Banking 365 proves the value of quality monitoring

BANK of Ireland's telephone banking service, Banking 365, has saved more than £200,000 a year thanks to call recording and quality monitoring from Eyretel.

Its two centres, in Dublin and Kilkenny, employ about 175 agents who handle around 1m calls a month on topics such as bill payments, balance enquiries and fund transfers.
Launched in 1996, Banking 365 has a reputation for quality -- 88 per cent of customers said they were satisfied with the service [January-October 2001] and 97 per cent were satisfied with its agents (Irish Marketing Surveys).
Joe Sheehan, telecoms manager, puts much of this success down to a combination of specialised recruitment, intensive training, one-to-one coaching and performance-based rewards.

But, he admits, running these innovative programmes has not been without its challenges. Fairly rewarding agents on the basis of their performance, for example, was difficult when all the company had were PBX statistics, such as how many calls agents were handling and their duration. This, said Mr Sheehan, created a focus on statistics rather than on customers.
Banking 365 sought a new method of assessing agent performance based on customer care; new ways to improve agent training; and an approach that would reduce the time that managers and team leaders spent reviewing recorded calls.
The solution it selected was designed around Eyretel's MediaStore call recording system.

It incorporates Eyretel's Replay Studio -- analytical software that provides fast, accurate, graphical summaries of recorded calls so that significant calls can be further investigated or used to train agents; QualityCall -- a quality monitoring tool that improves the agent evaluation process through unbiased scoring; and ScreenCapture -- software that captures email and web contacts on agents' desktops enabling them to be reconstructed so managers can use live scenarios for training.
Using QualityCall, Banking 365 is now able to evaluate agent performance using "softer" metrics such as how quickly they react to customer requests and how quickly they create a rapport.
Team leaders carry out scoring, using electronic forms, as they listen to calls. At the end of each month, graphical reports are produced for each agent/team. It means that managers are able to compare team performance and team leaders to identify the best calls for training purposes.
Team leaders can now locate and score their team's calls quickly and without moving from their desks.
Mr Sheehan said: "In the past, team leaders spent two days each month away from their teams, searching for and reviewing calls. Now they are with the team 100 per cent of the time, and are much more productive.
"The customer care department can locate calls rapidly and even replay past calls to customers within hours or even minutes of receiving a query.
"QualityCall has given us a performance measurement tool that our agents believe in wholeheartedly. It's also improved agents' perception of how customers should be dealt with".
Mr Sheehan estimates that the Eyretel solution overall produces savings in the region of £200,000 each year. He said: "Eyretel is at the core of our customer service strategy. It means that agents can be rewarded for customer care rather than reaching statistical targets."

- Readers who use the enquiry number will receive a summary of key findings from the 2002 Call Centre Quality Management Study conducted by Mitial Research and sponsored by Eyretel.

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