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Take Charge of Your Data: 7 Key Contact Center Metrics Explained

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CallTowerOriginally posted on Five9: Many companies embrace the value of "commitment to continuous improvement."  What we measure, improves. The only way to gauge how your people, processes, and technology are delivering on your strategic and business objectives is to benchmark key performance indicators (KPIs), track them rigorously, make operational adjustments, and measure the results.

The challenge: nearly 40 percent of contact center manages struggle to identify and measure the KPIs that could improve their ability to serve their customers, agents and bottom line.

To provide some best-practices recommendations, the International Customer Management Institute (ICMI) conducted extensive research into the metrics employed by leading contact centers. 

The resulting report identifies seven essential KPI categories ranging from the tactical to the strategic, including 20 distinct metrics that can give you the business intelligence you need to pinpoint opportunities for improvement.

 Here are seven KPI categories to consider:

  1) Workload Forecasting

Nearly two out of three ICMI contact centers surveyed measure their forecast accuracy, but not consistently across all channels. This represents a lost opportunity, especially as omnichannel interactions become the new norm.

 2) Agent Accessibility

 ICMI research shows that leading contact centers handle this scheduling from the bottom up, not top down, in order to gain buy-in from their agents. With the team working together to optimize schedules based on agent skills, location, and preferences, you’re more likely to increase adherence to these schedules, which facilitates workload handling.

 3) Resource Accessibility

When contacts don’t reach the right place at the right time, the quality of customer service drops off precipitously. Setting and measuring service level and response time objectives can help you identify where issues occur most frequently so that you can make process changes or shift resources so agents are available when customers want via the channels they choose.

 4) Resolution Quality

While ICMI found that 82% of centers measure the quality of their contacts, just over half monitor first contact resolution (FCR). It's critical to track all service channels to get a holistic picture of the customer experience. For example, customers who prefer to use email may not care that you’re surpassing phone objectives if their own experience with your contact center isn’t at a similar high level.

 5) Employee Satisfaction

The high cost of training new hires makes it more cost-efficient to retain agents who are already knowledgeable about your products and processes, which is why this metric is critical to your overall measurement strategy.

 6) Customer Satisfaction

Establishing a baseline for benchmarking over time gives you a tangible measure of the impact that meeting your business objectives is having on your customer base. ICMI research shows that contact centers are not consistently measuring their customer experience across multiple channels, which can leave them vulnerable in today’s omnichannel environments.

 7) Strategic Value

Even contact centers that are primarily service bureaus should measure the overall value of the center's contribution to overall company goals. These metrics surface the role it plays in revenue generation, marketing initiatives, product innovation, and other primary business objectives and can be used to calculate contact center ROI, performance against budget, revenue and cost per contact.

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