Many of our clients want to know how they compare with centers of like size, maturity, and industry. They’re often drawn to benchmarking resources and other studies and surveys. While interesting, the data that drives these reports do not necessarily reflect what the best centers do, nor do they focus on what’s possible. And even the perfect data would only be useful for a comparison at this moment in time. We want our clients to think beyond where they are today and focus on where they need to be… and how to get there.
The journey to “best in class” requires an understanding of what technology the market has to offer and how to apply it effectively. To succeed, our clients need to optimize both front line and support processes, and put the right organizational structures and roles and responsibilities in place to make those processes hum. They need to know not just what metrics others shoot for or achieve, but how to ensure balanced metrics and how to use them to drive continuous improvement and show the value a contact center delivers to the corporation. It takes a deep understanding of best practices to truly assess how a center is doing and to develop the path to move from the current state to the desired future state.
We developed a set of Efficiency and Effectiveness Evolution (E3) Spectrums®1 to address this need. The E3 Spectrums® consider a comprehensive view of how a center compares to what is possible, what is “best.” We look at all the major areas: strategy, operations and processes, organization (front line and support functions), technology, metrics, and facilities.
The following figure shows the E3 Spectrums® categories and ratings.
Each rating reflects an assessment of the current state against a set of specific criteria that define one of four levels of progress towards best practices. Here’s an example of how we score within one of the E3 Spectrums® categories (i.e., architecture):
We use this tool to help identify and prioritize initiatives. We work with the client to define the resources required and the investments that will pay off in helping their center move forward. Looking at the typical goals of improving service, driving revenue, or managing costs, we can also define the impact of the changes defined. Those changes can lead to positive outcomes for the company, the center, and the customer.
For more information, read my Contact Center Pipeline article entitled Is Benchmarking All There Is?.
1 Efficiency and Effectiveness Evolution Spectrums® is a registered trademark of Strategic Contact, Inc.