Few metrics are as indicative of a call center’s efficiency as First Call Resolution. While some centers are intimidated by this metric and its complexity, many organizations put it on a pedestal and are always on the lookout for effective ways to improve their FCR rate.
A high FCR rate means your agents are able to deliver a satisfactory service on the first customer call. Knowing where your center stands with this metric helps you measure customer satisfaction, pinpoint gaps in agent expertise, and ultimately improve service quality.
FCR is influenced by many factors. Your call center’s tools, access to information, agent knowledge and skills, routing system efficiency, call complexity, and many other variables come into play when you’re measuring or improving this metric.
Why is it important to track this complex metric? What does your call center stand to gain from improving its FCR rate? Well, a high FCR rate can boost your overall performance in four ways.
1.) Enhanced CSAT
There is an apparent and undeniable connection between FCR and customer satisfaction. When the former improves, the latter follows suit, and vice versa. A high FCR rate is a telling sign of a high CSAT because it shows that your agents are able to efficiently and correctly answer your customers’ questions or fix their problems on the first call.
2.) Reduced Costs
A high FCR rate is synonymous with cost reduction. In fact, FCR contributes to high quality customer service, which helps you save money. When your center is able to resolve customer issues on the first call, repeat calls are avoided. As a result, call volumes will go down along with operational costs and cost per call. Profitability, on the other hand, will go up since agents can handle more calls from different customers.
3.) More Opportunities for Selling
Giving customers a satisfactory service on the first interaction creates more opportunities for your agents to entice them with your offerings. Customers tend to be open to hearing about additional products and services that can benefit them if you are able to quickly take care of their immediate needs.
4) Higher Employee Morale
Handling multiple calls from one unsatisfied customer does not only increase operational costs, but may also cause stress for the responsible agent. In fact, dealing with the same issue for a second time can be equally frustrating for both agent and customer.
On the other hand, when agents are able to resolve an issue and eliminate the need for a second call, they feel good about themselves and the call center. Their high morale will then translate to higher productivity on the floor and reduced cases of employee turnover.
Your customers can’t tell if you are able to measure, track or improve your FCR rate. They simply want their questions answered and their problems fixed on the first call. But to provide an optimal experience, you have to understand the different facets of this metric and use it to your advantage.