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Which call center metrics are truly essential to concentrate on?

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Article Summary:There are many different metrics that call centers track to measure performance. However, not all metrics are equally important, and focusing too much on the wrong ones can lead to unintended consequences. The key is to focus on metrics that drive the most important outcomes for both the customer experience and the business.

There are many different metrics that call centers track to measure performance. However, not all metrics are equally important, and focusing too much on the wrong ones can lead to unintended consequences. The key is to focus on metrics that drive the most important outcomes for both the customer experience and the business.

Call handle time

One metric that is often overemphasized is call handle time. While keeping calls short is important for efficiency, focusing solely on speed can negatively impact the customer. Agents may feel pressure to rush through calls or provide incomplete solutions just to meet handle time targets. This damages the quality of service and leaves customers dissatisfied. A better approach is to track average handle time but also consider other factors like first call resolution rates and customer satisfaction scores. As long as those other metrics remain high, some variation in handle times is acceptable.

First call resolution

First call resolution is actually a far more important metric to focus on. This measures the percentage of customer issues that are fully resolved within the initial call. Customers dislike having to call back for follow ups or escalations. High first call resolution ensures the best possible customer experience by solving problems in a single interaction. It should be the top priority metric that all other metrics support. For example, agents can take a bit longer on calls if it means more calls are resolved at once without a return phone call.

Customer satisfaction scores

Customer satisfaction scores provide valuable insight into how well the call center is meeting customer needs from their perspective. Regular surveys can track metrics like how likely customers are to recommend the business to others. This captures the overall quality of the service rather than just focusing on speed or issue resolution. Satisfied, loyal customers are critical for business success. Call centers need to prioritize keeping satisfaction high even if it means sacrificing other metrics occasionally.

Agent satisfaction and retention rates

Agent satisfaction and retention rates should not be overlooked either. Unhappy, overworked agents will struggle to provide great customer service and are more likely to quit. Turnover is costly to recruit and train replacements. Call centers must find the right work-life balance for agents and make the job rewarding. Monitoring metrics like average call volume per agent, overtime hours, and voluntary turnover can help ensure a positive work environment. Satisfied agents are more productive and better able to satisfy customers.

The most important call center metrics, in summary, are first call resolution, customer satisfaction, and agent satisfaction/retention. These directly impact the customer experience and long-term business outcomes. Average handle time and other efficiency metrics have their place but should not take priority at the expense of quality or the well-being of customers and employees. A balanced, multi-dimensional approach to metrics is needed to build a sustainable high-performing call center operation.

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The article is original by Udesk, and when reprinted, the source must be indicated:https://www.udeskglobal.com/blog/which-call-center-metrics-are-truly-essential-to-concentrate-on.html

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