Call recording

Call recording is a valuable communications tool if your business takes lots of customer calls. With Dialpad, you can record business phone calls—while staying compliant. Sign up for the 14-day free trial with your Google or Office 365 account to try it out for yourself.

If you run a business that’s always on the phone or a contact center with a team of agents, you know how hard it is to keep an eye on everything. (Even an average-size contact center takes anywhere in the hundreds of customer calls every day, and many have to handle customer support, retention, sales, and more.)

So, how do you make sure that your business is actually benefiting from all these phone calls and using that information to improve your services, exceed customer expectations—and protect yourself in case complaints happen later?

How can you help your team improve while taking calls as efficiently—and effectively—as possible?

Well, with a good call recording solution in your setup.

How does a call recorder work?

The good news is, most phone systems and software today will have call recording built right into the platform.

(And not only that, they’ll integrate with your existing software, like customer relationship management tools, too.)

Because most of these phone systems and contact center tools are designed to work in the cloud, you pretty much don’t need clunky hardware like analog phones anymore.

(Some of these options, like Dialpad, even come built into your business phone system.)

Long story short, because cloud telecommunications work through VoIP (voice over internet protocol), all you really need is a call recording app. In most cases though, you should be able to record incoming and outbound calls right from either your phone or contact center system.

For example, Dialpad offers an automatic call recorder function as part of both its unified communications product and its contact center product. You or your admin can set up phone call recording (for either one-on-one or group conferencing) with a range of options.

And when you want to listen back to your calls, you can just go to your call history in the Dialpad app:

Dialpad also has a nifty automatic transcription function, which “types up” what’s being said on your calls—in real-time (more accurately than Google, we might add):

This makes it much easier for supervisors to scan a call for the areas of most interest—without having to sit through hours of audio until you find the part you’re looking for.

👉Dialpad tip: We use Dialpad’s Voice Intelligence (Vi) technology for call recording. Basically what that means is that Vi can not only transcribe your call in real time, it can also extract things like interesting questions and action items for you based on certain phrases or keywords that are spoken on the call.

Why record calls anyway?

Well, we can think of several reasons why a business might want to record calls. We’ll touch on some specifics in just a bit.

In general, it’s just a good thing to have for business transactions—including a consumer buying something from a business—to be recorded. Why? Because if there’s any dispute in the future, you’re already equipped with a record set in stone, which both parties can have access to, if they need it. No more “he said / she said / they said.” Hit that playback button, and voila, you have the truth!

As well as the legal angle, businesses can also use call recording features like analytics to get a clear view of how they’re doing on the phones. (Are they picking up calls quickly enough? Are they understaffed?)

Ultimately, customers can rest easy knowing that they’re far more likely to receive excellent service if there’s a record of every interaction they have with a company. (Hey, we’re all human.)

👉Dialpad tip: Call recording comes with its fair share of privacy and security concerns, of course—did you know that Dialpad's Recording and Voice Intelligence APIs can automatically pause recording and/or transcription when your agents are taking sensitive information? (For example, when they open up a particular screen or field to take down healthcare information—and restart recording/transcription once they close that window.)

The 6 big benefits of recording phone calls

Let’s look at some specific advantages of how recording calls can improve your business or contact center’s performance as a whole. (Many of these will touch on customer service-related benefits, since call recordings are especially important in this area.)

1. It helps you coach your team more efficiently

Traditionally, coaching techniques in businesses and call centers mainly involved managers listening to calls remotely and feedback sessions filled with scribbled notes. This is pretty ineffective, as it’s hard for someone to remember the precise details of every single call they’ve had on a given day.

But if you record phone calls, both the manager and agent can listen back to a call together, and go through feedback as the call happens. It’s a much more efficient way of highlighting strengths and weaknesses, while using the evidence that’s there for everyone to see.

One neat thing that Dialpad can do on live calls is transcribe them in real time. By doing this, it can then pick up positive and negative language, and use that to mark a live call as having positive or negative sentiment:

This way, a manager can easily see a full list of live calls their team is on, and where they might need to step in and help on a conversation. (Learn more about how this works in our Vi FAQs.)

Being able to review the data is one thing, but the key is of course to use it to improve your business or contact center’s performance and help your team resolve customer problems more quickly.

In Dialpad, for example, thanks to Vi, you can set up “Custom Moments” that are triggered by keyword phrases on calls—for example, when people want to cancel an account. Dialpad automatically picks up these instances and shows you how frequently certain topics are coming up:

With this data, you can improve your training so that your team can tackle these questions more efficiently, or suggest product or feature improvements to reduce the number of issues your customers have.

Call recording also comes in useful when it comes to onboarding new staff. Jumping into a call center queue can be pretty intimidating when you’ve never done it before. What better way to teach your new hires than with examples from some of your best call agents?

2. It helps you pinpoint problem areas as a business

Recording phone conversations is one of the simplest things you can do to identify positives and negatives within your business-customer relationships.

If you receive several complaints about the same thing in a short amount of time, it’s a sign that something needs changing within your pricing, product, or service offering.

(Likewise, if your team regularly hear praise for a particular product or feature, this info can be useful for putting together future marketing strategies.)

