By now you’re surely well aware of buzzwords like “big data” and “analytics,” but is your call center actually keeping up with the times in its business model?
Move beyond the buzzwords and learn how your business can harness its data and take actions that improve performance, drive efficiencies, manage costs, and unlock profits. In this comprehensive guide to call center reporting and analytics, we cover:
- What is call center reporting and how is it different from analytics?
- 3 best practices you need to reap the benefits of contact center reporting
- Essential KPIs to include in your customizable dashboard
- 6 outbound call center reports you can’t afford not to have
Are you ready to make the most of your data? Then this guide to reporting is for you.
What is Call Center Reporting?
Call center reporting is the process of gathering the raw data created by call center activities into simplified summaries. These summaries are what we know as reports. With the right reporting tools, a call center’s reports can offer summaries of performance within virtually any aspect of a call center’s business, whether it’s agent activity, list or lead performance, or a range of important KPIs.
In essence, call center reporting takes all the bustle of your call center and boils it down into an easy-to-understand snapshot of activity, typically in the form of a simple graph or chart. Of course, to make your business activities even easier to understand—-and, above all, to be able to take action based on those insights—you’ll want to rely on a contact center analytics solution with real-time and historical reporting.
Contact Center Reporting vs. Analytics
While contact center reporting and analytics are often used interchangeably, there’s actually a subtle difference between the two. And relying on a reporting tool that’s actually an analytics tool might make all the difference in taking your call center’s performance and efficiency to new heights.
So, what is the difference between contact center reporting and analytics?
Reporting is the first step in understanding, improving, and ultimately scaling your call center operation. A call center report provides an overview or summary of call center performance data. Managers can analyze those reports to understand what’s behind changes in performance. On the other hand, analytics does much of that analysis for call center teams, eliminating the need for managers to spend time making sense of the data.
Analytics gives call center managers and owners the essential tools to improve operational efficiencies and ROI while managing call center costs.
Call Center Reporting Benefits and Best Practices
To uncover these new efficiencies, reporting needs to be rolled out in the right way. Follow these steps and best practices to make the most out of your reporting and analytics technology.
1. Start with the Right Reporting Tools
Particularly for businesses in the outbound and lead generation space, call centers primarily rely on the reporting and analytics tools provided by their dialer software. Of course, it’s important to note that the differences in offerings can vary wildly from dialer to dialer.
For instance, “free” dialers like VICIdial may offer reporting capabilities, but these basic tools may end up costing call centers with their lack of insights. To evaluate reporting tools and find software that your business can rely on to drive transparency and growth at your call center, look for the following aspects.
Granularity and precision
While it’s one thing to show high-level, top-down metrics of call center activity, that’s only the minimum you should be asking for from your reporting tool provider. These days, the best in call center analytics tech can slice and dice your data, offering previously unheard of levels of granularity.
Speaking at Contact.io 2021 in Denver, Convoso CEO and Co-Founder Nima Hakimi said that outbound call centers need to be able to analyze performance precisely—right down to the individual list level. That’s because by analyzing data list by list, managers can improve lead management and see which sources are performing, turn individual sources on and off depending on how well they’re working, and maximize ROI.
Real-time and historical reporting
This sort of granularity only becomes more powerful when it’s combined with real-time call center reporting. Expert and industry veteran Heather Griffin told Convoso that missing out on real-time list management strategies is “one of the biggest mistakes that people can make.”
“What you need to do in list management,” she says, “is understand which list is converting [and when].” By first using list-level reporting to understand after what outreach attempt conversions drop off, then using real-time reporting to see the moment of the day that performance begins to wane, you can make much greater use of your costly leads.
Of course, in addition to this real-time reporting, you’ll still need to be able to rely on robust historical data. Not only will historical reporting help you benchmark your real-time metrics as they roll in, but it will also help data and dialing managers identify important trends over time.
Omnichannel reporting capabilities
In order to better reach their leads and customers, more and more call centers are relying on omnichannel solutions. But if your reporting tool doesn’t provide cross- and omnichannel reporting to match your outreach methods, then attribution can be a nightmare. And in the end, without being able to correctly attribute success to the right channel, your newfound successes will only be harder to replicate.
An array of automated reports
These omnichannel reports should come standard with your reporting tools, along with a wide array of automated reports that take the legwork out of understanding how your call center operation is performing. We’ll cover some of these must-have types of reports below, but regardless of which reports you use, it’s also important to have the ability to schedule the automatic sharing of reports. Rather than manually pull reports, use a dialer that can save time and increase efficiency by scheduling reports to be run and emailed to decision-makers automatically.
