First Call Resolution – The Most Important Metric

First Call Resolution – The Most Important Metric

By Navdeep Chandel

First Call Resolution is the most important metric to keep track of in any call center. First call resolution, or FCR, is calculated by dividing the number of calls resolved on first contact by the number of customers that called in during a certain time period.

Improving your call center’s first call resolution performance also reduces operating cost, improves customer satisfaction, increases selling opportunities and improves employee satisfaction.

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Achieving a high first call resolution rate reduces operating costs by decreasing the number of times a customer has to call back to have their issue resolved. The call center industry has an average first contact resolution rate of 67%, which means that 33% of customers will be calling back at least one more time.

Considering that large contact centers handle millions of calls every year, increasing the first call resolution rate by only a few percent will have a huge impact on the bottom line.

When a customer has their issue resolved on the first call and without much hassle, they will probably be satisfied with your contact center. In fact, average customer satisfaction drops by 15% each time they have to call back. FCR and customer satisfaction are highly correlated.

Increasing first level resolution increases your contact centers opportunities to sell. Before a customer’s needs are resolved, the CSR has no right to engage in any sales activity.

Trying to cross-sell before an issue is resolved makes the customer feel that the CSR is putting the organization’s needs ahead of the needs of its customers. Not only will that not convince the customer to buy, but it will probably make them think twice about doing business with your organization in the future.

Call centers that have low FCR often suffer from high turnover and low employee satisfaction. Taking a second or third call from a customer whose problem was not solved on the first call can be very stressful for a CSR. Research indicates that only 10% of employees feel that call center management is focusing enough resources on improving FCR.

70% of SQM Group Inc. clients have been improving their first call resolution rate year over year. Learn more about how the FCR experts at SQM can help your call center improve through SQM’s FCR/Csat Benchmarking Study: http://www.sqmgroup.com/first-call-resolution-level-1

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