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Selective Audio Controls: Improving Call Agent Skills Through Voice API Features

This article was updated on July 6, 2021

Creating a great contact center experience comes down to agents. Crucial to any agent’s success is the training he receives, not just on day one but throughout his tenure. Training shouldn’t stop with the close of the onboarding process and brands that focus on continual improvement for their staffs realize improved NPS scores, brand loyalty, employee retention, upsales and more.

In practice, though continual training can be difficult to implement. Taking agents out of their daily routine takes them away from customers, reducing the overall size of agent pools, extending wait times that customers face, and potentially creating a dissatisfying customer experience.

The better way is to integrate the tools agents and managers need to conduct better training directly into their day-to-day experience. This reduces the need for dedicated training hours, helps prevent training gaps, and offers a chance for experiential learning, which for most is a far better means of learning and improving skills. With tools for training integrated directly into the call experience, managers and agents can continually work on how to improve the customer experience without having to sacrifice significant resources and man-hours.

With these efforts in mind, Nexmo has been adding features you can use to improve agents’ skills, delight customers, and provide the best brand experience.

Split and MultiTrack Recording

Being able to record calls is one thing, but having the power to quickly and easily access who said what during the conversation is what takes a standard recording tool and optimizes it for training. With Split Recording, you can retain a recording of what a customer hears as well as what the customer says. These recordings can then be used with a transcription service to not only retain the full contents of the conversation but also make them easily searchable for keywords or phrases.

The recorded transcripts allow brands to hone in on trends within their messaging, scripts or product positioning and identify what is working versus what needs improvement. Findings can then be folded into new training, existing scripts or ongoing modules.

Nexmo recently took this innovation a step further with the release of MultiTrack Recording. Just like with Split Recording, this feature allows you to separate your audio channels when recording a call. The difference is now you can expand the number of sources up to a market-leading 32 channels, enabling a number of new use cases including conferencing.

Real-Time Sentiment Analysis

Foremost in improving training is understanding the customer. Most often we think of this in terms of what the customer wants from a product perspective, but it’s also crucial to understand their experience throughout the call. Customers that enjoy their customer service experience are more likely to stay with the brand, make additional purchases, and recommend the brand to their friends.

To help facilitate a deeper understanding of the customer Nexmo enables sentiment analysis via WebSockets. With this feature, agents receive a visual representation of how satisfied or dissatisfied a customer is with the status of the call. Agents are in turn better equipped to provide a superior experience; they can adjust course when necessary or continue with the tenor and content of their given script if the customer appears to be happy.

By aggregating the sentiment analysis data for all the calls an agent handles in a given time frame, contact center managers can assess that agent’s overall performance and use the information as a guide for areas of improvement that can be addressed with targeted training. These findings can help to improve not only an individual agent’s performance but also can offer key data points for evaluating the overall effectiveness of a brand’s training models.

Selective Audio Controls (Beta)

Training is never an entirely self-service effort; managers, peers and mentors need to be involved. This can always be done post call but sometimes having that bit of support in real time can take a call that is heading in the wrong direction and turn it into one with a positive outcome. To elicit such outcomes Nexmo recently released Selective Audio Controls, allowing managers to sit in the background on calls and offer guidance to their agents without disrupting the flow of the conversation with the customer.

Much like a producer’s voice in the ear of a news anchor, the agent is able to hear all of his or her manager’s input, tips and assistance without the audience (or in this case, the customer) hearing a thing. The effect is a smooth call where the agent is able to deliver all of the information the customer needs and following the call the manager has the complete context of the conversation and can offer advice on how to improve.

Deployed together or individually these tools help brands improve their agent training and even more importantly the experience they deliver to their customers, engendering brand loyalty as well as employee retention.

Written by Vonage Staff

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