Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Contact Center Statistics or Performance Metrics

There is a difference between statistics and performance metrics. Both are very helpful to the contact center but are used in two different ways. Confusing the two can be costly if you are purchasing a solution to improve the efficiency of your call center.

Statistics can provide a view of what is happening in the call center right now, for the interval or for the day. These statistics are helpful when the agents, team leaders and managers want to know the current status of the call center. Good statistics that show the status of the call center are:
Average Handle Time (AHT) or Average Call Handle Time (ACHT)
Service Level (SL%)
Abandon Rate (ABN%)
Average Speed Answer (ASA)
Longest Wait Time (LWT)
Calls in Queue (CIQ)
There are many more statistics that are available and each Call Center manager needs to determine what is best for their call center. These statistics and more are available from your ACD.

Performance metrics provide a different picture of the contact center. While statistics show us what is going on for our call center from our point of view performance metrics will show you what your customers think of your agents and call center. The team leader or call center manager may be aware of the call center status (statistics) but not aware of what the customers think of the call center or how well we are doing compared to our goals (performance metrics).

Performance metrics can provide a view of what our customers think of our call center and how we are doing compared to our goals. For example a recent study showed that agents thought their customer satisfaction rate was above 80% while the customer gave a satisfaction rating of just above 60%. Some performance statistics that are useful to the call center manager are:
First Call Resolution (FCR%)
Customer Satisfaction (CSat%)
Agent Utilization Rate (AUR%)
Cost per Contact (CoC)
Average Speed Answer (ASA)
Abandonment Rate (ABN%)

These metrics will provide a true picture of performance in the call center, identify strengths and weaknesses, and help establish goals for the call center and agents. Used properly these same metrics can be used in a scorecard (A single weighted number that shows how well the call center is performing, today)

Each contact center needs to select the metrics and statistics that are appropriate based on the businesses industry. However, it is not unusual for a single contact center to have different metrics for different groups.

So to truly improve the efficiency of the contact Performance Metrics are the better option. These metrics provide a view of the contact center from the customers point of view and give the manager an image of what needs to be worked on to improve the contact center productivity and efficiency.

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