Call Centers and Personality Mapping


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One of the keys to success in delivering great customer service in the call center is matching a customer to the right agent. This is why skill based routing was born. In today’s digital world companies realize they can no longer take the approach of treating every customer the same. They want to provide personalized service to each customer as much as possible in an effort to build customer loyalty. There is much to say about the rapport between a customer and an agent. There is that something “special” that occurs during a conversation that goes beyond traditionally trained soft skills, and it has to do with personality types “clicking”. This chemistry is what many organizations are looking to utilize in an attempt to enhance their customer experience.

So how can companies match customers to agents based on skill as well as personality? Not surprisingly, it is all about the data. You need to have access to detailed data on your customers including their personality traits, which can then be used to route calls to the correct agent. Think of it as another layer of customer information that includes details about behaviors, habits, and traits, and details that go beyond just demographical information, preferred method of contact, or last item purchased. These personality details are then used to match a customer with the most suitable agent through enhanced intelligent call routing.

Personality mapping is facilitated by technology that matches your customers to your agents based on personality. It uses information that you understand about your customers and your call center agents and matches people who are more likely to have an optimal result. What an “optimal result” means to your organization should be determined while building your business requirements when you are considering personality routing. For example, an optimal result for a call center could be increased revenues. If this is the case, customers would be routed to agents who are more likely to get sales.

Optimally aligning agent and caller personalities can make a difference in your call center performance. In your call center, you most likely have a group of agents who always do well, another group that is in the middle, and another group that performs below standards. As customer service professionals, we know agents matters in transactions. If a customer calls and speaks to an agent and has a poor contact outcome, if they had arrived at a different agent, the call may have resulted differently.

I do recommend personality mapping be used in call centers with 100 agents or more. As a general rule bigger is better than smaller when executing personality mapping. More agents create more transactions and it is transactions that develop your model faster. If you have a hundred agents dispositioning 10 calls an hour, then you have thousands of transactions in a day and your system will learn faster.

Personality mapping puts the right people together. You can use personality mapping in an effort to increase the buying opportunity, reduce miscommunications, reduce callbacks, and improve levels of customer and agent satisfaction. And nothing pleases me more knowing that when my retired father who hates call center (yes, really…) reaches out to his providers there is the potential that he may get routed to an agent who fears no difficult customer and can speak “cranky” with ease…

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Mary Cook
Mary Cook, Director of Contact Center Solutions for Varolii Corporation, provides companies with operational, contact center and CRM consulting services. Prior to Varolii, she was a principal at The Call Center Intelligence Agency, providing expertise and interim management services for worldwide contact center operations for clients within the entertainment, communications, financial services, consumer product and service provider industries. Prior to that, she spent 10 years managing contact center operations for iQor, AFNI, Kuehne + Nagel and FTD.


  1. Fascinating idea!
    What tools do you use to collect information about customers’ personalities? I would love to hear about studies which demonstrate the efficacy of this kind of routing. Are there any validations of personality mapping in practice?


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