Any contact center manager today knows that analytics are key when it comes to monitoring your agents’ performance.
Thanks to the benefits of technology, data is everywhere - and if you have the right contact center software solutions, it’s easy to collect. Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) like call abandonment rate, first call resolution, and others can be easily viewed with a simple click of a button.
However, it’s not the monitoring that will lead you to improved results and better service. It’s what you do with those KPIs that will have a real effect on the way your contact center operates. Alone, KPIs are just numbers - but if you can interpret those numbers in a wider context, you can figure out how to achieve the positive results you’re looking for.
If you’re going to gain actionable insight from your KPIs, you need to make sure you’re monitoring the right ones.
You’re probably already monitoring some of the basic contact center KPIs like average handle time and average speed of answer. These are important ones for every call center manager to keep an eye on.
But there are others that you can choose to monitor based on the issues you’re trying to address. Is agent absenteeism a problem? That’s a KPI you should be watching.
Are you noticing your agents taking longer to answer calls? You may want to start tracking Average After Call Work Time, which is the length of time it takes an agent to finish recording information, updating databases, and performing any other necessary tasks after hanging up the phone.
Once you’ve started monitoring the right KPIs, you’re on track to improving your customer service.
If one of your KPIs is less than satisfactory - call abandonment rate, for example - it’s time to look more closely at what’s going on.
If lots of customers are hanging up before reaching an agent, there’s a reason. Look at your other KPIs: is agent absenteeism rising? Is agent turnover higher than it used to be? Is the after call work time too long?
Looking at these KPIs can help you decide how to address the problem you’re having. If your After Call Work Time numbers are high, maybe your agents are having to spend too long after calls documenting the information they received. This means that they’re spending less time answering phones, which contributes to a longer hold time, which is most likely why your call abandonment rates are high.
You could do many things to address this problem. You could change the way after call work is performed to make it faster and easier. You could assign after call work to different agents, freeing up others to get right back on the phones. Or perhaps you need to improve your knowledge management so agents have access to the information they need during calls.
To get a good idea of where your contact center stands, compare your numbers to industry benchmarks. This will give you a better perspective on which issues actually need attention. It could be that a number you’re not happy with is fairly standard for contact centers of your type.
That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try to improve it, of course, but it will help you form more realistic expectations.
If you want to get the most out of your KPIs, share them with the rest of your organization. If agents are being asked to improve a certain function, they’ll be more likely to do so if they can track their own progress.
In addition, if they can see how what they do affects the contact center at large, agents will feel more vested in their work. This, in turn, will lead to a more positive workplace and better customer service.
Are you struggling with how to monitor KPIs at your contact center? Read our post “The Contact Center KPIs You Should Be Tracking.”