Manage Quality Customer Service sample essay

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Telstra Corporation Limited is a Public Company that is ranked number 9 out of the top 2000 companies in Australia stated on Ibis World a Business
reporting site (World, Ibis, 2011). The company generates the majority of its income from the Telecommunication Services in Australia industry. Telstra has employed 39,790 people by June, there end of Financial Year 2011. Since 2009 its current CEO, is David Thodey. (Telstra, 2011) The name “Telstra” is derived from the word Telecommunication Australia. The (TEL) is from Telecommunication and (STRA) from Australia. The creation of this name was trading under “Telecom Australia” domestically until a constant branding of “Telstra” was introduced throughout the entire organisation in 1995. (About Telstra Fast Facts,2011).

Business Operations

• Book and Telephone Directory Publishing in Australia Telecommunications and Other Electrical and Electronic Equipment Wholesaling in Australia Telecommunication Services in Australia Wired Telecommunications Carriers in Australia Mobile Telecommunications Carriers in Australia Internet Service Providers in Australia Online Information Services in Australia

Telstra’s Business Units

• Telstra Consumer including Country services the metropolitan, regional, rural and remote areas of Australia. It provides telecommunications products and services, for home and mobile phones and devices, to fixed and wireless internet as well as Pay TV services.
• Telstra Enterprise & Government (TE&G) is the leading provider of network solutions and services to Enterprise and Governments in Australia.
• Telstra Business is another division responsible for serving the needs of Australia’s small to medium enterprises (SME) with fixed phone line, mobile and broadband. Data and Internet solutions can be tailored for business.

Age of Customer
Age Group 55+ 35-44 25-34 45-54 8-24

2008/09 9.9% 30.6% 23.9% 25.7% 9.8% 2009/10 11.1% 30.5% 24.3% 25.9% 8.2% 2010/11 12.0% 29.9% 24.4% 26.3% 7.4%

Telstra provide products and services to Home and Family (residential), Businesses, Government and Wholesale customers. This also includes a Disability Equipment Program for people with a disability and Access for everyone packages for people on a low income. The chart found in a Telstra Sustainability Report (Davies, Paul; Migonneau, Bastein, 2011) shows the percentage of different aged group customers that have been connected with Telstra. Source: (Davies, Paul; Migonneau, Bastein, 2011)

Key performance indicators (KPIs) are ways to periodically assess the performances of organisations, business units, and their departments and employees. They measure the process through a SMART criterion by Specific – Measurable – Achievable – Relevant – Time. Monitoring KPI as a whole and through staff performance

The Call Centre Activity chart shows the percentage of customers that called and counts for each action that can occur once a call has been queued to a call centre. This is one form of measuring call centre KPI. People must learn to work together, ask for help, training etc. and understand how to relate to one another otherwise the team’s output will be less than it could be. This Call Centre chart generated a report that includes statistics relating to one call centers. The chart report provides information related to how calls are handled by call centers once they have been queued. Successful leaders care for and support colleagues and employees.

Treating people with respect, demonstrating integrity, and showing empathy strengthen the development of trust and confidence in the workplace. In order to make your teamwork on their set goals, performance and meet KPI you must demonstrate that you are reliable, honest, and trustworthy and that you walk your talk. They need to see your values in action and that you have their best interests at heart. They need to see that you value openness and honesty in offering and receiving feedback.

As technology has grown, so has the ease by which information can be generated and presented to management and stakeholders. Today, everyone seems concerned about information overload, From my thorough investigations online I can report that service targets are reported quarterly to identify opportunities for improvement and outline progress of achievement and adjustments if needed are also made at this point. The most informative reports I found online from 2010-2012 on Telstra are:

• Financial Results for Half Year ended 31 December 2011

• Telstra Corporation Limited and controlled entities and • Telstra Sustainability Report 2011 They all outline the results of Telstra’s performance, goals and statistics in achieving their customer service/product commitments. When organisations constantly review their service delivery, they gather an enormous amount of data. The data collected is important and crucial to the ongoing survival of the organisation and therefore it must be recorded, maintained and be accessible. The financial report “Financial Results for Half Year ended 31 December 2011” (Laird, Jason; McKechnie, Nicole, 2012) presented by David Thodey CEO & acting CFO Mark Hall has been published and reports that Telstra announced its strategy continues to deliver financial benefits.

