Call center metrics give a business owner a range of information. Much of it depends on what type of metrics you collect. Many use their metrics to gauge their team performance and efficiency as well as their customers.
Business owners and managers have a quantity of incoming data that focuses on the business and its processes. Metrics help them monitor and better understand the data. These metrics are gathered from the CRS, call center management tools, and other software your business uses to manage your call center.
Which metrics are important? Generally, the ones that are important to the business give a clear picture of its day-to-day operations.
Why You Need Metrics
A call center needs to know how it’s doing in satisfaction, productivity, efficiency, and cost-effectiveness. Metrics provide valuable insights into how the call center is performing and identify areas where it needs improvement.
On the employee side, metrics help determine the strengths and weaknesses of each agent, as well as identify your best agents. With this information, you can also identify areas for improvement, and schedule staff accordingly.
Information From Metrics
Metrics can identify issues with your current technology so you can adjust as needed. They aren’t just for the call center side: your metrics can also help you learn about your customers’ experience when they call. Customers dislike:
- Waiting too long
- Providing the information they believe your company already has or should have
- Explaining their problem several times to multiple agents
Your metrics also help identify what is—and isn’t—working for them, so you can make changes to optimize their experience. Several types of metrics show each facet of the caller’s experience and your call center’s performance.
The most common call center KPIs (key performance indicators) are:
- Business Value
- Customer Satisfaction
- Operational Efficiency
- People Management
The key to optimization lies in what you do with your data after it’s collected, analyzed, and measured.
Call Center Customer Performance Metrics
These eight metrics show how your call center performs.
- Agent Utilization Rate—this shows how an agent uses their time during a shift. Divide the number of hours the agent works by their availability for the score. That is, an agent scheduled to work eight hours and is engaged in calls for six hours means that their utilization score is 75% (6÷8=.75)
- Average Call Abandonment—this metric shows how many callers simply hang up before reaching an agent, for whatever reason. The goal of any call center is to have this number at or near zero. High rates of call abandonment point to understaffing, underperformance by agents, bad processes, and technology that’s not up to the task.
- Average Handle Time, or AHT—this metric measures how long it takes one or more agents to successfully handle a caller’s issue. Many call centers evaluate their agents on their speed in handling callers and resolving their issues with the fastest considered the most valuable. Call centers want to reduce the caller’s wait times and increase retention. The lower this number, the better, but too low may indicate that something is wrong. Callers do not want to keep calling back for the same issue or explain themselves repeatedly to different agents. The goal is the best outcome in the least time. This metric shows not only the agent’s proficiency but also includes needed improvement in technology or work processes that are not optimal.
- Call Arrival Rate—this metric shows the frequency and number of inbound calls during a period. This metric is essential to determine both peak calling hours and seasonal trends so that you can hire and schedule staff knowledgeably and accordingly.
- Cost per Call, or CPC—how much does each call cost, and what’s your ROI? CPC metrics measure that cost, help you make accurate business forecasts, and where you may need to make cuts. Find this number by adding the total costs of doing business (labor, technology, and other related business expenses) and divide that by the total number of calls. The CPC should be as low as possible to support the call center. High numbers indicate an inefficiency somewhere, either with agents taking too long, with the technology, or both.
- First Call Resolution, or FCR—can your agents resolve a customer’s issue on the first call without transferring, pausing, escalating, or returning the call? The higher this number, the better. A related metric is repeated call rate (RCR), which shows how many customers needed multiple calls for their problem resolution.
- First Response Time, or FRT—this simple metric measures the average time a customer waits before speaking with an agent. As a rule, the lower your FRT, the higher likelihood of a satisfied customer. Higher numbers mean that you may need to change your staffing, improve your agents’ productivity, or update your telecom system to handle fluctuating call volumes. This is where a VoIP system can help since easy scalability is built into most systems.
- Percentage of Calls Blocked—this metric indicates the number of inbound callers who receive a busy signal, which can negatively impact customer experience. A busy signal means many of your customers cannot reach an agent. This number needs to be as low as possible. A high number means that your system needs to be updated or configured to handle your call volumes as needed. Your staffing levels may need to be updated, or increase your agent productivity accordingly.
These metrics directly impact your company’s efficiency and bottom line since they are part of the customer’s experience.
Call Center Metrics To Measure Customer Experience
Do your customers like calling your company? These metrics from customer surveys show you.
- Customer Satisfaction Score, or CSAT—by asking customers with a survey, you can immediately learn how satisfied they are with your call center and company. Using a score from one to five, or whatever scale you choose, you get accurate feedback on your call center’s performance.
- Customer Effort Score, or CES—how easy was it for your customers to resolve their problem during their call? In the survey, ask how easy it was to resolve their problem during the call from one to five. Then subtract those who gave answers of four and five from those who gave one and two. The higher the score, the better.
Once you’ve collected this information, it’s up to you and your managers to interpret the findings, make and implement plans based on the findings, work with your staff to refine processes, and continually improve them. Monitor and analyze your metrics to see what works and what doesn’t.
Press 8 Telecom’s Queue Metrics Call Monitoring Software lets you monitor your call center traffic in real-time and check your metrics from anywhere. Queue Metrics features a page for each agent and a customizable wallboard for managers to see what they need. Combined with a state-of-the-art VoIP phone system, your call center can run smoothly and give your customers the right help at the right time. Call today for a free quote for your company.