Accelerating Accountability: Why Quality Matters
I recently caught Covid while traveling. My travel companions and I followed quarantine guidelines and modified our itineraries to return home after we isolated and recovered.
For those of you who aren’t aware, if you travel internationally and need to return to the US after testing positive for Covid, you are required to show a letter of recovery from a healthcare provider that clears you to fly back.
One of my companions and I share the same healthcare provider. We both received letters of recovery which we promptly submitted to our airline carrier for expedited Covid digital document review.
I’ve always been a fan of any type of automated service to help streamline these types of processes because they’re efficient and deliver great experiences. Customers save time and companies can save on-site cost by not having to ask their personnel to take on this burden.
This should have been easy, but instead, things got weird.
My companion was first to be approved and cleared to fly. So I figured that I should be good to go as well, until I checked my email and saw this:+
Considering how my companion was cleared off of his letter, I figured this must have been a mistake, so I resubmitted. Mistakes happen when we have human review and I know that it doesn’t hurt to resubmit as it will most likely be assigned to someone else.
And then it was rejected again but for a different reason:
This didn’t feel right. The airline carrier that we traveled with prides themselves about having a high level of customer service. I convinced myself that I was wrong and needed to provide more information.
So I resubmitted everything — my letter of recovery, my vaccination card, and my Covid test and again, rejected.
I knew I should be fine, so I kept resubmitting and as you can guess, I kept being told I didn’t meet the standards.
I thought I was going crazy and there wasn’t anyone for me to connect with to sort this out. More importantly, there was no one for me to share that there was clearly a training and quality discrepancy here.
It’d be one thing if the rejections were consistent, but each rejection gave a different reason. Something was off and clearly broken.
From my experience, in any type of operation, we love to focus on deliverables. Volume and speed are valuable key performance indicators, but they mean absolutely nothing without quality as an additional metric.
For example, this team reviewed 8 of my submissions, but the time and effort spent meant nothing because they were inconsistently wrong as they weren’t following policy guidelines.
To combat this, we spend a lot of resources to build ways for quality specialists to audit work for consistency. This is a very manual and expensive process because of the resources and time we need to review everything. It’s critical because in addition to getting validation of how well our teams are performing, we’re also able to find coachable moments to improve our customer interactions.
When we were designing Relay, it was imperative to me that we had a quality-based function because of this:
- I don’t want to keep asking my teams to Slack me for examples because there’s a high chance that they wouldn’t see my request.
- I don’t want to keep asking my teams to add more manual tags on our CRM because it’s easy to forget.
- I don’t want to invest time hovering over my team to keep asking if they’ve had a chance to review my updates and apply them because no one likes to be micromanaged.
These are outdated practices and do not work well in scale.
With Relay, all you need to do is set an action to collect an example from your team.
Your teams see it on their personal dashboard and they’ll be asked to share an example until the due date.
From here, you can quickly track frequency, performance, and quality without any hassle.
I love this function because examples are also important when we’re tracking software bugs and also looking for areas for process improvement.
I decided as one final attempt to see if my flight’s check-in agent would review my documents.
Within minutes, my agent reviewed the same documents that I submitted online, and then handed me ticket back home.
I knew it should have always been that easy, but I left the check-in counter perplexed because ultimately, this shouldn’t have been this difficult.
And then I realized that it’s just a reality of our times, as we now live in a state where information constantly changes without accountability.
That’s why I’m so happy to be back. Jet lagged, but happy to return working on Relay to ensure that we have this type of accountability in place.