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Performance Management

Performance Management

Beyond metrics to understanding the root cause of performance gaps.

Best practice call center organizations focus on creating front-line leaders capable of communicating performance objectives, identifying performance gaps, analyzing the root cause of performance failures, and developing coaching plans that elevate performance. Performance is not only reported but is driven at the individual through enterprise levels.

Our experience within this sector:

Performance Management Curriculum

Classroom Training and Mentoring

Tools and Tactics

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Performance Management

Leveraging training, process, & tools to deliver service.

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Classroom Training

A team of mentors works with trainees on a daily basis.

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Tools and Tactics

A toolkit for performance management training.

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Performance Management Experience:

  • For a major healthcare firm delivering lifestyle coaching and disease management, McIntosh conducted an operational assessment delivering recommendations to enhance the delivery of phone based member services while also improving financial performance. Based on a series of initiatives recommended and deployed, productivity within the call center unit improved by 90% and the ability to reach and effectively serve the member community almost doubled. Performance management was the primary enabling initiative with training and mentoring focused on front line managers and their ability to identify the root cause of performance gaps and develop highly effective coaching plans to close the gap. Additionally new hire training and quality monitoring processes for were redesigned and implemented with all initiatives exceeding ROI expectations.
  • For a major transportation firm, McIntosh customized the performance management curriculum and trained front-line managers at two locations. Classroom exercises and mentoring objectives reflected actual site performance and leveraged existing reporting to ensure that training was not conceptual but highly pragmatic. Combined site performance improved from the bottom quintile (16 total sites) to top network performance in average handle time (AHT) and second highest performance in first call resolution (FCR). Managers were trained and mentored over a ten-week period with all personnel hitting adoption targets by the end of the pilot. AHT reduction, repeat call reduction, and utilization improvements for the two sites resulted in savings of over $3M annually.
  • For a major metropolitan transit system’s customer information and consumer relations units, McIntosh conducted an operational assessment identifying key opportunities for cost reduction and service improvement.  McIntosh consultants addressed all aspects of the operation:  voice and data platforms, desktop and support technologies, management ratios, staffing and scheduling processes, escalation and exception handling, performance management processes, and human resource processes.

Based upon McIntosh’s recommendations, the client retained our firm to customize our existing performance management curriculum and to deliver a ten week performance management training and mentoring program for all site management.  McIntosh also conducted two quarterly sustainability audits to ensure continued adoption and sustained use of the new processes. The results were significant delivering an immediate return on the consulting investment.  Comparing performance pre-training to one month post-training , calls answered increased from 82% to 94% (15% improvement). The average speed of answer declined from one minute twenty-five seconds, to twenty seconds (68% improvement), and handle time for customer relations declined from a high of thirteen minutes forty seconds to nine minutes, thirty-three seconds (30% improvement).  Productivity as measured by productive hours divided by paid hours increased by 20%.

These results were achieved when front-line supervisors learned to focus on relevant metrics, identify the root cause of individual agent performance challenges and began to develop and manage effective performance improvement plans focused not on discipline but solely on upgrading the agent’s skills.

  • For a major telecommunications and broadband firm, McIntosh refined and implemented a performance management curriculum focused on improving front-line leadership’s planning, communications, analytic, and coaching skills. We customized the curriculum for multiple lines of business and delivered training to over 250 front-line supervisors and managers globally.
  • Results were outstanding as operational shrinkage was reduced by a factor of ten at most locations, call interaction times were reduced while customer satisfaction results improved, and agents as well as front-line supervisors reported deeper job satisfaction based on expanded communications and a sense of control over results. The McIntosh team developed tools to support improvement plan development and worked with the client organization to refine reporting accuracy and staffing processes.
  • The client reported that while results varied slightly site-to-site, that the ROI on the training program was less than six months on average with some sites seeing a full return on the consulting investment in four months.
  • For a major online banking firm, McIntosh developed and implemented a scorecard application designed to provide agents with insight not only on performance but also compensation impact. McIntosh worked with the client to define optimal metrics carefully balancing efficiency and effectiveness with agent metrics rolled up to the supervisory levels.
  • For clients across diverse industries, McIntosh has completed performance management projects ranging from metric design, to scorecard reporting, root cause analysis, and performance coaching. For multiple clients we have worked with their training organizations to ensure that management as well as agent level training contributed to a performance culture driving accountability.

Consulting Insight:

Metric Clutter

Call centers measure everything because they can and thus generate metric clutter. Performance reporting is excessive, unfocused, and does not present a clear snapshot of the organization or an individual’s performance status. Coaching is not enabled by excessive data; instead, it is disabled until we identify the data points that impact performance.

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