Report Statistics & Targets for 2012

Business revenue results discussed by the Directors from Telstra’s “Financial report half year ended 31 December’ 2011” (Laird, Jason; McKechnie, Nicole ;, 2012) are as follows: • Total revenue increased by -1.1% or $136 million to $12,419 million • Net Profit After Tax increased by -22.9% or $274 million to $1,468 million In relation to the 2011 Sustainability Report (Davies, Paul; Migonneau, Bastein, 2011) Telstra believes that monitoring, measuring and reporting their progress helps them to improve on their service performance and lists this in figure 3. Figure 3 Telstra’s Values & Priorities For 2012 Source:(Davies, Paul; Migonneau, Bastein, 2011)


Telstra’s performance review process incorporates two informal quarterly reviews and a formal annual and half yearly review, targeting business results and leadership. Each team and section of Telstra has reward and recognition schemes in place to reward and encourage top performers. Telstra has a variety of incentive plans, tailored to different sectors of their workforce, which is designed to encourage high performance by rewarding employees for meeting and exceeding performance objectives. Another way of accessing performance is by collating data on customer’s feedback about the individual consultant. All results can be produced through a team email, meeting or coaching.

Obtaining a 360-degree feedback will be most valuable in assessing their strengths and weaknesses. The 360degree should be performed and completed by their manager and up to five of their peers with whom they work. This assessment will let the business and employer know what people they work with think about their attitude, performance, and business ethics.

Performance Appraisals Determines:
• Rewards and/or promotions for an individual who is meeting /exceeding performance • Identify and discuss gaps in skills, knowledge and attitudes that impact on an individual’s performance • Identify and discuss environmental or workplace weaknesses preventing the individual from meeting their goals and objectives and • Identifies an individual’s future training and development needs Most staff members will expect that they will be required to give feedback at the end of their appraisal. What is important is team members are made to feel that management will actually take notice of their feedback and use it to coach and make any improvements.

Live Performance Monitoring
I have provided a sample bar chart below from when I worked at Telstra. The chart displays how a team’s Adherence on calls is monitored by the sales teams. As you see the amount of calls answered is the first column which is then followed by the activities that one undertakes while on that call. The red highlighted boxes indicate improvement is required as the KPI target for AHT is 630min and Adherence is 88% while your wrap should be the lowest possible as this is when the call has ended and your phone is sitting in Not Ready status, the key here is finish what you are doing while customer is on the phone & be in READY status for the next call. This Report is also part of the scorecard paying system to calculate any sales bonus Figure 4 Activity Chart Sales Call Centre

KPI Targets AHT: 630
Adherence: 88%
Source:( Pusca, et al., 2012)

Figure 4 shown in this report is my own collection of statistical results I obtained when working at Telstra in 2011/2012. The results are solely only for the purpose of this assignment. Names of Staff members have intentionally been removed for privacy

The only measure that will connect a business with the relevance of the work a staff member is performing is to find out if customers are happy or not with their service. You need to measure how the customer judges the outcome of the product or service, through a phone or email survey at the end of
each business discussion. Telstra have this process in place. The process is completed by asking the customer to stay on the line while at the end of the call while you transfer them through to a questioner/ survey about your performance today. The rating is from 1 (lowest) & 5 (highest) then next they will be ask to provide any feedback. Statistics can be taken via the login of the consultant’s phone that produces a per cent % on how many customers were transferred to the questioner /survey.