3. Better budgeting

For CTOs and other execs in the company who have a hold on the purse strings, budget questions are best answered with specific data gathered from call recordings.

And with tools like Dialpad, it’s not just voice-to-voice conversation that gets recorded, but also info like call time, length of queue, and call duration.

Why is this info so vital? Well, let’s look at its effect on budgeting for your call center. Let’s say your agents are at work and available on calls from 8 a.m. onward, but customers rarely call until 10 a.m.

That means you have two hours in which your agents are sitting there, twiddling their thumbs and messaging each other. But maybe you also notice that you’re really busy between 12 and 2pm. In this case, your center would definitely benefit from having more staff on call near lunchtime, with a reduced workforce later in the day. You could even move all of your outgoing calls to the quiet period to take advantage of your "fewer incoming calls" period.

If you ever need to allocate resources, or deal with budgeting, or want to save money, then call recording can be a secret weapon to have in your back pocket.

4. It helps with quality assurance

Preventing mistakes is something pretty much all contact center managers aspire to.

Having call recordings alone may not be able to fully eliminate every single mistake, but it can definitely help you and your employees learn from them more efficiently.

We’ve already touched on the value of being able to pick out pain points and problem areas, but the best call recording software takes things one step further: by providing analytics and call history in real-time.

For more robust quality assurance, look for a contact center platform that not only monitors call logs and timing data, but also automatically offers customer surveys and heat maps that show you things like call volumes:

Data on its own is just information. It’s also important for a good contact center tool to show you that information in an actionable way that empowers you to make changes when they’re needed and refine your processes to exceed customer expectations.

5. It helps with legal compliance

As we mentioned earlier, call recording can get a business out of a sticky situation—say, when it’s a customer’s word against an agent’s. For example, a customer calls to order a product. When that very same product arrives, they call again, stating it wasn’t what they ordered. Having a recording of the initial conversation can protect your team and prevent these incidents from happening.

Many industries are also subject to compliance laws and strict rules. Healthcare, insurance, finance, travel… Having call recordings isn’t just helpful for these types of companies—it’s often essential and can protect all parties involved.

To be fair, lawsuits are generally rare and it’s unlikely that you’re in danger of getting sued every day, but having that recorded evidence on hand is such a simple thing to do—why wouldn’t you have it?

6. It helps agents take accountability and ownership of their performance

Yes, the contact center manager should be responsible for performance.

But it shouldn’t just be on them. If you can make recorded calls available to anyone on your team, that empowers them to listen to or review calls on their own, learn from their (and each other’s) mistakes, and improve—without you having to hold their hand throughout the whole process.

If you’re managing a team of 10 or 20 agents, you can’t afford to personally coach every single person, every day. Call recordings can be a great stand-in, while helping you focus your efforts on the agents who really need your help.

How to record one-on-one calls and conference calls

Using Dialpad’s software, recording one-on-one calls and conference calls is as easy as texting—all you need to do is click a button:

Recording one-on-one calls

To record incoming calls, you or an admin needs to enable the call recording feature. Once that’s done, follow these steps:

1. When you’re on a call with a customer, just hit the Record button in your menu to start recording:

2. To stop recording, click the Record button again. (Alternatively, ending the call will also end the recording.)

3. Your call is then automatically converted into an MP3 audio file, and you can find these stored under your Recordings tab in Dialpad:

4. You’ll notice that each call is labeled by the caller’s name and the call’s duration.

5. You can play the recorded call by selecting it or download it to your Dropbox or Google Drive. (You’ll also have a backup copy on the cloud.)

6. You can put together a collection of calls (the best or the worst) into a playlist to train your team too:

Side-note: If you’re an admin, you can set up automatic call recording, which will save your agents time. But, if they need to transfer a call to someone else, that someone else (the transfer recipient) will need to record their section of the call manually.

👉Dialpad tip: You can also use call recording on iPhone or Android devices using the Dialpad app. When you’re on a call, you’ll see a Record button. Tap it to both start and stop recording.

Recording conference calls

In Dialpad, you can record conference calls in the same way: by hitting the Record button.

The audio file will be available in the conference summary once your meeting has ended, and everyone on the call will be able to access it.

You can also share the recording through a link—this can be helpful if people weren’t able to attend the meeting but need to review what was discussed.

Call recording: An unsung hero that helps improve contact center performance

You don’t hear a lot about it, but call recording is a tool that anyone who does business on the phone needs. (Especially if you work at a business with a contact center.)

From empowering you to allocate resources more efficiently to improving staff performance and analyzing customer pain points, the information you can get from call recordings is vital when it comes to keeping your customers happy.

Frequently asked questions

Do you have to pay more for call recording?

Nope! This is a standard business feature that’s available to all Dialpad plans at no extra charge.

Does this feature work across all my devices?

Yes, this feature can be used everywhere that you have access to the Dialpad interface.

How large are the MP3 files?

The size of the file depends on the length of the call, but MP3 files don’t take up a large amount of space.

How long do the files stay in my inbox?

Forever, unless you decide to delete them manually.

Can I send the recordings to other agents and operators?

Yes. Just download the file and attach it to an email.

Can I enable call recording across my company?

Yes. You can learn more about how to activate Call Recording company-wide here.