2. Enlist the Right Expertise
While stepping up to the right reporting software can make a world of difference, your reporting will still ultimately be only as good as the people you have using it and improving it. Unlock the full benefits of call center reporting and analytics by making sure you have:
A support team to match your dialer
At the end of the day, innovation is an ongoing process. However, if your current dialer doesn’t already offer a report or insight you need to improve performance, how sure are you that it will in the future?
If you can’t answer this question confidently, then you might not be getting the customer support you deserve. More importantly, you might not be getting the support you need to make the most of reporting data.
A dedicated data analyst
The potential of powerful call center reporting is clear. However, especially for larger contact centers, data analysis can easily be a full-time job. That’s why Thrive Marketing’s John Gallagher says you may need to support your data and reporting operation with a dedicated employee.
“Once you have that data, you can quickly pull out the information that tells you what changes you need to make,” he said. “You might need a full-time person, you might not. You could use a consultant who could grab that information, do a quick analysis, and guide you on a way to make changes. A full-time person is nice because you can look at it in real-time and say, ‘This is what’s going on.’”
3. Make Reporting and Analytics Insights Accessible
With the right tools and talent, it’s time to tailor your reporting to your operation’s particular goals. Call center reporting can help deliver improvements in agent performance. It can optimize lead costs. It can help you fine-tune dialing cadences, redial rates, and even your sales scripts.
However, it’s important to remember that reporting is only the beginning and not the be-all end-all of call center efficiency. That is, reporting is about improving awareness—the action that delivers results is up to you and your team. Supporting your reporting capabilities with effective communication to make insights widely available across your operation can help ensure that improvements to agent and lead efficiency are achieved—and that these reporting-driven successes are sustainable.
A Manager’s Best Friend: The Customizable Call Center Dashboard
Call center reporting and analytics aren’t just capable of supercharging agent and lead efficiency at modern call centers. They’re also capable of driving increased efficiency for call center managers.
Automated analytics capabilities save time by delivering insights without requiring extra work from managers. Plus, a customizable reporting dashboard can be tailored to make sure those need-to-know insights are always at their fingertips. After all, what good is real-time reporting if it takes managers too long to find that actionable data?
Are You Tracking These Call Center Metrics and KPIs?
Of course, the existence of the custom call center dashboard begs an important question: With so many options, what should you include in that dashboard?
6 Outbound Call Center Reports to Keep a Close Eye On
As we mentioned above, call center managers will want to choose a dialer that offers access to a variety of ready-made, automated reports that help them track important aspects of performance.
The following reports are essential to improving agent, lead, and manager efficiency in today’s call centers—and can help managers understand the underlying causes of their operations’ performance against those KPIs we outlined above.
1. Agent Performance Report
Understand who are your business’s top-performing agents and make informed decisions about coaching with a comprehensive view of agent performance. Use an Agent Performance Report to compare agents’ daily, historical, and list-by-list performance in metrics like Talk Time, Wait Time, Pause Time, Wrap-Up Time, and more.
2. Agent Campaign Report
Zoom into a view of agent productivity and performance at the campaign level with the Agent Campaign Report. Having ready access to this report can help your call center improve the way calls are routed. By ensuring that agents are more often routed to their best campaigns and lead sources, you can optimize performance and boost profitability.
3. Agent Revenue Report
In addition to understanding individual agents’ influence on the business’s CPA and ROI, the Agent Revenue Report offers managers a simple way to create leaderboards and incentivize increased performance with friendly competition.
Lead and List Reports
1. Contact Rate Report
Contact rate is a vital metric for any outbound call center. The Contact Rate Report can help managers understand the effectiveness of their outreach techniques, as well as adjust call cadences, dial rates, and more.
2. List Conversion Report
Last but certainly not least, the List Conversion Report is an automated report that every call center should have in their arsenal. This powerful report gives managers the real-time data they need to determine their true CPA and calculate ROI on a list-by-list basis.
3. Lead Penetration Report
Are you calling your leads enough? The Lead Penetration Report can easily help you find an answer. See if you’re dialing through your lists quickly enough and compare performance between lists to inform and adjust your outreach approach with ease.
Your Complex Contact Center, In Full View
The modern contact center is no simple operation. Developing a robust approach to call center reporting and analytics is all about shedding light on all that complexity. With the approach to reporting—and the reports themselves—covered in this guide, your call center can bring newfound visibility to all aspects of its business and find the efficiency required to scale a business in today’s competitive environment.
Learn more about how your contact center can do just that by partnering with Convoso. Discover how our leading contact center software and reporting solutions can help you unlock profits and growth by requesting a demo today.