Saturday, 13 November 2010

Liverpool Direct - recording of calls

A few weeks ago, in the course of helping a constituent with an issue, I discovered that a particular call to Liverpool Direct Limited (LDL) had been replayed to check someone's tone of voice. The suggestion was that my constituent was not particularly upset by an incident and this was shown by her tone of voice on the phone. The incident I was looking into included allegations of abuse by a bailiff and sounded very shocking indeed.

The incident is being followed up and hopefully we can get it resolved in a way which helps my constituent and stops bailiffs acting like that again.

But this investigation got me wondering how many of the calls to LDL do get recorded and what is actually done with the recordings. I also wondered about what sort of permission someone needed to replay a particular call.

I made a Freedom of Information request to find out the answers to some of this and have pasted the replies below.

The questions were:
1.What proportion of incoming calls to LDL are recorded?
2. For how long are these recordings kept
3.How are they stored?
4.What criteria are used for deciding whether a recording can be played back and to whom?

In the case of e mail enquiries and subsequent replies

5.What proportion of these are saved?
6.For how long?
7.Total number of inbound calls to LDL in a year
8.Total number of inbound e mails to LDL in a year


89.5% of all calls are recorded
Calls are stored for a maximum of 12 months.
They are stored securely on servers via the business IT network.
Calls are recorded for training and quality purposes. The Quality Management part of the system selects a number of random calls each month for each Contact Centre Team Leader.
All emails are archived.
Emails are stored for 12 months.
LDL receives 1,960,33 calls in a year
LDL receives 100,149 emails in a year

Now obviously answer number 4 is incomplete or misleading. I very much doubt if my constituent's call happened to be randomly selected and played back at the exact moment the officer was looking into the issue when I raised it. There must be some other way by which council officers can ask for recorded calls to be identified and played back and I have sent in another FOI to pursue this.

My other reaction however was that I was surprised that quite so many calls are recorded. If I had been asked to guess, I would have put this at about one third of calls. After all the message you hear says that "calls may be recorded for training and quality purposes". With these figures it would actually be closer to accurate to say "your call will be recorded and may be reviewed for training and quality purposes or if we want to check up on you at some point in the next year".

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