audio quality, the call may take longer to resolve. For inbound calls, in the worst cases, the customer may even have to call back to complete their objective, affecting both the customer’s experience and your first call resolution/first-time fix rate. For outbound sales and marketing calls or agent callbacks, customer experience can similarly suffer from poor audio quality, but so also can average call times – with an immediate impact on your bottom line.

For many contact centers, taking even a few seconds off each call, small improvements to first call resolution rates, or shaving a few valuable seconds off post-dial delay on all outbound calls, can represent a significant cost saving. Although it is impossible to completely eliminate the waiting time, there are many techniques that companies can use in the new year to reduce the on-hold time and minimize frustrated customers. Full trained agents, an online presence on different social media platforms, chatbots, and FAQs are all beneficial solutions to help minimize on-hold times.

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Agent experience

Attrition in the contact center is high — 25% to 40% on average — but can reach 100% in some contact centers, such as ones operated by business process outsourcing companies (BPOs). In fact, the 2020 Contact Center Pipeline Survey found that attrition is the No. 1 challenge for contact centers. Just as your customers suffer from poor audio quality, your agents do too. If you spend all day on the phone and are constantly having to repeat yourself to be understood, concentration and effort can cause fatigue.

If the audio quality on the calls coming in is poor, then an agent’s job is always going to be harder than it needs to be, they are always going to be prone to errors and they are always going to be exhausted by the effort involved. If you’re concerned about your agents’ experience (and are watching your advisor satisfaction/employee net promoter score (ENPS)), then one of the fundamental things you can do to improve this is to ensure that your lines have good audio quality.  

How do you know if you have a problem with audio quality?

Our number testing solutions let you test your contact numbers using over 70 in-country points of presence worldwide.These tools use an internationally recognized standard for measuring audio quality that takes into account parameters like variable delays, noise on the line, and clipping of audio.

With Spearline’s proactive monitoring and testing tools, your business can identify issues before your customer does, preventing your company from facing negative outcomes like customer churn and potential loss in revenue. The Spearline tests will determine precisely what the problem is, helping you to fix the issue promptly before it becomes too large an obstacle for you and your customers. Using an internationally-recognized standard for measuring audio quality, Spearline takes into account parameters like variable delays, noise on the line, and clipping of audio. You can read more about our test types here and learn more about our products here.   

Find out more about Spearline

If you are new to Spearline and would like to find out more about how you can benefit from the platform, we would love to speak with you. Please send us a brief message, and we will be in contact with you shortly.

Spearline’s platform proactively tests inbound telecommunications services, as well as dial-out. Connectivity and audio quality are monitored on fixed-line, SIP, or mobile networks, globally. Spearline enables organizations to provide uninterrupted services to customers around the world. For further information, or if you have any further questions please get in touch with us.

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