By their very nature, contact centers receive a high volume of telephone calls. Often unknown to them, their customers may be unable to contact them due to issues in the wider network, errors in call termination/routing, or other. Additionally, customers may be experiencing poor audio quality, making it impossible to have a good conversation.
Contact centers may be unaware of problems unless a customer complains, which only 4% do, or, worse again, switches to a competitor. As well as negatively impacting on CX and reputation, poor quality is an unnecessary and significant expense for the business.
Consider a “representative contact center” handling 200,000 calls per month, with an average handling time (AHT) of 10 minutes and a measured cost-per-call of $12.00. Research indicates the potential for communication challenges to accumulate more than $1.3M in annual cost.
That very significant cost accumulates “1 minute at a time” as customer conversations suffer the need to repeat and clarify, or disconnect and reconnect. Costs grow as technical issues identified by frustrated customers are escalated to technical staff and network suppliers, and they also grow hugely as the genuine commercial impact of a customer call “gone wrong” impacts business.
The “representative contact center” arrives at $1.3M in potential cost savings because:
Agent efficiency is reduced, customer effort is increased
Call handling time is extended due to the need for repetition and clarification where poor audio prevents an easy and comfortable conversation.
In ContactBabel's “The UK Contact Centre Decision-Maker's Guide 2018-19 (16th edition)”, researchers point to industry waste approaching $177M based on the need to repeat conversation elements due to poor audio. Their research indicates that as much as 10% of calls are impacted by issues and that the poor communication results in a 4.54% increase in average call duration. This is time consuming for both your agents and your customers, not to mention costly for your business.
Spearline's data shows us that while newer users may be working with a 10% impact rate, long term customers see a much lower rate in the area of 1-2% based on proactive management. In assessing our customers’ return on investment (ROI), we find that the platform average is 3.04%.
Taking the more conservative 3.04% as an impact rate, and considering the 4.54% overhead on average handling time, the cost impact in efficiency terms alone is approximately $40K.
Technical problems require troubleshooting
Not all audio quality faults will be reported and escalated. Based on 5% of experienced issues being reported, we find that, for the above customer, the annualized cost of trouble-ticket processing, analysis and resolution is more than $50k, using a conservative average ticket cost of $15.56 (ref HDI, 2017, Service Desk Cost per Ticket).
Unfortunately for most businesses, failure to report, investigate and resolve audio quality issues means that there are perpetual issues impacting customer conversations. With the Spearline automated test platform, results are efficiently and effectively ticketed, thereby increasing CX and decreasing cost. As a result, the business’ brand and bottom line are also improved.
Maintain revenue, loyalty and low churn
Businesses vary widely and their internal considerations for the business impact of a bad customer call will depend on their product/service, the nature of their market, and more. In 2017, Spearline customer analysis showed that customers consider 28% of low quality calls to have notable commercial impact.
In considering the revenue impact per call of our “representative contact center”, a factor of 5x cost-per-call is a modest assessment of the value of that customer call to the business. Actual commercial impact might be much higher where the lifetime value of a customer is taken into account alongside churn driven by poor customer experience.
The commercial impact of accumulated calls “gone wrong” exceeds $1.2M.
Replicate your customers’ experience
The Spearline platform tests calls using the paths that your customers use to contact you - from in-country landline or mobile connections, toll and toll-free. The platform experiences your network as your customers do. Interested in finding out more? Book a free demo here.
Maximize customer interactions
Spearline develops a proactive testing and monitoring schedule for our customers to maximize the effectiveness of their customer interactions. This leads to increased CX and lower costs. Spearline customers enjoy:
- Improvements in first contact resolution and reduced callback volumes
- Proactive identification of issues and improvements in incident MTTR
- Reduced CX derived customer churn and revenue protection
- Support for major change initiatives / migrations
- Improved vendor management and leverage to improve carrier pricing or apply SLA penalties
- Improved NPS/CSAT and brand reputation
If you operate a contact center, how do you retain customers and improve their experience while protecting your brand and bottom line?
Spearline is the leading network intelligence company in the telecommunications industry. Our platform enables enterprises and telecommunications service providers to test connectivity and quality on global telecoms networks, testing automatically at volume. If you are interested in our platform, or would like more information, please get in touch with us.