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According to Ebrahim Dinat, sales and marketing director at Ocular Technologies, delivering relevant and timely performance measurements has been an ongoing challenge for contact centre managers. Analytics, he warns, is not enough and contact centres need tools that drive action, instead of just reporting on results.

Successful contact centres are constantly seeking ways to improve the quality of customer interactions without increasing costs.

A large part of that is looking at the effectiveness of customer contact and operation processes, as well as agent performance and how that is contributing to customer satisfaction.

This is according to , sales and marketing director at outsourced professional services provider, Ocular Technologies, who says that delivering relevant and timely performance measurements - across people and technologies - has been an ongoing challenge for contact centre managers.

"Performance management applications address this issue by allowing managers to continuously monitor, measure and improve contact centre business processes," he says. "And, by  providing scorecards and analysis that keep contact centre employees focused on the organisations key performance indicators (KPIs), performance management drives improvements across sales,collections, and customer service processes to help companies realise cross functional alignment with strategic goals."

Analytics, he warns, is not enough and contact centres need tools that drive action, instead of just reporting on results.

Advanced performance management applications enable a structured process through which a company can take steps to improve overall performance against key metrics. These applications can initiate and track actions automatically in response to an indication of a performance problem, thereby reducing reliance on supervisor and manager diligence. At the same time, executives can immediately see performance issues in their organisation and track their resolution.

"The benefits that a performance management solution can bring to the businesses are numerous," says Dinat. "By implementing a solution of this kind, supervisors will spend less time chasing data, and more time coaching. Agents are also able to see their own production stats, enabling self correction, and executives gain greater management control.

"Further, by automating reporting and operational tasks, contact centres can improve decision making and save significant management, IT and analyst time," he adds.

In a nutshell, performance management provides the greatest of business benefits, which Dinat says is a holistic view of the organisation that allows the contact centre to make changes to process and staff, on the fly, with full understanding of how that will impact the value and service it is bringing to its customers, creating a meaningful competitive differentiation.

Dinat says there are several factors contact centre administrators should consider when weighing their options where performance management solutions are concerned.

"These solutions should offer customisable views of KPIs and integrate with almost any data source, automatically, creating a single platform for reporting and taking action," he says. "Personalised dashboards for everyone in the operation through a thin-client interface would provide complete management reporting, alerting and task automation.

"Also, performance management tools that provide a unified view while giving users the ability to analyse root causes and take corrective actions is imperative."

Dinat maintains that performance management also helps create a performance-based culture in which each level of the organisation has access to the information they need to align contact centre performance with corporate objectives.

"When everyone across the enterprise is focused on achieving corporate objectives, the company can realise a significant competitive advantage," he concludes. "Over time, performance management trends will readily show whether or not the business is `moving the needle` on the metrics that truly

About Ocular:

Ocular Technologies offers professional consulting and implementation resources to support clients` service delivery programmes. Drawing on 30 years of collective experience in the ICT/contact centre industry, Ocular has made its mark at the forefront of the industry. The company remains the ideal outsourced professional services partner for large-scale corporates,SMMEs and government affiliates. Ocular Technologies is 100 percent black owned and complies with the South African Broad-Based Black Economic
Empowerment (B-BBEE) guidelines as a Level 1 Contributor with a procurement recognition level of 135%.

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