Is the Marketing Department your call center survey support group?


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“Is the Marketing Department your call center survey support group?” is one of the self- assessment items in the 25 Mistakes to Avoid with Post-call IVR Surveys. This eBook consists of items designed to highlight attributes that are barriers to a successful customer experience measurement program. Take advantage of our knowledge and experience accumulated over the past 20 years since inventing post-call IVR surveying for call centers.

Why is this a problem?

By now most would agree that the management of a contact center is complex and challenging. How many other areas in your company require such a broad range of cooperation, knowledge, and expertise? Being the focal point of an organization draws attention that, at times, is not the kind that serves your service-focused mission.

Almost all organizations demand an explanation of how customers are being served, how the relationship is being protected, and how much value the contact center brings to the organization. Without a scientific approach to answering such questions, many call center managers are “helped” by the Marketing Department. The barrier to success starts here because applying the market research techniques used in the Marketing discipline does not transfer seamlessly to the contact center. Research in the contact center is face-paced, requires the collection of many surveys (with comments), content that allows for actionable outcomes of the analytics and is worthy of accountability for the center and for each agent.

I see voice of the customer projects in the contact center that use a methodology of live interviewer call backs in 24-48 hours to ask strategy level questions that lean largely toward the market research vein. Methodologies that work well for other research purposes do not work in the call center. Dictating how things are measured is bad but we also see the damage from the Marketing Department dictating what should be measured. If they influence your questions to be too market research-focused, you aren’t going deep enough into the customer experience to identify the key issues. A Customer Experience VoC approach for the contact center should be geared to holistically validate the customer findings. The Marketing Department too often prevents the understanding of the WHY behind the critical metrics and cannot extract those critical customer insights. Without the depth of analysis you will be condemned to the ineffectual club, always lacking the actionable customer initiatives that drive value.

And finally, the Marketing Department as survey support is too often actually lack of support when it comes to managing the data. Rarely will they apply an effective Survey Calibration process to improve the agents’ confidence in the evaluations. Without confidence, hanging your hat on such performance scores becomes an adversarial activity. It’s also very unusual for me to see the Marketing Department provide an analyst for the contact center. Without an analyst, data easily becomes a glorified comment card rather than the tactical tool you need for performance management.

The Solution

The solution may sound obvious but your customer post-call IVR survey needs to be owned and operated by the contact center. On the positive side, I am often called to help design programs by the Marketing Department because they do realize the difference between the two disciplines. On the other hand, some marketing departments do not accept the differences, want to own all survey processes, and want to dictate everything. When I see this occur, the unfortunate outcome is a post-call IVR survey program that serves the Marketing Department but not the call center and certainly not the customers.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Jodie Monger
Jodie Monger, Ph.D. is the president of Customer Relationship Metrics (CRM) and a pioneer in business intelligence for the contact center industry. Dr. Jodie's work at CRM focuses on converting unstructured data into structured data for business action. Her research areas include customer experience, speech and operational analytics. Before founding CRM, she was the founding associate director of Purdue University's Center for Customer-Driven Quality.


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