First Call Resolution (FCR) is a fundamental and valuable metric used in Call Centers. It measures performance for resolving customer issues within the first call. So all the calls that didn't repeat for the same problem or case are forming the FCR rate.
It is considered one of the most tracked metrics in contact centers.
Why do you need FCR?
- To measure Customer satisfaction by the service provided
- To identify weak places in call center agent's knowledge and thus improve training instruments or methodologies
- To enhance the quality of the service
- To find out the gaps in business workflows related to customer care.
The standard for FCR is 70% and higher. TOP Contact centers should demonstrate 80% at least.
How to measure FCR?
To calculate FCR, companies usually use the following formula:
FCR = Number of customer requests resolved on the first call (or contact) / Total Number of unique requests * 100%
It is not easy to track it correctly. Customers can call from different numbers or locations or after some time.
Recent research from SQM Group showed that 93% of customers expect their issue to be solved on the first call. That is why it is a highly valued metric, which leads to efficiency and performance improvement in contact centers.
To improve the FCR rate, we need to pay attention to the following factors:
- More than one-third of unsatisfied customers' requests are caused by agents' mistakes or lack of knowledge.
- Most of those are due to wrong or insufficient organization and process.
- Lots of troubles with first call resolution happen because of miscommunication from the client.
- Repeat calls often appear because of too much spent "on hold" time, which leads us to also important metric - Average Handle Time (AHT). People hate waiting, so they could be disconnected from the call center agent.
What instruments can help us with improving the FCR rate?
One of the most recommended is speech analysis tools. Defining critical communication problems or client dissatisfaction will become much more manageable. Moreover, recent studies show that leaders in call center services use instruments to review and analyze calls more often than outsiders.
If you identify the main reasons for repeated calls or unsolved problems, you will get the basis for the FCR improvement plans or strategies.
And from the small process, you will go to a broader range of business renovation:
To make better decisions call agents should be more qualified and focuses on the company's mission, which means new training and HR processes.
Finding issues in the workflow of a call center will lead to more effective business process management.
Reducing the reasons for dissatisfaction puts out sales increase.
Of course, along with speech analytics, many technological tools are aimed to get better customer satisfaction and more straightforward problem-solving. Automation must be present for determining the main reasons for customer disappointment and agent negligence, getting feedback, providing next steps for the call center representative, and so on.
It isn't easy to touch on the matter without mentioning AI tools. They help capture, recognize and momentarily analyze any call or message and highlight a Contact center team's blind spots and weaknesses. The power of AI makes it easy for managers to identify key pain points of the regular conversation between the agent and the customer. An increased FCR rate will help the company to:
Get better customer satisfaction and NPS level
Grow up-sell opportunities
Strengthen reputation and brand recognition.
Avoid customer's turndown of services or products. Unsolved customer complaints are the most common reason for churn.
First Call Resolution efficiency requires a deep understanding of the customer needs and the power to provide a robust leadership approach at C-level.
You can say that the theory is good, but what about practical advice?
Here are some recommendations which company can implement to boost FCR:
Leverage the benefits of having a CRM system. Get data to track unhappy customers. Use segmentation tools to sort cases by agents, category, products, etc. Try to get a helicopter view to eliminate what causes repeated contacts or calls on the issue.
Automate standard requests which require more than one involvement or any third-party engagement. In the era of chatbots, it is easy to get rid of such inquiries for information as delivery status or time, payments and refunds, order tracking, pricing consultation, etc.
Upgrade the professional level of the Contact Center staff. This step is necessary if the company wants high customer satisfaction and reduced complaints.
Create a specific FCR targeting plan. A strategic approach will help everyone on the team understand what they need to do and why.
FCR rate is not something deadlocked. This measurement is dynamic and constantly changing. It is worth hard work and putting effort into improving FCR daily. Customer happiness and satisfaction with your service are always the number one priority. And don't forget to subscribe, we have so much more to share with you :)