Customer Service Call Recording / by kevin murray


Who hasn't called customer service and listened to an automated recording which stated something like: "This call/session may be monitored and recorded for record-keeping, training and quality-assurance purposes.”  I suspect the first time I heard this message that I was appalled that some company had the desire to record our conversation, but after hearing this message time and time again, I've gotten use to it and also complacent with it.  For the most part, the burden and the pressure is on the call center employee since it's their job and their reputation that is on the line, but still, having a third party listen in on your conversation feels a little creepy or worse.


In my mind, I did have a quaint notion that my customer service call that was being monitored was just one of many calls that the customer service Manager was listening in on, in which that manager was jumping from phone call to phone call to which they might only pick up bits and pieces of our conversation.  I've since learned that this viewpoint isn't correct so when a customer service center tells you that your phone call is being monitored and recorded, they really do mean that it is definitely being recorded and that phone recording will definitely be listened to and ultimately analyzed.


The fact of the matter is that millions upon millions of phone calls are made to customer service departments of major businesses each year and those companies are undoubtedly interested in seeing that their customers are satisfied with their service, especially since the cost of replacing a customer far exceeds the cost of retaining said customer.     The customer service representative for all intents and purposes really does represent the company, so it is important that the service and professionalism being provided is consistent with the company's objectives.  Furthermore, handling customer calls is a special skill set, because customers come in all sorts of flavors, in all sorts of attitudes, from irate to outrage to upset to disappointment to resignation.


However, while there are service center which are strictly hands on with their monitoring and their concurrent actions to improve their customer service base, there are also customer service centers that record all their phone calls and place them into a massive database which uses algorithms to analyze and to sort through the conversations so as to ascertain what things can be done to help improve the customer satisfaction going forward or even possibly on that present phone call.  The analysis of these conversations by algorithms are often good enough to subdivide people into categories such as "emotions-driven" or "reactions-based" personalities based on how the words spoken are used, ordered, and utilized.  Additionally, algorithms have been written that can detect the stress and anxiety of a person's voice so that customer service representatives can adjust their responses given this valuable input. 


Present day customer service call recordings are primarily about providing an improved customer experience that is a "win-win" for consumers as well as for businesses.  The tools that businesses have to make this happen have never been more sophisticated than they are today, in which "a word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver." (Proverbs 25:11)