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Quality vs Quantity in Customer Support: Why IQS Should Be Your North Star

Customer service6 MIN READSep 20, 2021

Why IQS Should Be Your North Star

Tracking support metrics helps you improve processes, make better decisions, and identify trends. 

But if you want to take an effective data-driven approach to improve the quality of your customer service, you first need to track the right metrics. 

Most support teams track a ton of different metrics from First Response Time and CSAT to replies per hour, number of open cases, etc. 

But only a third of support teams track their Internal Quality Score.

And we’re here to tell you that you should be too! 

In this article, we’re going to break down why speed, quantity metrics, and CSAT alone just don’t cut it. And why you should focus on your IQS if you’re serious about improving the quality of your support. 

IQS north star metric

Customer feedback can be misleading 

Almost every aspect of your business is subject to internal quality assessment and review. Whether it’s code reviews for software engineers or quality assurance for physical production or audits for financial records, most teams are tracking the caliber of their work.

So why should your customer support be any different? 

Nobody knows your business as you do. And because of that fact, you should be the one to define what good customer support looks like.

customer feedback

Relying on customer reviews is a great way to gain insight into what your customers think. But defining your support quality solely through users’ opinions is a flawed process. This is because: 

  • Product and company feedback gets mistaken for support feedback. Support often takes the brunt of negative product-related feedback. And a lot of it may be completely irrelevant to the quality of support you provide. 
  • Customers don’t see the complex processes behind their inquiries. What may seem like a relatively simple support interaction might in reality hide a complex process behind the scenes.
  • Customer support at other businesses is often terrible, so you may want to hold your team to a higher standard than your customers do. 

📌 Takeaway: The best person to judge whether your support sucks or not is you

‘Sexy metrics’ don’t always translate to good support

kebab

In the previous section, we spoke about how user reviews like CSAT can be a misleading metric to judge the quality of your support

The same can be said about other speed and quantity metrics as well. 

For example, let’s say you’ve noticed your team has boosted your FRTs by 10% over the last quarter. Does that automatically mean your support quality has improved? 

Not necessarily. That might well be the case. But you may also find that these responses very rarely resolve the queries that your users have. 

So this means you can still have nice-looking metrics on your dashboard while your support efficiency actually drops.

In addition to tracking your speed and quantity metrics, you’ll want to actually go through support interactions and combine them with your IQS to gain a more reliable picture of how your support is performing.  

📌 Takeaway: If you measure speed and quantity metrics in isolation, you’re looking at only half the picture. 

Focusing on quality empowers you to build better relationships with customers

The main goal of customer service is to foster meaningful relationships with your customers

But there are many aspects of customers interactions that simply can’t be explained in facts and figures.

For example, take a look at this stat: 33% of customers abandoned a business relationship due to a lack of personalization.

Lack of personalization is a clear driver of churn. But there isn’t a readymade metric out there to help you identify this.

And once again, this is where reviewing conversations and assigning a quality score to them comes into play. 

On reviewing support interactions, you may find that your agents solely focus on giving short and to-the-point answers without putting any human touch into the conversations or offering any personalized solutions. 

Identifying this allows you to provide timely feedback that helps your agents address these issues. 

📌 Takeaway: Performing regular support QA is the best way to improve the quality of the intangible aspects of support interactions.

Quality metrics help you boost your other support metrics 

Most support metrics only give you an indication of how your support is performing, whereas a quality metric like IQS actually helps you boost your other support metrics. 

Let’s look at an example of this:

Dreem, a tech company devoted to helping people overcome sleep issues, ​​noticed they were consistently missing their 90% CSAT goal. They had started to receive reviews pointing to weaknesses in their customer support.

To combat this issue, they set up a customer care strategy that involved conversation reviews to improve CSAT scores

This helped them see that they needed to pay extra attention to agents’ onboarding and training while also fostering agents’ soft skills like empathy and personalization. 

The end result? Dreem’s CSAT improved from 80% to 90%.

Going through support interactions helps you identify parts of your system that need improvement and provide you a pathway to boost all your other support metrics. 

📌 Takeaway: The quality of the support very directly influences other support KPIs. So looking at quality is an obvious starting point to improve any of your other support metrics.

Combine your metrics with IQS for an accurate overview of support performance 

love-o-meter

There’s absolutely no question that you need to be tracking speed and quantity metrics as well as CSAT. 

But tracking them in isolation will not give you a true and complete picture of your support performance. 

Furthermore, it doesn’t provide you with a path to fix processes that’ll help you build better relationships with your customers

Which is exactly why we created a tool to help you understand the true relationship between CSAT, FRT, NPS, all your other support metrics, and quality. 

Want to learn more? Schedule a demo and see how Klaus can help you boost your efficiency metrics after just a month of usage.

Written by

Jay
Jayanth Padmakumar
Jay loves all things mindfulness, sports, and craft beer. Sometimes, he also writes.

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