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Finally, the 3 most actionable call center KPIs 🤓   

This article will not be about the listing of the KPIs within call centers because you probably already know them all. Today’s article is based on the best ways to translate 4 essential KPIs into action to optimize your call center and achieve your best SLA objectives. 


Let’s take a quick look at the 3 categories of KPIs. 

There are many indicators to consider which can be grouped into 3 main categories: human resources, management and productivity. 

These KPIs make it possible to measure and evaluate the performance of actions within an organization. The purpose of this data collection is to help, manage and measure the effectiveness of the activity in order to ensure decision-making or monitoring in several areas to achieve specific objectives. 

Smart or nothing 

KPIs have SMART objectives, they must be: Specific, Measurable, Accessible/Achievable, Achievable or Realistic and Time-bound. 

Having specific performance indicators is essential to avoid wasting time. In this context, there defining an indicator is very important to know what it corresponds to exactly. Thus, it must be detailed, and target only one specific element, that is : one thing at a time.  

Not to forget, the final objective is obtained through comparisons. Thus one can orient oneself in the margin of progress towards the given objective. The more specific your indicator is, the easier it will be to compare and measure over time. 

A performance indicator must be accessible and achievable in order to gather relevant data to have a result around common objectives. There is no point in setting goals that you know are unattainable before you even start. The ultimate goal of the approach tends to realize our margin of progress at the moment in relation to a future objective. There is therefore no point in putting the cart before the horse, we must realize that whatever we are doing now will définitely impact the future. 

Finally, a performance indicator must be able to be measured over time in order to establish comparisons between several key periods. 

Achieving your goals: the 4 essential metrics 

The pick-up rate 

The pick-up rate is an indicator measuring the number of calls your teams answer out of the total number of calls received. It is calculated according to the following formula: number of calls answered/number of calls made x 100. This KPI is an indicator of efficiency and quality which is used to measure the proportion of incoming calls answered within a given time expressed in seconds. 

The improvement of the pick-up rate is made through the optimization of the outgoing call dialing strategy. Dialing a number and waiting for someone to pick up does not guarantee sales growth. Nowadays, the dialing processes adopted by outbound contact centers are generally smarter: 

  • They use phone numbers with a 09 suffix so customers don’t feel harassed, which leads to an increase in their efficiency. 
  • There is also a higher pick-up rate when using a short local number.  
  • The call is made at strategic times (not too early in the morning or late at night). 
  • To learn more about the latest dialing methods, watch our online webinar now.

The average processing time

The average processing time is combined with the average conversation time, which must be calculated in order to be counted as an after-call. So, after the call, we will take into account the traceability of the communication and the processing time of the request. To conclude, if you take too long to process a request, your indicator will automatically drop. 

Here are some tips for best results and good optimize treatment time: 

  • An agent must be able to know when and how to forward a call to other agents. Moreover, being imperatively informed of company advances, new products or services is a must. Good agent training will result in prompt advice, thus good service. 
  • The agent must listen attentively to the client’s voice in order to identify his mood. The tone of voice is important to act accordingly, with the aim understanding their situation and giving good advice. 
  • Knowing the ways to optimize the IVR by connecting the customers to the most qualified agents so that the customer obtain precise information. The IVR option must be updated regularly so that the messages are in line to the present scenario. This function reduces the number calls agents need to attend and there is the notion self-care. 
  • Always be clear with the customer and communicate whenever the agent is looking for relevant information because silence on the phone can be misinterpreted – the customer may think they have been disconnected. 
    To conclude with a reduced average pick-up time, you have a happy and satisfied client satisfied with the experience you provided. Having a good strategy allows you to have a good experience as customers want. 

First contact resolution rate

This indicator corresponds to the rate of requests resolved during the customer’s first contact. It can be through a voice contact, an email or even a chat. This metric is used to assess customer satisfaction as well as the performance of the support team. It is calculated by taking the total number of requests resolved on first contact divided by the total number of requests over a given period.

In order to improve the resolution rate, certain standards must be applied: 

  • Empathy by advisors are needed to understand the customer needs. 
  • Specific questions must be asked to obtain specific answers so that agents know how to effectively manage the customer request. 
  • Feedback must be given by the client so that the client’s satisfaction will be taken care by the advisor and every problem is resolved. Having a follow-up with the customer, about his experience from the beginning allows both parties to be more fluid during the interaction. Through this method, we can easily understand what the customer is saying and we can therefore easily manage and take control of the call. 
  • Free and automated means of communication are essential to quickly solve simple problems such as an online chatbot or an IVR. 
  • Finally, optimizing the omnichannel strategy is essential as customer interactions must be managed independently despite the channels used. Agents must be trained on the respective channels in order to master a good understanding before interacting with the customer. These strategies help to reduce costs as well as satisfy users by boosting customer loyalty.  

Average response time

The average response time is used to estimate the quality of work and thus assessing the efficiency of a call center. It is coupled with other customer satisfaction indices, because the objective is not only to respond “quickly”, but also to respond “correctly” to the request of his customer. 
To reduce the waiting time, having an efficient IVR is essential, as it is simple and precise. It allows the customer to have a good experience due to the quick access to a qualified agent. This agent can quickly respond to the needs in order to have satisfied customers and thus, a shorter queue. 
To conclude, your call center needs to measure its strengths and weaknesses in order to evolve and progress towards your objectives. Through these 4 key indicators, you will already have an understanding of the position of activity. This is to establish a specific to-to-list of things to improve both in terms of your human resources and your management to boost your productivity.