QA Methodology Pitfalls: Double-Barreled Elements

One way QA teams often try to make their scoring tool more "simple" is to lump multiple behavioral elements into one line
item in the scale, such as:

Be courteous; use the customer’s name

These "double-barreled" elements create a natural analytical dilemma. If the CSR was courteous, saying “please” and “thank
” but didn’t use the customer’s name, do you “ding” them? Doing so will usually raise a fire-storm of protest from the CSR who will argue that it’s not fair to penalize them for not using the name when they did, in fact, use courtesy.

Usually, the next time the situation arises, the call coach will decide that "dinging" the CSR for not using the name isn’t worth the argument. So, the coach will give the CSR credit for the element and “coach them" on using the customer’s name.

Them problem then arises that you
really aren’t holding the CSR accountable for the behavior of using the customer’s name. CSRs will quickly (and
correctly) surmise that as long as they use courtesy words they don’t have to modify their
behavior to use the customer’s name, knowing they will never get “dinged” for it.

Maybe it’s time to give your QA scale another look. Any double-barreled elements in there?

Related Posts:
Common QA Pitfalls: Scoring Differences
Common QA Pitfalls: Poorly Defined Goals
This Shortcut Won’t Save You Time

Flickr photo courtesy of ob1left

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