Contact Center Call Recording Guide

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    Table of Contents

      Contact center call recording allows you to monitor calls and agents, listen to recordings in real-time, search through calls, and improve quality assurance. A call recording solution can be a valuable tool that can be used for training, quality assurance and to reduce corporate liability risks.

      What Is Contact Center Call Recording?

      Call recording for call centers allows call centers to record audio during phone calls. These calls will be recorded between the customer and an agent.

      As a critical component of quality management, call recording allows managers and trainers to understand what is occurring when agents answer a call.

      Call recording can help call centers better understand how agents are doing with:

      • Cross-selling products
      • Providing accurate information
      • Following call flows
      • Building relationships with customers

      When used properly, call centers can use the information that they record to better understand what attracts buyers and what pushes them away. The information that is recorded also provides training opportunities and allows for a better understanding of what drives sales so that the same practices can be followed with promotions or new products.

      If used properly, there are numerous benefits to call recording.

      What are the Benefits of Call Recording for Contact Centers?

      Call centers can leverage recording to enhance the services they offer. A few of the many benefits call recording offers are:

      Agent Compliance

      Call center agents must always remain compliant with regulations. It's difficult to know if agents are compliant without some way of listening to what they are saying. Call recording allows you to store conversations between agents and customers, and automatic transcription makes those conversations searchable, accessible, and even printable if you need a physical record.

      Increase Customer Satisfaction

      Customers have called your contact center because they have a problem and need assistance. Customer satisfaction is paramount for any contact center, and it's difficult to know where a call went wrong without having a way of recording it.

      Agents can use call recording to catch instances where they may have lost points in customer satisfaction. For example, when customers are experiencing difficulty or issues with a product or service, agents must do their best to treat the matter with empathy. Reviewing the tapes via call recording can help agents better understand how their answers may be helping or frustrating the customer.

      Improve Training and Onboarding

      Past calls provide personalized training opportunities. These calls allow you to understand what your agents have said, and it also puts their calls into perspective for them.

      You can review one of these recorded calls as an entire training exercise where you could make interactive elements and even quizzes for agents so that they better understand what they do right, and what they do wrong.

      If you have a stellar agent, you can use their calls as an example when training a new agent.

      These calls will provide insight into what captivates the callers' attention, leads to the best customer service, and achieves optimal efficiency.

      Individualized employee feedback is a valuable training tool. When you're able to introduce personalized training, it can significantly increase customer satisfaction and, in turn, revenue.

      Enhance Efficiency

      Efficiency is perhaps the most critical part of a contact center. When you consider the impact on your bottom line and budget, the first thing that you want to look at is your operational efficiency. If you're able to increase the efficiency of your agents, you can:

      • Improve revenue
      • Improve customer experience

      Call recording bridges the gap between knowing what your agents do and what they don't do when a manager isn't hovering over them. You can't listen in on every call in real-time, but you can record calls for agents at random to better understand how they operate and where they can improve their efficiency.

      Even small, incremental efficiency changes can mean the difference between taking additional calls, happier customers, and improved profit margins.

      Call recording provides you the opportunity to enhance your efficiency.

      Bolster Quality Assurance and Control

      Quality assurance and control can mean the difference between success or failure. There are solutions for call recording that allow for real-time listening to an agent as they are on the phone.

      Managers or other higher-ups in the company can listen in on a conversation while it's going on and step in at just the right time if an agent needs help.

      Because the contact center will use multiple forms of contact, it is essential to have full control over these contact points and the complete record of what occurs during the interactions, regardless of whether an agent answers a message, an email, or a live call.

      Comprehensive Communication Records

      Communication records provide proof of what was said by the customer and to a customer. These records can be invaluable when there's a dispute. Perhaps the customer is arguing that the agent said that your company would extend the warranty for your product or service. Call recordings can help to verify the actual conversation that took place and reach a resolution faster. Moreover, you can be more confident of the outcome when you have the exact details at your fingertips.

      You can search through and refer to your recorded calls to find out if the agent made a promise to the customer and what steps you should take afterward.

      Perhaps the customer misunderstood what was said, and you can bring this to their attention. You may also opt to honor what the agent said, and this would add to the overall customer satisfaction.

      These comprehensive communication records can also help to limit your liability. You'll know what agents are saying on a call, and you can make sure that they are adhering to all company policies and regulations.

      You'll also be able to catch errors that agents make, including:

      • Entering the wrong information in the system about a client
      • Taking down the wrong payment information
      • Forgetting to add pertinent information to your database

      Call training can only be beneficial when managers fully understand what call recording offers and how to use it to their advantage to increase your company's overall efficiency.

