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Call data analytics software enables companies of all shapes and sizes to pinpoint problem areas in their call handling procedures and to examine the performance of their customer service agents in great detail. The recently announced Service Wave Analytics app from software-as-a-service giant Salesforce is just one of a new generation of applications that seeks to make analysing customer service data simpler and more intuitive, with visual representations of performance metrics. However, investing in such software is just the first step to turbocharging your call handling performance; it is how you interpret the results of your analysis and what action you take afterwards that really matters.

Examining the Evidence

Although new analytics applications such as the above mentioned Service Wave app will enable you to drill down into the details of your call handling performance in a number of different ways, the basic facts and figures should always come first. When you start to monitor your customer service metrics, pay particular attention to the following areas.

  • Answered vs Missed Calls – This is the first and most important place to start when analysing call data. Every missed call could cost your company money so it is essential to find out when and why calls are not being answered, if this is indeed the case. A visual representation, displaying the ratio of answered to missed calls at certain times of the day, makes it easy to see when your sales team may be experiencing difficulties in keeping up with the volume of enquiries they are receiving. It can also help you to identify technical faults that are resulting in calls being missed completely.
  • Location – Another important area to consider when analysing call data is from where the calls that your sales department is receiving are being made. Whilst it will make no difference to the ability of your customer service agents to actually answer the calls in question, it could have implications for the way that enquiries should be handled. In the service industries in particular, potential customers often feel more comfortable talking to somebody who sounds as if they come from the same geographical region. In addition to helping you fine-tune your call handling performance, location data may give you clues as to how well your marketing and advertising activities are performing in different parts of the country.
  • New vs Existing – The ratio of new vs existing customers who are calling will give you a very good indication of the effect that your latest advertising campaign is having. It will also give you an early indication of the need to expand your call handling ability, which could save you hundreds of thousands of pounds in lost business if heeded. When you can see a visual representation of the ratio changing, it is much easier to anticipate the likely volume of calls you will receive in the future and to prepare well in advance.

More Advanced Metrics

The ability to drill into the finer details of your call handling performance that apps such as the one currently being piloted by Salesforce have to offer will enable you to examine the facts and figures on a case by case basis if desired. You will be able to identify the weakest links in the chain as far as individual customer service agents are concerned, and you will have the ability to spot badly handled enquiries that may cost you a sale if not addressed immediately. The flexibility of the latest software applications allows an almost limitless number of ways in which you may combine and analyse data, giving companies access to a far greater level of detail on the performance of their sales team than ever before.

Taking Action

The most advanced call data analytics software in the world is of little use if you fail to act on the results. If you want to make sure that you are capitalising on every enquiry your company receives, you need to take action once you have analysed your call data. The best courses of action to take will depend on what you discover.

  1. Missed Calls – If you are missing a large number of calls at certain times of the day, or perhaps just on specific days when several of your employees are absent for one reason or another, you should consider using an overflow call handling service. Every call that your team is unable to answer can be channelled to a remote call centre and dealt with by a professional agent. Messages can be taken and passed immediately to your sales team, who can then prioritise the calls they feel are most important and return them without delay. Customers will respond far better to delays when they are actually able to speak to somebody who represents your organisation and be assured that their call is important.
  1. Location Data – If you discover that a large number of your calls are coming from one specific region, and that your conversion rate from these enquires is lower than it should be, you may wish to consider having those calls answered by different agents. Companies who currently work with overseas call centres may find a UK-based telephone answering service more effective.
  1. New vs Existing – In the event that a new marketing campaign results in the ratio of new to existing customer enquiries growing, you may like to take advantage of the media response service offered by companies such as ours.

Whichever analytics software application you are currently using, it is important to pay attention to what it is trying to tell you. Acting swiftly, and asking for help when necessary, could have a very positive effect on your bottom line.

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