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Call Center Performance Metrics With Effective Ways To Improve

While phones have been a traditional medium for businesses to provide support to their customers, they still lead the customer support department in every organization.

Earlier with the help of landlines and now with the help of cloud telephony systems, businesses worldwide set up their own call centers or rely on Call Center Outsourcing services for customers’ call handling. In either case, to achieve customer satisfaction and grow business, it is very important to measure the efficiency and effectiveness of call centers and implement ways to improve its performance. That’s where comes the need for call center performance metrics i.e. key indicators to evaluate and improve call center performance and customer call handling. 

In this guide to “call center performance metrics with effective ways to improve,” you will learn about  following aspects of call center performance:

  • Call Center Key Performance Indicators or Metrics along with Agent Performance Metrics and Scorecard
  • Call Center Metrics Dashboard
  • Call Center Metrics Analytics and Reporting    

With further ado, let’s dive in!

Call Center Key Performance Metrics

Customer Satisfaction

While customer satisfaction is a qualitative metric, it is the prime indicator to measure the performance of your call center and that of your customer care agents. After all, the main motive of the call centre is to resolve the customer queries, help them complete transactions with your business, and ensure that they leave the call with resolution to their issues, a sense of care and satisfaction with your support services.

Customers are the prime factor for the existence, survival, as well as growth of your business. Therefore, customer satisfaction is paramount to keep business thriving. 

How To Measure Customer Satisfaction Metric?

In a broader sense, customer satisfaction is not a quantitative aspect. However, there are ways to measure it. In the context of a call center, a simple customer feedback message can get this job done. 

After every call, you can drop a message to the callers asking for their satisfaction level on a scale of 1-10 or 1-5 with just a tap. It will make sure that your customers don’t have to go through a long feedback form and you will get instant feedback. 

Aggregating all the feedback received from the customers in a certain time frame, you can get a very clear picture of the level of customer satisfaction with your current call center.

How To Improve Customer Satisfaction Metric?

Forrester’s CX Index found that 72% of companies say improving customer experience is a priority but less than 1% of organizations deliver an excellent experience to their customers. 

Further as per 2015 report by Accenture, 80% of customers who switched companies due to poor customer service feel the company could have done something to retain them. 

Get Feedback from Customers

If the customer satisfaction level is below the target, you can run a survey, asking your customers to provide feedback on how you can improve your call center. While not all customers will respond, feedback from even a few of them can help point out the major flaws in your call center. 

Of course, the next step will be to culminate those insights in actionable format and improve your call handling process to incorporate the necessary changes.

Offer First Contact Resolution (FCR)

Companies with high First Contact Resolution rates typically have high customer satisfaction. A report on First Call Resolution prepared by Service Quality Measurement Group (SQM Group)  revealed that for every one  percent increase in FCR, a company gets a one percent improvement in customer satisfaction!

82% of consumers say the number one factor that leads to a great customer service experience is having their issues resolved quickly. (Source: ICMI)

“Speaking to a representative in person or over the phone evoked the greatest amount of positive sentiment for customers.”

– Forrester U.S. Banking Customer Experience Index 2018 Report

In this article we will talk about the points which make the implementation of an call centre solution  worth its price in order to accelerate the process of call handling and customer query resolution for the businesses having calls as an important mode of customer communication.

The basic benefits of call centre solution is that it acts as a catalyst to the customer satisfaction, provided it is well implemented. In this blog on benefits of call center solution, we will cover the pitfalls of call handling and how they can be handled by call center solution.

Main motive of this post is to discuss in brief the Benefits of call center solution, like:

  1. Reduction in Abandonment Rate 
  2. Improved First-Call Resolution
  3. Augmentation of customer experience
  4. CSAT (Customer Satisfaction)

Besides this, This article will also discuss the points where call center solutions might fail and what are the steps to plug those problems. 

So, without further ado, let’s discuss the benefits of call center solution: 

Reduction in Abandonment Rate 

Abandonment Rate can be defined as the ratio of the number of calls abandoned (disconnected by the customer) to the number of calls received. It can be further explained in a simpler manner as the number of calls that are ditched by a caller due to various reasons such as the delay in call connection with live agent , feeling non-prioritised by the call centre.

Reduce the rate of callers leaving the call before the resolution of their query : there is nothing like a good number for RAR (reduction in abandonment rate )  but the lesser the better.

General conditions that are taken into account :

  1. Call should be over 5 sec at least .
  2. Call made by or to (inbound or outbound ) should have the customer to be passing the basic  menu in order to be talking to the customer 

Below are few pitfalls for call abandonment 

  • Service Proficiency: Ability to help the caller with available resources and knowledge in best possible way depicts the service proficiency . Higher the proficiency higher is the customer satisfaction. 
  • After Call Work : Work required after a call has to  be cut down , i.e filling up the details of the call , for example the feedback from the agent about the query, its effectiveness of resolution etc . The time it takes up hampers the call handling capacity thus affecting the call abandonment rate.
  • Forecasting Volume : Necessary calculation of forecasting the incoming call volume due the peaks of timing , seasonality and event related. The forecast accuracy needs to be high so that the extra agents could be brought in for the peak hours /days of the call centre . Thus , handling all the calls effectively being in the safe zone of cost of handling extra calls with offshore or ad hoc agents.
  • Time to answer : Time required to answer the query / completing the transaction over the call affects the overall call closure effectiveness of the call centre . For example : a call is received by the call centre and the agent takes up the call within adequate time ( approx 30- 35sec ) and helps the customer to solve their query / transaction with no obstacles. 

