Few metrics are as important to the quality of your contact center as your first call resolution rate. This is reflective of how often your agents are resolving consumer complaints or concerns within the first contact with the customer. Unfortunately, many call centers have issues keeping their resolution rate under control.
A low first call resolution rate can mean low productivity and profitability. Your customer satisfaction rate will also experience a major slump if your resolution rate is too low, so keeping it high should be a priority for every contact center.
Is your center struggling with first call resolution? Here’s what you need to know about fixing your rate and getting back into the swing of being a productive, profitable center that serves and satisfies customers:
The Importance of a High Resolution Rate
It’s easy to see why your consumers would want you to have a high first call resolution rate. But why is it so important to your center?
The difference is cost versus revenue. Low first call resolution means high costs. Optimal first call resolution - or FCR - means increased revenue for your facility. It’s a basic equation that makes the reasons for focusing on improving your FCR obvious!
The Starting Point for Fixing Your Rate
Before you can begin repairing your resolution rate, you’ll need to evaluate its current state. Maybe you only need slight adjustments to hit your ultimate goals. Or perhaps you need a major overhaul to be where you want to be. Either way, it all starts with determining where you stand.
Don’t stop at measuring FCR. Look at your customer satisfaction ratings as well. Identify where your weakness lie. All of this information together creates a comprehensive picture of what your facility needs to succeed.
Switch Things Up
Approaching business in the same way you always have and expecting new results is not only illogical, but it also dooms your center to failure. Your best chance at improving your FCR is to create entirely new approaches - or at least make major changes and improvements to those that you already have in place.
Set priorities for your agents. Make sure they understand what you expect. Understand which metrics your team should be focusing on and share that information with your agents to ensure they know where their efforts should be focused.
Your customers should have to put in as a little effort as possible to have their questions answered and their concerns addressed. They should be directed to the right agents every time, so that their needs are best-matched with those who can meet them. Minimizing consumer effort, cutting down on transfers, and decreasing the instances of agents telling consumers “no” are all ways that you can improve both customer satisfaction and FCR rates.
Evaluate as You Go
It’s difficult to determine how well your new approaches are working without regular evaluation. That’s why measuring success as you go - rather than annually - is an important part of keeping your FCR rates high.
How should you evaluate your progress? There are several approaches that can yield excellent results. The first is to ask your agents to evaluate one another. Much like peer revision techniques that are used in the educational setting, this type of evaluation is a learning experience. It helps agents understand their own performance better and reflect on what they might be able to improve upon. It also allows them to boost the confidence of peers while offering constructive criticism that management-level team members might not be able to present effectively.
Another way to evaluate your progress is to ask consumers for feedback. This can be tricky, as many customers are not willing to offer extensive feedback during phone calls. Offer incentives to entice them to provide feedback during or after calls. This will give them a reason to provide their thoughts on how your agents are performing and give you valuable information that you can use to further improve your approach.
You can also use FCR that is automatically recorded via your current software suite as part of overall agent evaluation. Your agents should be focusing on providing excellent customer service and experience. A major part of that is resolving issues quickly - ideally, during the first contact they have with a consumer. Ensure that they understand that their performance in this area will influence their overall performance assessment and you are likely to see a major boost in the quality of their performance in this area.
Ensure Your Agents are Well-Equipped for the Job
Technology and training are important when it comes to keeping your resolution rate where it belongs. It’s the job of your management team to equip your agents with both of these so that they can perform up to the standards you’ve set and deliver high resolution rates day after day.
Training should include more than just handling tasks within the agent’s own department. When possible, train your agents to handle other tasks so that transfers are minimized and more consumer needs can be met by each agent individually. Train agents specifically toward first call resolution and ensure that they repeat training throughout their tenure with the company that revolves around this topic.
It’s also important to ensure that crucial information related to resolving consumer concerns and complaints is always available to your agents. This is where training and technology come together. You should train your staff to be capable of accessing this information, but also provide the tools they need to access it whenever necessary.
If you’re in the market for a tech makeover for your center, contact the industry experts at ChaseData. We have the tools your team needs to keep consumers happy and keep first call resolution where it belongs - sky-high, every day! For more information, call ChaseData today!