Survey Results

This article details the results of the most recent QATC quarterly survey on critical quality assurance and training topics. More than 50 contact center professionals representing a wide variety of operations provided insight regarding the operation of their training and quality assurance teams.

Respondent Profile

The largest number of participants is from call center operations with more than 500 agents. However, the balance is widely dispersed across all ranges. This mix of respondents provides a broad spectrum of call center sizes. Financial, healthcare, insurance, and “other” have the largest representation but there are participants from a wide variety of industries.

Training Personnel

Respondents were asked how many training personnel work in their contact center. One-third have one or two trainers, almost one-quarter each (23%) have either three to five or more than 10. Only 7% indicated that there are no full-time trainers in their operation and these may be the smallest centers.

Quality Assurance Personnel

Respondents were asked how many quality assurance personnel work in their center. One-quarter each indicated they have either one to two or three to five QA personnel. Approximately one-fifth each have between six and 10 or over 10 staff in QA. Nine percent indicated that there are no full-time QA staff in their centers, and once again, these may be the smallest centers.

Dedicated Trainers and/or QA Personnel

Respondents were asked if the training and QA personnel are dedicated to the contact center. Over half (56%) indicated that both are dedicated while 14% indicated that neither are dedicated to the center operation. Slightly more reported just QA personnel dedicated (18%) than have only dedicated trainers (12%). As the needs of the contact center are often unique in both areas, having personnel who are dedicated to this operation is highly desirable.

Analysis for Trends

Survey participants were asked who analyzes quality scores for trends affecting multiple agents. Almost two-thirds responded that it is the QA department who does this while none responded that trainers do it. Almost one-quarter (23%) indicated that this is the role of the supervisory personnel on the floor and 4% indicated that nobody does this analysis. It is important to separate the need for an individual agent to be coached from a systemic issue that affects the performance of a group of agents which would be best addressed through training. It may be difficult for a floor supervisor to know if agents not on his/her team are having the same issues as their agents. The QA team is more likely to identify systemic issues affecting agents across the center.

Typical Next Step for Multiple Repeat Errors

Respondents were asked what the typical next step is when multiple repeat errors are identified. Nearly half indicated that training is alerted that a training class or program may be needed. More than one-third (37%) alert multiple supervisors to coach their personnel individually, while 18% indicated that some other step is taken. Where multiple agents are having similar issues, there may be a gap in the training programs that needs to be addressed so that the problem does not continue with each new training class.

QA Team Alerted When Training Completed

The respondents were asked if the training team alerts the QA staff when a class has been completed and what to look for in the analysis of the trainees. Almost half (46%) indicated that this communication happens frequently while 21% reported that it is rare. Another 24% only provide the alert to QA if the new training will require a change in the QA scoring form, but 9% indicated that this type of communication between training and QA never happens. Knowing what to look for in a group of recent trainees can help identify gaps in the training or confusion on the part of the agents that is more widespread than a single agent.

Meetings Between Training and QA

Respondents were asked if the training and QA departments meet to discuss common issues and solutions. Approximately one-third indicated that these meetings happen frequently. One-quarter each indicated that the meetings do happen but infrequently or only as needed. However, 16% indicated that such meetings never happen. These meetings are an excellent way to drive the best performance at the lowest cost when coaching is applied to individual challenge/rewards and larger gaps are addressed efficiently in a group setting.

Recommendations for Training and QA Team Cooperation

Respondents were asked what they would recommend to improve the cooperation between training and QA teams. The following are some of the more frequent responses:

  • We are often siloed from each other and only communicate when there’s an issue. It would be better if we had a closer relationship because things may be going on in the background that one team doesn’t realize the other needs to know.
  • We need better communication of how associates perform in class to know what to watch for when they hit the floor. We need to make sure communication goes both ways and Help Desk and evaluation data get back to the trainers.
  • We are looking to make our evaluation forms more complimentary to measure training impact.
  • We’re working currently to create a more dynamic information flow between QA and training, with a specific focus on New Hires. QA will monitor and follow new hires, as a cohort, for up to 6 months, providing performance data back into training. This is still in development and has not been implemented yet.


This survey provides insight into the training and quality assurance operations in the respondent centers. The number of staff in these functions varies widely, probably driven primarily by the size of the center. Communication between Training and QA can be a significant contributor to efficient operations as gaps in training can be addressed quickly where multiple agents may be affected. In addition, QA can be aware of things to look for when new trainees begin to handle customer contacts so that any individual gaps can be identified and coached quickly.