Here , we need to focus on the time the agent took to answer the call and completely resolve it with full satisfaction of the customer . If this metric is reduced with the help of the right knowledge base provided to agents and inter-department basic overview so that the basic queries can be solved by a single agent from start to end without any to and fro transferring.

  • Vacant Seats : Unfilled seats are not a good sign for the incoming calls of the customers. Agents should strictly follow the schedule  to their seats in peak timing and are necessary for proper timely functioning of the call center .
  • Call Duration : Longer it takes to complete the call , the more inefficient the call is until and unless it is over a specialized complex  task . Mostly all the calls are resolved in a straightforward, undeviating & swift manner . For effective working of the system we have to streamline this process. 

Probable reasons : 

  • Too long call waiting time :
  • Too many or too less  options :IVR menu
  • Feeling not getting enough attention: Wait → Will be connected → Very high hold time → Customer may abandon call  

Suggestions To Counter : 

  • Call Them Back : Call back serves as the sigh of relief as well as a responsibility well performed towards the customers , call back let’s the customer have a more trust towards the organisation resulting in better word of mouth .
  • Ad Hoc Agents : When estimated call volume forecast crosses a certain benchmark then it becomes a necessity to bring in ad-hoc agents or some offshore agents to handle these calls for effective time bound query resolution with better customer satisfaction
  • Add frequently used options : If analysed properly then we can easily get to know the options which are frequently visited and  completely solve these queries with customer satisfaction . Then , these options connected with these answering recordings.
  • Spillage Options : Create  an option where the calls that cannot be handled by the department gets forwarded to the voicemail , message receipt , other than just on hold we should arrange a callback.

Improved First Call Resolution : 

Explanation -:

  1. Create a common knowledge base : 
  2. Empower your support agents/reps :
  3. Route tickets to the right teams quickly : 
  4. Total contact ownership :
  • Create a common knowledge base :Creating a common knowledge base is the first significant step towards improving first call resolution . This common knowledge base would be included with basic frequently asked queries of all departments and for the more specific queries it will be distributed among specialized departments. In order to enhance the total contact ownership among the call center agents.
  • Empower your support agents/reps : Providing the reps with right training and resources to complete their calls effectively . Train your agents to use their skills and applied knowledge in the best possible manner and answer the queries completely in a customer centric approach.
  • Route tickets to the right teams quickly : If the sales team gets the technical support queries and vice versa , then it’s not a pleasant experience for either of them (caller and the agent) . So , in order to avoid these scenarios  practicing orderly call routing is suggested . It decreases the total call time and accelerates the caller resolution with better satisfaction than the otherwise poor call routing . 
  • Total contact ownership : This is done by laying out the framework such that the call attended by the agent is completely his responsibility from start to finish.

For Example :-

  • Prevent customers from calling in the first place: Improve knowledge base on website/ any medium/ orientation/ customer onboarding/ guide/ infographic 

Research by Harvard Business Review shows that 57% of calls come from customers who have already been to a company’s website looking for answers

  • Get the agent’s right resources: Right resources would help in quick resolutions , that is as an agent one should have the right tools for handling the calls and queries.

Augmentation of customer experience

According to the ‘2017 Gartner Customer Experience in Marketing’ survey, more than two-thirds of marketers say their companies compete mostly on the basis of CX, and in two years’ time, 81% expect that they will compete entirely on the basis of CX.

Explanation -:

  1. Ressaure your customers
  2. Don’t waste customer time 
  3. Forget our menu has changed
  4. Natural Language Usage
  5. Minimalistic Design
  6. Caller Experience 
  • Reassurance your customers : Here , if the customer is provided with the reassurance that their query or transaction is being processed or dealt with then it instills a bit of confidence for the customer. They felt being prioritised and their concern /query is getting solved/work in progress.
  • Don’t waste customer time : Please don’t bring up the marketing messages when the customer is connected at the 1st level , these messages can be played while the caller is on queue but not initially . 
  • Forget our menu has changed : Pop Ups regarding the  menu modification is not at all a good sign of customer service as these are not much relevant , there is no need to remind them of menu change because most probably they won’t remember the options until and unless they are frequently visiting customers.
  • Natural Language : Natural human-like language should be used in the menu so that the customer feels more comfortable to understand the options and doesn’t get a feeling of a robotic voice at the other end . 
  • Minimalistic Instructions : Try to make the instructions laid out in a minimal manner , i.e. they should be to the point and the customer should not be worried about the many options to select from but gets easily to the desired option  or gets connected to the agent easily .
  • Caller Experience : First & foremost purpose of the call is that the customer query or transaction is to be completed with utmost care and complete satisfaction.

For Example : 

Reports (With Quotes/Stats) : 

37% of consumers who ended a business relationship did so because they were frustrated with the call interaction. (Source: 24/7, 2016)

Conclusion : 

Finally , coming to the end of this blog we can conclude the major points that we have covered . 

That is every aspect of a call centre has a large scope of optimization and if done properly then the usability , customer experience , effectiveness RoI etc gets enhanced . Thus , leveraging the business communication and getting the heavy lifting done by your smart cloud call centre system .

Hope this blog offers some take away’s for improving the call performance metrics .

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