The art of reporting: Achieving your dream call center dashboard

by Justin Hill on March 28, 2016

Reporting is one of the most pivotal components of a comprehensive call center management system. Business intelligence is, after all, the actionable data you need to make key management decisions, such as staffing and workload management.

You need the details of your call center system’s inner workings to be fast and easy to access, but also secure and available only to appropriate personnel. To accomplish this, your call center dashboard should include robust reporting options in a variety of application areas and each method of reporting should align with your business needs. For example, reports should clearly show who the top performers are and also help management uncover hidden areas of opportunity. Visual information should allow you to track progress and usage across a timeline in detailed increments.

In this post, we’ll cover the most critical elements to look for when implementing a call center dashboard or when considering a call center management software system.

Leonardo doesn’t have anything on a good dashboard

Leonardo da Vinci may have made the Mona Lisa smile, but a well-crafted dashboard that makes call center managers smile is a notable achievement as well.

There is an art to a good dashboard. It needs to present high-level information while offering the ability to drill down and see multiple levels of granular data. It needs to efficiently convey key call center metrics while not requiring a training course or cheat sheet to understand. It also needs to be visually appealing and well organized.

As a systems engineer, I often think one of the most challenging projects to create is a good dashboard; not because it’s technically difficult but because of the “design” aspects just mentioned. Call center ad-hoc reporting is vital, and a well-crafted dashboard can be the difference between reaching and exceeding your goals.

All canned items aren’t bad

“Canned” reports sometimes get a bad rap because there is a notion they aren’t flexible. While that can be true, a good reporting solution should allow for parameterized reports that offer a good blend of flexibility and ease of access.

You should expect a good call center dashboard to contain a repository of canned, or predefined generic reports. In your workflow, these can function as another set of tools for measuring call center performance. However, you should be sure they can be run on demand without affecting system performance. They should also have flexible output options such as HTML, Excel and PDF.

Timing is everything

Wouldn’t it be nice to continually keep track of your call center analytics without lifting a finger? A good call center reporting solution should proactively alert you to changes in performance of individuals or groups as a whole. Call center real-time reporting is what can keep your success level high as your competitors are floundering.

When implementing a dashboard, ensure that your call center software provides a combination of both emailed reports and event-driven system alerts. This ensures that you never miss a beat when it comes to tracking your data. Good business intelligence is made of several components, one of those being timely information in your hands when you need it.

Can I see something different?

Regardless of your current workflow, there will be times that you will need to see your data in different formats. Why? Because industry changes are inevitable and it’s impossible to predict right now how you will need to respond in the future. That’s why flexibility in your call center reporting solution is vital.

Whether you use in-house or external technical resources, a good data analysis and support team should be available to quickly provide you with one-off custom reports. Be sure you trust your software vendor and its support team, and can rely on them to respond quickly with custom reporting changes.

Besides, it’s your data. A robust call center solution should provide access to the raw data so that new or custom reports can be built quickly without weeks of waiting. Your data should be stored in a well-known and established database platform like Microsoft SQL Server so that these requests can be addressed with ease.