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John Myers

Hey all-

Welcome to my blog. The fine folks at the BeyeNETWORK™ have provided me with this forum to offer opinion and insight into the worlds of telcommunications (telecom) and business activity monitoring (BAM). But as with any blog, I am sure that we (yes we... since blogging is a "team sport"...) will explore other tangents that intersect the concepts of telecom and BAM.

In this world of "Crossfire" intellectual engagement (i.e. I yell louder therefore I win the argument), I will try to offer my opinion in a constructive manner. If I truly dislike a concept, I will do my best to offer an alternative as opposed to simply attempting to prove my point by disproving someone else's. I ask that people who post to this blog follow in my lead.

Let the games begin....

About the author >

John Myers, a senior analyst in the business intelligence (BI) practice at  Enterprise Management Associates (EMA). In this role, John delivers comprehensive coverage of the business intelligence and data warehouse industry with a focus on database management, data integration, data visualization, and process management solutions. Prior to joining EMA, John spent over ten years working with business analytics implementations associated with the telecommunications industry.

John may be contacted by email at JMyers@enterprisemanagement.com.

Editor's note: More telecom articles, resources, news and events are available in the BeyeNETWORK's Telecom Channel. Be sure to visit today!

Recently in Customer Care Category

First Call Resolution (FCR) is a key measure for call center operations.  It is one of the important aspects of customer experience management - call centers should be able to resolve an issue in a single call.

In the effort to continue to "resolve" all issues in the first call to the call center, Ronald Hildebrandt has a great look at how to look at the potential errors from agents that extend beyond that key first call.

Now having experienced a recent middling to poor customer care experience, I can honestly say that I am not so interested in a "first call resolution", but rather a "real resolution to my call".  Yes, I would love it if my issue could be resolved in a single call.  However, I would appreciate it more if a customer care rep would follow the advice of #10 on Hildebrandt's list:

10. Only answered the question asked, but did not anticipate the real customer issue In the healthcare world, quoting insurance benefits is one of the most complex, confusing and time-consuming activities that can take place in the call center. There are many different benefits that can be asked about and quoted. The flaw we often find in those call centers (and non-healthcare call centers, too) is that the agent only answers the question that the customer asked but doesn't anticipate the full impact of the original question.

For my telecom customer care experience, I KNEW, with a certainty, that I understood my problem better than the young man on the other end of the phone, but at no point did the rep attempt to say "Can I go research this issue and call you back?".... No.  He just continued to follow the script and attempt figure out my issue via process of elimination.  Not a great strategy....

Do you think that it is appropriate for customer care reps to "declare ignorance" and attempt to find another resolution? Or do you think that a 75 call minute call should extend into a 150 minute call while all avenues are exhausted for "first call resolution"?

Post your comments below or email (John.Myers@BlueBuffaloGroup.com) / twitter (JohnLMyers44) me directly.

NOTE - You would be surprised at how much of you taxes you can complete while on a 75 minute customer care call? ;)

 


Posted March 27, 2009 8:00 AM
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There are certain telecom organizations that continue to understand customer care and customer relations… and those that don’t…

Mila D'Antonio has an interesting contrast between two well known North American telecom organizations in a recent look at using Web 2.0/Web 1.0 technologies for customer care issues.

In my opinion, the use of Twitter by Comcast shows a great use of Web 2.0 technology! More telecoms should engage in this interaction.  The problem is that often it takes more effort than most telecoms want to put into either customer care or customer experience…


Posted March 16, 2009 8:00 AM
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Moving beyond being a “dumb pipe” means that telecommunications service providers need to provide “edge devices” to manage the end of the pipe and provide that all important value-add. 

However according to a recent study from John Horrigan and Sydney Jones that those devices are some of the most ‘failure prone’ or perceived to be error prone technologies in people’s lives.

FailingTechnology

This information has a ‘dark cloud’ in that a majority of these technologies are ones that people associate with telecommunication service providers.  However, the ‘silver lining’ is that this type of study shows two things.

  1. The “edge devices” are some of the most important technologies in people’s lives.  If they weren’t, they probably wouldn’t be listed in the study.
  2. Telecommunication service providers need to support those “edge devices” in a value-add fashion or they risk giving customers that reason to churn.

Forward looking organizations will embrace this challenge and offer customer service to match the value of the customer.  Those that don’t … well… :)


Posted February 2, 2009 8:00 AM
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Being able to respond in a timely fashion to customers requirements in a timely fashion is a key to many telecommunications CRM implementations and by association telecom call centers.  However, a recent study shows that many call centers are using qualitative metrics rather than quantitative metrics to measure call center performance.

While I believe that no organization should use only one or the other, one of the best ways to determine in ‘real-time’ ( near real-time for those of us who actually have to implement this stuff…. ) the performance of your call center is to use quantitative, operational metrics to determine operational performance.  Qualitative metrics, like customer surveys and feedback, take too long to determine if there is an issue that can be corrected.

It should be noted that quantitative metrics NEED to be backed up with quantitative metrics.  The quantitative metrics are only good to tell you how fast you are going.  Qualitative tell you where you going.  Remember the immortal words of Yogi Berra:

“We're lost, but we're making good time.”

It would be unfortunate to run a call center only based on “making good time”.


Posted December 31, 2008 8:00 AM
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So I am in fact continuing a rumor that I found while on vacation this week…. iPhone at Walmart for $99.

WalmartIPhone

I can’t believe that AT&T who is probably still smarting from the roll-out of iPhone outside of their IT infrastructure at the Apple Stores is willing to allow iPhone to be sold at Walmart… presumably with the same requirement that the phone be activated before you leave the store…

This strategy appears to be heading in the opposite direction as other carriers who want less customer activation issues than more…

In my humble opinion, ATT will deal with many more headaches from customers and “implementation” partners than they will from “quality” customers from the distribution point.


Posted December 9, 2008 8:00 AM
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