The Importance of Audio Quality in Call Centers
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- On June 1, 2011
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Telephony is the main (and usually the only) communication channel between Call Centers and their customers. The efficiency and quality of the telephony interactions between a Call Center and its customers is a key factor to the Call Center’s business success. This efficiency and quality can be divided to two major categories: Information & Technology.
Information in Call Center
Does the representative have all the information available to satisfy the customer’s need? Does the representative have the data to execute an efficient cross-sell or up-sell? To positively answer these questions and similar ones, CRM software products are used. The aim of these products is to quickly give to the representative a “360 view” of the customer.
Technology in Call Center
How much time does a customer have to wait before talking to a representative? What is the effectiveness of the IVR? Once the customer talks to a representative is the audio clear enough to prevent mistakes and prevent the need to repeat sentences?
There are many vendors that provide technology solutions to improve and monitor queue handling and IVR systems. One method of improving the interaction is via ASR.
With regards to audio quality, according to the latest UK Contact Centers Decision Makers guide, improving audio and speech quality can positively impact overall contact center performance: “calls were handled more quickly, fewer mistakes were made with data collection and overall, agents handled an average of 10% more calls per day”.
There are several options for improving audio quality.
Hardware Based Solution for Improving Audio Quality in Call Centers
The goal is to isolate each representative either physically or via special devices from the ambient noise of the call center.
High Quality Headset
Each representative is using high quality headsets that reduce the amount of ambient noise.
These solutions rely on a dedicated hardware and therefore in addition to the initial heavy cost there is also a heavy maintenance fee on replacing broken/malfunction hardware. Please note that these solution are usually not very effective in attenuating background human voices. Also, these solutions do not improve the audio that is coming from the customer. Therefore, if the customer is calling from a noisy environment these hardware based solutions will not help.
Software Based Solution for Improving Audio Quality in Call Centers
Software solutions are usually quicker to implement and provides ROI much faster than hardware solutions. The noise firewall is an innovative software that provides a much better quality than hardware based-solution by using sophisticated algorithms that correlated the audio from all agents in order to identify the source of noise. You can think of the noise-firewall as a software-based multi-agent headset. The noise-firewall works with any infrastructure and can be easily integrated in any telephony network. In addition to removing ambient noise that is originated from the call center, the noise-firewall also removes ambient noise that is surrounding the customer and adjusts volume to make sure no words are being missed.
Can I evaluate the Noise-Firewall?
The noise-firewall was designed to allow you to easily test the improvement in your call center prior to making any purchase decision. This is done by configuring the evaluation version of the noise-firewall to filter a small portion of the calls while recording their audio and their statistics. After few days, the statistics log can be easily analyzed and in addition you can hear for yourself the “before & after” of selected calls. Please contact us to get a copy of the recent case studies including live examples.