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The real value of FCR.

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The real value of FCR.

The more satisfied the customer, the more loyal they’ll be that is why the contact centre industry needs to embrace customer centricity.

It’s not mystery that first contact resolution is one of the main drivers for customer satisfaction. Even the smallest improvements  to first contact resolution (FCR) have impact on increasing customer satisfaction, at a astonishing rate of 1:1, which quite frankly is huge.

Cost Effective.

First Contact resolution not only increases customer satisfaction, but improving FCR in your contact centre should be the top priority, simply because it greatly reduces costs. So there is without a shadow of doubt a business case for improving first contact resolution, as a result many companies are investing heavily in customer service training and analytics tools, to measure and improve this voluble metric. But is focusing mainly on FCR sufficient in order to maintain customer loyalty?

Keep it balanced.

Most certainly not.  There are many vital aspects that correspond and impact customer satisfaction thus shaping customer loyalty, these “what-if’s” are:

  • What if; you encountered a poorly trained contact centre agent?
  • What if; the representative didn’t have sufficient product knowledge?
  • What if; you had to be kept on hold for 20 minutes while listening to some ungodly music track?
  • What if; the issue was resolved but the agent was rude and interrupted the conversation numerous times?

This is why overly focusing on one metric is a sign of bad management. Embrace the balanced scorecard tactic and evaluate your employees and customer service process’s using these criteria:

  • First Contact Resolution
  • Post contact IVR survey, ask the customer how would they rate the experience
  • Customer retention metric to evaluate the likelihood of a customer leaving within 4 weeks
  • Include Average Handle Time; despite all the hate it gets, if you wish you could keep it hidden from the contact centre agents
  • Cross-selling abilities
  • Average time spent on hold; waiting on hold is despised by the customers
  • Number of appropriate escalations
  • Employee satisfaction; happy staff = happy customers

First contact resolution is a vital metric which greatly impacts customer satisfaction and helps reducing costs, but focusing on FCR alone is simply not enough. Take all variable into consideration when trying to increase customer loyalty and act accordingly, ask the customers what parts of the customer experience you provide do they cherish and which ones do they despise, and get to work.