FCR adpotion and utilization
First Call Resolution or FCR as it is known is arguably the most significant and important metric in use in contact centers today. Yet this metric is infrequently used and when employed internal approximations or ‘stand-ins’ often have to be employed. A recent study completed by at Ascent Group ( http://www.ascentgroup.com/) of more than 100 companies in 14 industries found that in companies that are measuring FCR only 44% are competing this measurement based on customer feedback, the balance or 56% employ approximations or ‘stand-ins’ such Call Monitoring (20%), Agent assessments (8%) and internal calculation (27%).
It is critical to all contact centers to not only know why customers are calling (call types), but also whether and how well the call/contact center performs at resolving the inquiry. Without measuring FCR an organization cannot know how well they are meeting their customers’ expectations. In addition at The Taylor Reach Group ( https://thetaylorreachgroup.com/) we have encountered numerous organizations that have been able to reduce operational expense while increasing customer satisfaction by implementing FCR in conjunction with Root Cause Analysis (RCA) and process review to increase resolution rates significantly.
If you are not measuring FCR today, you need to start immediately. The most accurate measure is to ask your customers at the end of each call if you have resolved their ‘issue’ or reason for their call. (Of course if they say no, you must be prepared to revisit the issue.) After all the customer knows why they called and what their expectations were regarding resolution. If you ask your customers you must be prepared to track the results in your CRM or CIS system. In addition you must validate the results periodically through recorded call verification…this will stop/reduce agents improving their own scores by answering the question for the customer. If you don’t have a CRM or CIS then most likely you will employ a stand in such as a second call from the same customer within 48 hours as an indication of FCR not being met on the original call. Depending on the nature of the call and the type of center you operate the time metric of 48 hours may not be appropriate and 24 or 72 may be better. This may also take some fine-tuning to improve the comfort with the result.
If you would like additional information on FCR or other critical metrics in contact center operation please drop me a note at firstname.lastname@example.org.