Metrics play an important role in contact center operations. You can learn from this data to improve productivity and service levels. One of the most important metrics is the set of first call resolution stats.
By measuring and understanding first call resolution rates, you can unlock customer satisfaction and service efficiency insights. It may also help you reduce costs and staff more precisely. Let’s take a deep dive into these critical contact center analytics.
What Is First Call Resolution?
First call resolution refers to the ability of an agent to resolve a customer’s complaint or request in the first contact attempt. It’s a percentage of calls addressed in the first contact compared to the total number of calls.
How to Measure First Call Resolution
Even though it’s such an essential metric, there isn’t an industry standard. Instead, you’ll need to rely on a contact center solution to track it and provide reports. You could run them on a weekly or monthly basis.
You will need to determine how you’ll gather data on first-call resolutions. For example, you might ask the caller in a post-call survey. However, not all will participate. Agents can encourage customers to respond to the survey questions by asking them at the end of the conversation. You could also use callback data, but a customer could call from different numbers. Your contact center software should provide you with a consistent way to collect this data.
What’s the Standard for First Call Resolution?
According to global research, it’s between 70 and 75 percent. However, different companies measure it in different ways. That number also doesn’t break down by industry type. Another nuance would be B2C vs. B2B. Contact centers taking consumer calls may be less complex than those dealing with business owners.
What Does First Call Resolution Tell You?
There’s so much to unpack in first call resolution stats. Measuring it can help you with your contact center initiatives, such as enhancing customer experiences, reducing costs, and optimizing resources. Here’s what you can learn from it.
Your Most Effective Agents
You’ll be able to see first call resolution by agent, and some will do better than others. Then you need to ask why. It could represent agents that have a higher skill level or more experience. It could also reflect those with the most training.
The bottom line is that these agents resolve customer issues effectively, and you’ll want to identify the “secret” to their success to implement it further.
Moreover, you may want to reallocate your top performers to work at peak call times, as they may be able to handle more calls faster but with quality service.
Your Call Routing Is or Isn’t Successful
With intelligent routing, you are matching customer needs with the agent that has those skills. You’re collecting information through your IVR (Interactive Voice Response) to make those decisions.
Your first call resolution stats could offer business intelligence on how successful this is. Are first call resolutions falling because the routing is missing context? You may want to test out some changes to see if it impacts your rate.
If you see topic trends in your first call resolution analytics, this is vital information to share with other business units. It may be something simple that your company needs to make more apparent, such as product instructions or questions about shipping or returns.
You may find that adding answers to these in your FAQs reduces calls about them. Additionally, if it’s product-specific, you might want to talk to product managers about adding wording to packaging or on the product page of your website.
The best first call resolution prevents customers from having to make the call in the first place.
It’s a Good Way to Take the Pulse on Customer Sentiment
If you witness first call resolution rates taking a nosedive, that’s a probable indicator that customer satisfaction is faltering. It could be one more metric you use to track sentiment to see if it aligns with other analytics that measure this, whether that’s customer surveys or brand mentions in the media.
You’ll need to track the data for a while to understand if it’s a trend or outlier. Consider why there may have been a decrease. Did you launch a new product? Were there issues with your communication systems? Keep in mind that correlation doesn’t always imply causation.
If you identify that customer issues go beyond one call, it’s important to share that information with decision-makers. They can then combine that information with other data and pivot as necessary.
Conversely, if first call resolution is going up, it could indicate stronger customer satisfaction.
Since you can learn so much from first call resolution stats, you’re likely to want to improve this metric and reap the rewards of greater insight.
Improving First Call Resolution Can Save You Money
The highest cost in a contact center is labor. If you have fewer repeat calls, then you need less staff. Plus, those agents can do more high-level work (like analyzing metrics). You’ll be able to staff more strategically so that you’re maximizing resources and not incurring more costs.
A Greater First Call Resolution Can Limit Customer Churn
Customers can be fickle. They have high expectations around service. Customer loyalty is hard to come by if you can’t meet expectations. A rising first-call resolution rate signifies that your agents are handling issues quickly.
Customers come away from the exchange with the information they need. It’s likely a positive interaction, so they’ll be more likely to remain a customer and could even buy more products or services from your company.
First Call Resolution Stats Are Powerful in Understanding Contact Center Performance
First call resolution, along with other metrics, can be a powerful tool in understanding how your contact center is performing. You can access these analytics and enjoy functionality that enables you to optimize your operations with Intermedia Contact Center. Explore how it works today.
October 6, 2021
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