Love it or Hate it: Quality Monitoring


Quality monitoring is the support discipline that systematically reviews cases, chats, or phone calls to drive personal and organizational improvements. It usually centers around a quality checklist that quality monitors use to rate the cases and interactions.

Love It

  • Quality monitoring is a great way to gauge customer satisfaction if customer satisfaction surveys would be awkward because of the nature of the work.
  • It’s a wonderful coaching opportunity, above and beyond any customer surveys. Customers can only report on what they see and hear; quality monitoring can delve into behind-the-scenes behavior such as proper use of resources, making appropriate exceptions, etc.
  • The best programs focus on the meat, not mechanics. Instead of superficial ratings such as “Use the customer’s name” or “End with ‘Have a good day!”, use “Create personal connection with customer” or “End on a warm note”. There may be a very good reason not to use a customer’s name (the rep is afraid to mispronounce it, for instance), and when customers are having deep problems they do not want to be told to have a good day.
  • Try buddy-monitoring for personal development. Encourage agents to review and rate each other’s cases. It’s a great way to distribute the monitoring workload and also to share best practices.

Hate It

  • It is not a replacement for actual customer surveys: even if the interaction seems fine to an internal eye/ear, the customer may not be happy. Do all you can to capture at least some direct customer feedback.
  • Agents often hate, hate quality monitoring (for good reason, because it’s usually done all wrong). So even if you are doing it “right”, you will have an adoption challenge.
  • Too often, quality monitoring is a separate program, run by someone else than the agents’ managers. Bad idea: have the managers provide the coaching. It’s not that much of a time sink: for a good agent, you only need to monitor a couple of cases a month.
  • It’s so negative! Many programs zero in on what was “missed”. No wonder agents hate them. Train the managers to always start with positive feedback.

Do you have a quality monitoring program? How is it working for you?


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