      Contact centers can significantly benefit from call recording, but there are some things to consider before getting started with this process.

      Things to Consider When Recording Calls in a Contact Center

      Call recording offers many benefits, but one must consider these aspects when setting up a call recording program.

      Federal, State, and Foreign Laws

      Whether you’re a regional business or a multinational, your call center’s recording practices must comply with applicable laws.

      One of the first laws applicable to call centers is call recording notification and consent laws.

      • In the U.S., most states only require one party’s consent to record calls (that’s your employee), but 13 states require two-party approval (which means that all parties must consent to the recording, both employee and customer)
      • Outside the U.S., all-party consent is the general rule. Whether it’s Canada, the U.K., or elsewhere, you may find it safest to assume that all parties must consent to the recording.

      Consent laws can vary depending on the country and even local municipality, and these regulations and laws can change, so it’s essential to review your call recording policies regularly.

      Industry Regulations

      In addition to laws, industry regulations will also govern call recording practices. Some of these regulations include:

      PCI DSS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard)

      The PCI Security Standards Council, established by the payment card industry in 2006, created a set of rules that service providers and merchants must follow if they accept credit and debit card payments.

      If your company accepts credit and debit cards, you must comply with the security requirements outlined in the PCI DSS. If you fail to comply with these requirements, your company could lose its card acceptance privileges.

      Under PCI DSS, no businesses should store cardholder data unless necessary to meet your business needs. Sensitive authentication data, which includes personal identification numbers, card validation codes, and magnetic stripe data, may not be stored in digital, audio, or video format, even if encrypted.

      If your contact center is handling calls that may include this sensitive data, you will need a recording system that will mute, mask, or encrypt card and cardholder data. Other strict processes should also be in place to ensure that employees do not write down card data.

      HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act)

      Contact centers dealing with healthcare-related calls will need to ensure HIPAA compliance when it comes to recording calls. HIPAA sets standards for how medical data is handled, including how information is stored and shared.

      Any health-related information that is “individually identifiable” is protected under HIPAA’s Privacy Rule. For businesses dealing with patients and healthcare professionals, that means your call recording must be well thought out: Is the caller notified? Who has access to the recorded calls? Are transcripts kept? How long are they maintained? When are they deleted?

      How Recordings Will be Carried Out, Stored and Managed

      Along with laws and industry regulations, contact centers should also consider how the call recordings will be carried out, stored, and managed. Call management software can simplify this process, but there may be industry regulations that will dictate how to manage your call recordings.

      For example, access to specific recordings may be restricted if they contain sensitive or personal information. Unauthorized access could lead to violations and privacy concerns.

      Dialpad offers a simple way to record calls and manage your recordings. Recordings can be started and stopped with one click. All recordings are automatically added to your Dialpad inbox for easy management, and you have the option of enabling pre-recorded disclosures to alert callers of the call recording.

      Things to Know About Call Recording Disclosure

      When recording calls, disclosure may be required, depending on local laws. Regardless, letting customers know regarding call recording is often a good practice when considering your trust relationship with them.

      There are Multiple Ways to Provide Disclosure

      To ensure consent and to comply with call recording laws, contact centers have a few consent options.

      Employee Agreements

      Employee agreements are an effective way to get consent from contact center employees. When employees sign these agreements, they acknowledge that they understand company calls may be recorded as part of their job.

      Caller Notifications

      For inbound call recording, a simple announcement stating that the call may be monitored or recorded may be all that's necessary. Ideally, the notification should be given before the caller is connected to an agent.

      Beep Tones

      Beep tones are another familiar way for callers to understand that the call is on the record. These tones play at regular intervals during the conversation and are audible to both parties. Standard beep tones are:

      • Within 1260-1540 Hertz,
      • .17-.25 seconds long
      • Recur every 12-15 seconds while recording

      Always Notify Customers

      Even if the law only requires one-party consent, it is good practice to notify the customer that the call is being recorded or monitored.

      Customers should be made aware that their conversation with your call center is being recorded for the sake of maintaining trust and transparency.

      Use Compliant Disclosure Scripts

      Disclosure scripts ensure consistency when employees get recording consent from callers. The simplest way to get permission is to ask, and most callers are happy to agree as long as there's a valid reason. When using these scripts, employees can ask callers directly and explicitly whether they consent to the recording.

      Call recording provides many benefits to call centers, but laws and compliance must be considered. Having a simple, centralized call management solution can streamline the process of compliant disclosure. Dialpad makes it easy to ensure compliance and manage your call recordings every step of the way.