The First Call Resolution – A Vital Customer Service Metric

The First Call Resolution – A Vital Customer Service Metric

The First Call Resolution - A Vital Customer Service Metric

Being on par in terms of price and quality only gets you into the game. Service wins the game. —Tony Alessandra

The First Call Resolution (FCR) is the most important customer metric that deals with customer satisfaction and helps to improve organizational operational efficiency. FCR can be defined as handling customer enquiries or problems in just a single interaction. First impression is the best Impression. Solving customer issues at the first go not only helps to build greater customer experience but also helps to retain customers, leading to an increase in organizational productivity.

Now let’s have a look at some statistical data, which highlights the importance of FCR:

  • The Ascent group research report states that 60% of companies measuring FCR performance for more than one year reported improvement in their performance and that improvement ranged from 1-30% with an average annual gain of 2%.
  • The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics for Customer Service Representatives (2008) illustrates that an inbound contact center with 250 agents can save nearly $235,000 annually (or the equivalent of seven full-time agents), by increasing FCR by only 5% point.
  • According to Dr. Jodie Monger-President of customer relationship metrics, “Field experience in measuring customer satisfaction indicates the caller satisfaction both the customer service representative and with the company in general will be 5-10% lower when it takes more than one call to resolve the issue than it is when the issue is resolved on the first call”.

Most of the customer service agents are unable to respond to their customers at the first call and this results in repeated calls. According to Yankee group, 66% of contact center costs today are due to callbacks.

Repeated calls occur if customer service agents fail to interact with their customers due to reasons like:

  • Lack of information about the product and its services
  • Long holding times
  • Lack of soft skills

One of the best practices to increase the FCR rates is to train the customer service agents. Classroom training helps to deliver better knowledge on soft skills to the agents, which makes them knowledgeable of following customer etiquettes while handling a call.

The reinforcement in training process can be done through eLearning because it supports interactive and ongoing learning. It helps the agents to gain effective knowledge on what the product is about and its services, which directly help the agents to effectively handle customer calls related to the product enquiries. ELearning sessions are interactive and therefore they would support the active participation of agents and help them to know how to tackle the issues on call the very first time. ELearning courses on tele-handling help the agents to know how to actively engage customers through a call and reduce holding times.

Providing training to the agents is one of the factors that contribute to increase an FCR rate, which in turn leads to decline in callbacks, increases customer satisfaction and adds to the revenue of an organization.

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