Customer Survey Satisfaction Result
Telstra’s Customer Support Services is also launching an initiative to revisit the handling and processing of customer requests for prompt reliable services and assistance. For the past few years, Telstra have proactively been monitoring the “First Contact Resolution” (FCR) metric as a Key Performance Indicator (KPI) of 80%. This is a ‘voice of the customer’ driven strategy – reported in a Corporate Responsibility Report (Inc, 2012) we are doing a lot more listening. We are implementing tools and processes that allow us to clearly understand and fix main points for our customers states David Thodey CEO. As well as the phone interaction customers have with staff Telstra has established a new online panel – My Telstra Experience – so that customers can regularly tell them what they think of their experiences and where they need to improve on service. 2 Figure 5 Compliance MTD1F

Increase FCR Staff Must:
• Set the right expectation to the customer about the call (how long it takes to process the order, keep the customer in the loop) • Follow the correct hold procedure (set the expectation on how long they may need to wait) • To reduce repeat calls within 7 days by giving the right contact numbers to customers i.e. for any IT Support or Bigpond enquiries– please give out the correct number, that way in will not affect your FCR. • When transferring, give the customer the number for the department you are transferring them to. Encourage customers to call the number provided for future reference or in case, the call drops out. SOURCE : (Dave, 2012)

Remember to ask – Can you please stay on the line to answer 2 questions regarding my customer service today?

Within a call center, there are common business roles. There is Centre Managers for each department, Team Leaders, and Agents. • The Centre Manager will have a number of Team Leaders reporting to them. They will be responsible for the recruitment, development and coaching of those who directly report to them. The Team Leader’s role is to ensure individual agents are performing against targets, reviewing their performance and coaching/training them to do so.

The Team Leaders will meet on a regular basis with the Centre Manager to provide feedback and to receive instructions or actions that need to take place. The Team Leader is responsible for keeping their agents informed of what is happening in the centre and anything that may affect the agent’s key tasks or performance targets. It is good management practice to consult and reflect on employees and other managers for feedback on a regular basis. Feedback allows one to gain input from others including, praise, criticism and suggestions for improvement.

The Report
Providing Performance feedback to Management when their team has achieved KPI is an extraordinary accomplishment. Feedback is backed up with reports and they can include: • Documentation of expected results

• Standards of performance
• Progress toward achieving of results
• How well they were achieved
• Examples indicating achievement A report outlines the performance of team and individual staff members and how they have progressed since the last monthly/quarterly report. It will also show a comparison of whether they have improved or dropped in performance and if any training is required to fill gaps.

Figure 6 shown in this report is my own collection of statistical results I obtained when working at Telstra in 2011/2012. The results are solely only for the purpose of this assignment. The names of staff members have been removed for privacy

The following performance reporting covers the 2011 financial year for Telstra Corporation Limited (Thodey, David; Hall, Mark, 2011). In 2012, Telstra continue to focus on simplifying their business and improving their processes in order to better serve its customers.

Telstra’s Primary Goals:
• •Serve the needs of its customers Improving online services & support Make Telstra a great place to work Reduce Telstra’s TIO complaints Contribute resources – people, money, technology, products, and services To support the communities Strengthen the capability of the nation’s telecommunications infrastructure, and providing a strong foundation for economic growth, productivity improvement, and global competitive advantage. Service Goals

Figure 7

Gap Analysis
Actual Performance 2011
Target as of June 2012
Gap Analysis

Corrective Action

1. Customer Satisfaction 2. Improving online service 3. Telstra a great place to work 4. Reduce Telstra’s TIO complaints 5. To support the communities 6. Economic growth

Success 0.3% Failed 13% Failed 0% Failed 6% Failed 21% Success 0.7%

Listen to customers, undertake a cause analysis when issues arise, & fixing the areas that customers are not happy with i.e. pricing Improved online access for account enquiries on mobile phones & customers to easily manage their account online Launched a new reward & recognition program to recognise individuals & teams Conducted a review of system operations to ensure that privacy of customer information continues to be protected Provide communication technology training through grants, events, online content and DVDs They engage more with community organisations on issues impacting the lives of children and young people

