oa South African Journal of Information Management - Leveraging management information in improving call centre productivity : original research
Background: The availability and efficient use of management information is one of the key strategic levers in driving growth and competitiveness for companies. Management information facilitates vital decision making that assists organisations in improving their competitiveness. For call centre operations, competitiveness entails improving productivity and customer service, and management information is essential in this endeavour.
Objectives: This research explored the use of management information and its impact on two fundamental functions namely, improving productivity without compromising the quality of service, in the call centre of a well-known South African fashion retailer, Edcon. Following the implementation of the call centre technology project the research set out to determine how Edcon can transform their call centre to improve productivity and customer service through effective utilisation of their management information.
Method: Internal documents and reports were analysed to provide the basis of evaluation between the measures of productivity prior to and post the implementation of a technology project at Edcon's call centre. Semi-structured in-depth and group interviews were conducted to establish the importance and use of management information in improving productivity and customer service.
Results: The results indicated that the availability of management information has indeed contributed to improved efficiency at the Edcon call centre. Although literature claims that there is a correlation between a call centre technology upgrade and improvement inperformance, evident in the return on investment being realised within a year or two of implementation, it fell beyond the scope of this study to investigate the return on investment for Edcon's call centre.
Conclusion: Although Edcon has begun realising benefits in improved productivity in their call centre from their available management information, information will continue to play a crucial role in supporting management with informed decisions that will improve the call centre operations.
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