Customer Service Quality Assurance and Soft Skills: The Good, the Meh, and the Ugly

When companies begin to QA for agent soft skills, they’re overcome by a wealth of options. There are a million different levers they could pull to potentially create satisfied customers, and they don’t know which ones to prioritize.

Managers could easily list most of the factors that comprise high-quality customer service, but imagine that QA is just one of your many roles. You know that customers will be happy if they have an experience that involves high-quality rapport, personalization, authenticity, and a friendly tone. Yet running workshops on those skills so agents can deliver perfectly on all of them just isn’t feasible.

You need to know which agent behaviors matter the most to your customers, and emphasize/train on those to create the best possible experiences. We analyzed over 150,000 agent interactions to see which agent soft skills are most correlated with positive CSAT.

Soft skills breakdown through customer service quality assurance:

The chart below highlights the most common soft skills we found in QA rubrics - and measures the effect each one has one CSAT. Take a look 👇

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Read the full report to see other agent actions associated with improved CSAT

Authenticity and a friendly tone were the strongest drivers of high CSAT. Following closely were empathy and using the customer’s name. What was particularly interesting is that the soft skills that some managers stress the most had very little impact on Customer Satisfaction. When many managers QA, they focus especially on building rapport and increasing personalization. Our research showed that these factors have relatively little impact on CSAT.

On the other hand, failing in these actions has the opposite effect. Our data indicated that negative agent actions, such as using a negative tone or using the wrong name had a strong tie to negative CSAT.

Managers should focus on the good and the bad, and leave the meh for another day. To generate more satisfied customers, it’s more important to highlight the actions that their customers care about the most.

In QA and in life, it’s all about striking the right balance. Use this data to prioritize the most important actions for your agents, and leave out those that aren’t making your customers happy.

This whitepaper, “Improving Customer Satisfaction and Loyalty Through High-Quality Service” walks you through all of the agent actions with the greatest impact on CSAT.
 

Read the full report to see other agent actions associated with improved CSAT