When you’re striving for success, it pays to compare your metrics to your own successes and failures in the past. This internal comparison is an important part of achieving success in the future - and ultimately, every company is its own biggest competitor.
However, the impact and importance of actual competitors cannot be overlooked. Comparing your contact center’s success to its direct competitors’ is not only a good idea, but it is also necessary when it comes to creating a plan for continued growth and improvement. This process is known as call center benchmarking and it is something that every growing center - and those that hope to expand in the future - should be doing.
Here, we’ll introduce the concept of call center benchmarking in more detail and make it obvious as to why your facility should be focusing on it:
Why Call Center Benchmarking is Important
Wondering why benchmarking is worth your time? There are nearly endless reasons to consider integrating the practice, but some of the most important include:
- Reducing performance gaps. Benchmarking can pinpoint where your staff is falling short and help you make meaningful strides toward improving performance and closing those gaps.
- Identifying areas that need improvement before they become too far gone. Have you ever felt like a problem has been going on too long to have any hope of fixing it? By benchmarking proactively, you’ll never feel that way again!
- Reducing costs. Keeping costs low is a pleasant effect of benchmarking since unnecessary processes can be eliminated through streamlining toward productivity.
- Improving growth. Want to expand your operation and grow as a company? Benchmark against your fastest-growing and most successful competitors.
- Enhancing employee output and boosting productivity. If you want to motivate your employees, the healthy competition and drive that benchmarking helps to foster is a great way to do exactly that.
How Does Call Center Benchmarking Work?
Call center benchmarking is a multi-step process. Cutting corners can keep the entire process from yielding the results your center is hoping for, so it is important to understand the importance of each phase and give each the proper focus along the way.
- Process determination - Do you want to take part in process benchmarking - the comparison of your company against industry standards - or competitive benchmarking, which compares you directly to your competition? Deciding which type of benchmarking to use and how to proceed is your first step.
- Collection of data - Gathering data in a reliable manner is important since this information will be used for numerous applications to help your company grow and improve. Make sure information about your own company and your competitors is accurate, even if the results aren’t flattering.
- Benchmarking - This is where the actual benchmarking happens, where the comparison between collected data takes place.
- Communication of results - What good are your benchmarking results if you don’t do anything with them? Once you’ve determined where you stack up in comparison to your competitors, it’s time to catalog and communicate that information.
- Pinpointing objectives and preparation of plans - Take the information you gleaned from your research and the comparison of your company and your competitors and make plans for growth and improvement. This is a necessary step since the information is otherwise useless if you don’t work toward a goal with it.
- Implementation and monitoring - Now that you have plans in place, it’s time to put them to work - and monitor how well they work for your center. Remember, too, that benchmarking isn’t a one-time thing. You can repeat the process as many times as you see fit and continue to implement and monitor for success moving forward!
Now that you understand why you should use call center benchmarking and how it works, which types are right for your center? Here are several of the most common types that today’s contact centers benefit from:
Cutting cost without sacrificing customer service and experience quality is always a top concern for modern call centers. A few metrics that you can benchmark to make improvements that will help you do this include:
- Cost per call - How much is each call costing your company?
- Cost per chat via other channels - This is similar to the aforementioned metric, except that it measures the cost for other communication channels.
- Cost per web ticket - This measures the typical cost of creating a web ticket for one customer.
These metrics are all valuable in understanding why costs may be high, as well as in reducing them without letting other areas of service suffer.
Want to see how your center’s agents measure up against those that fill the seats in your competition’s centers? Check the following stats to see where your team falls in comparison to others:
- Employee job satisfaction - How satisfied are your agents with their roles in your company - and what could you be doing to improve this metric?
- Occupancy and utilization - How well are your agents using their on-the-clock time?
- Agent attrition or turnover - What percentage of agents overall are you keeping in their seats from year to year - and what could you be doing to keep more of your staff from leaving their jobs?
Productivity and Voice Quality Benchmarks
Some important benchmarks for judging the quality of your center in comparison to your direct competitors include:
- Call quality - How well can callers hear and understand your agents - and how easy are conversations to understand on playback after being recorded?
- First call resolution - What percentage of calls resolve a consumer’s issue on the first attempt? This is important since it directly relates to our next metric.
- Customer satisfaction - Customer satisfaction is one of the most important metrics to measure. The happier your consumers are, the better you’re doing in comparison to your competition!
For all the tools and technology you need to achieve your call center benchmarking goals, see the industry experts at ChaseData. We have everything your team needs to understand their place in the local and global market, provide better customer service and improve their metrics, and achieve their goals in moving beyond the competition. Give us a call today to learn more!