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How to Measure and Improve the Customer Experience

As any sports fan knows, baseball is driven by statistics. There is a statistic for everything imaginable in baseball. But, it hasn’t always been as statistics-driven as it is today. In the last 30-40 years of baseball’s distinguished history, a practice called Sabermetrics has become an essential part of the game. There was even a movie made about it – “Moneyball”, starring Brad Pitt. Sabermetrics is all about creating new statistics and analytical tools to optimize team and individual performance, as well as to determine which players are the best in certain situations and scenarios.

So, how exactly does that relate to a contact center?

Automatic Call Distribution (ACD) statistics are like the basic baseball stats of the call center. Just like batting average, home runs, RBIs, stolen bases, and ERA in baseball, you have a dearth of statistics like Average Handle Time, Average Hold Time, Average Queue Time, Service Level, and more. These are great statistics and provide call center managers with a lot of important information. But, how do you translate them to tell what is most important in specific situations? How do you directly correlate these statistics to the goals and vision of the contact center?

Measuring Customer Experience

Enter Workforce Optimization, or WFO for short. WFO stats are like today’s Sabermetric baseball stats. They help call center leaders understand if things are going as well as they should be.

Here are some of the statistics that are available to WFO users, and the impact they can have on the call center.

First Contact Resolution – primarily derived from Surveys or QM Evaluations, this can let you know if you are helping your customers right the first time. If a high percentage of calls are not achieving First Contact Resolution, more resources will be required to resolve customer queries resulting in reduced efficiency and increased customer frustration.

Net Promoter Score – another stat that is derived from Surveys, this score can tell you the proportion of your customers that are so happy that they would actually tell other people.

Adherence Reporting – a fortunate byproduct of Workforce Management (or WFM) scheduling. When top WFM applications are integrated with your ACD, they analyze how closely your agents are adhering to their schedule. This is important, because their schedule was used by the WFM scheduling engine to ensure that your call center objectives are being met based on forecasts of expected call volume.

Customer Survey Results – a great way to see how customers’ opinions trend over time, as well as how individual agents are doing in their quest to help. Good surveys will allow call center leaders to gain valuable insight on everything from satisfaction with agent performance, to satisfaction with specific products, to whether first contact resolution is truly happening or not.

Quality Management Evaluation Results – Where Surveys are the way to see how agents are performing from the customer perspective, QM Evaluations are the way to see how agents are performing from the paradigm of the call center goals and vision. QM Evaluations data can also be compared to Customer Survey data, to ensure that the contact center is “on the right track” to making customers happy and improving their experience.

In summary, regular ACD-based metrics can give a good and solid picture of what’s happening in your call center and, by extension, the quality of your customers’ experiences. But it’s when you look at additional sources of information – WFO statistics, the Sabermetrics of the contact center – that you can truly tell how effective your call center is at ensuring a great customer experience, and how you can improve to make those experiences even better.