It has become common knowledge that data-driven decisions are essential to modern business. The old “throw spaghetti at the wall and see what sticks” strategy just isn’t going to cut it in today’s marketplace. At this point, we’ve all heard the words “metric” and “KPI” thrown around. Perhaps we’ve even started diligently measuring our own KPIs. But the question remains:
Once you’ve collected the data, what’re you going to do with it?
Let’s go through the use case of an inbound call center to tease out what it truly means to make data-driven decisions.
Two types of reporting metrics
Access past data within a specific time frame. Historical metrics can be used to help set realistic benchmarks (e.g. If the average abandonment rate was 45% in January, it wouldn’t be reasonable to expect the rate to be 5% in February.)
Real-time reporting is exactly what it sounds like — live data. Real-time metrics give you instant information about what’s happening in your call center at any moment. This is great for identifying and reacting to any issues, such as an elevated call volume.
Inbound call center KPIs
Any call center solution worth its salt will give supervisors and agents access to many different metrics. It is the responsibility of the call center manager to determine which key performance indicators (KPIs) to track in specific. Examples of call center KPIs include:
- Service level
- First call resolution
- Average handle time
- Average time in queue
- Average speed of answer
- Average abandonment rate
- Average after call work time
How to leverage your data
Call center managers and agents who have invested in a call center software solution with advanced reporting and taken the time to configure and track their metrics may feel lost about next steps. It’s clear that data-driven decisions should be made, but what does that even entail?
1. Track the right metrics
First things first: whatever call center KPIs have been selected are a great indicator of where your focus should be. Why have you chosen to pay special attention to something if it’s not going to influence your strategy? Figure out which KPIs matter most for your company and start tracking them.
2. Compare the data
Use industry benchmarks to get a sense of where your company stands. Is 10 seconds a reasonable speed of answer for call centers of your kind?
3. Get to the root of the problem
If one of your call center KPIs is notable for some reason (too high, too low, drastically changed in a short period of time), do what you can to determine why. If your average time in queue is too long, you may want to investigate whether you have an adequate number of agents, whether agents are spending excessive times on calls, whether agents statuses are not set to “Available” often enough, etc. When you have ascertained the cause, you can fix it!
4. Let your metrics see the light of day
Simply providing visibility into your KPIs can make a difference. Empower agents by letting them see the inner workings of your inbound call center. Allowing agents to watch their progress and adjust their workflows to meet goals enables them to feel more a part of your organization. You may even take it one step further and implement call center gamification.
Learn more and get specific figures when you tune in to our upcoming webinar with SpotHero’s Support Operations Lead, Nate Peace and Talkdesk’s Product Manager Robert Sur. They’ll be exploring how SpotHero incorporated real-time call center data from Talkdesk Live to improve their service level by 58%.