22% 75% 24% 44,000 people $24.80 million

35% 76% 30% 80, 000 people $25,06 million
Source: (CSG, Customer Service Guarantee)

1. Telstra reached a 3% per cent improvement in customer satisfaction. Their approach is to be able to connect with the customer, understand and exceed their expectations, respond to and solve customer complaints and fulfil expectations 2. Improving online services and encouraging customers to go online will help reduce call centre call queue and visiting Telstra stores. This should have enhanced the customer experience. Telstra failed by 13% of online customer interaction with staff. 3. In 2012 Telstra’s goal was to Improved development performance by 1%, they failed 4. The Telecommunications industry Ombudsman (TIO) records complaint issues under several broad categories.

Telstra had set a target to reduce TIO complaints by 30% in 2012 though failed by 6% 5. In 2010/11, the total value of Telstra’s social investment was $248 million. Increased numbers of people to be trained to know how to use mobile, internet etc. was set from 44,000 to 62,447. Telstra failed by 21 % 6. A key driver to the increase has also been the focus on improving customer service through investments made to improve the customer experience including improvements to the online Telstra portal and the implementation of the after hours customer service line.


Telstra is Australia’s leading full service telecommunications and information services company. It offers a wide range of fixed and mobile telecommunications, and information products and services across Australia and overseas. Telstra uses its own network infrastructure. In addition, Telstra provides wholesale services to other telecommunications retailers, who then provide services, including voice, broadband and data services, to their own end user customers. Over the past year Telstra has recorded a turnaround in operational results, with strong customer growth. While not meeting majority of their targets, this year’s 2012 achievements must demonstrate real progress against their Service Goals.

Telstra still have significant improvements to make and have set targets to improve their Service. In recent years, customer satisfaction in Australian telecommunications has failed to keep up with community expectations and consumers have responded with increasing complaints to the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman (TIO).

Customer Service is an essential factor in maintaining an organisation’s competitive edge in the marketplace. Many organisations are placing greater emphasis on developing a customer service culture and making it a priority. At the end of the day it is the people in the center who are the real influence on customers not the technology or the processes. A company can have great products, great services, great technology and great processes, but it’s the people that bring it together and make it happen. To establish the right service quality standards is what Telstra need to bring into place. The following points list some standards I had not come across or not been mentioned by Telstra as one of their focuses for improvement •

•Top management commitment to providing service quality Set, communicate, and reinforce customer-oriented service standards Establish challenging and realistic service quality goals Train managers to be service quality leaders Be receptive to new ways to deliver service quality Standardise repetitive tasks

Telstra recorded a 3 per cent improvement in customer satisfaction in 2011/2012, with a reduction in TIO complaints however did not meet the target and failed by 6 per cent they had set out to achieve. To attract and retain customers a business needs to recognise different customers want different things, and they need to provide products, solutions and service to cater to this. To differentiate themselves from their competitors, a business will benefit if they can demonstrate that they can provide the understanding and experience customers are seeking. Overall, the company is a dominant player and for the last five fiscal (financial) years of 2007 to 2011, continued to make up around 60% of the whole Australian communications services market. The significantly improved growth in customers returning to Telstra is tribute to the value in the company’s new mobile plans as well as their network quality.

Telstra will continue to roll-out new products for all our customers, from individual to Corporate and Government customers, taking into consideration the feedback of what their customers have told them. They are committed to upholding the legislated Telecommunications Customer Service Guarantee Standard 2011 (“The CSG Standard”), as amended and issued by the Australian Communications and Media Authority (Thodey, David; Hall, Mark, 2011) The objective of the Customer Service Guarantee is to impose a minimum level of performance on telecommunications carriers and service providers, for specified services, so that the quality of that service should not deteriorate in any way but will improve significantly and should enable consumers to enjoy a reasonable level of service. (ACA, 1999)