New Industry Survey Reveals Contact Industry Priorities

MCM Outlook 2014, a new survey from Multi-Channel Merchant, provides an interesting snapshot into the priorities at more than 1,200 contact centers. When asked, “what is the most important contact center measurement you rely on?” almost half (49.5%) cited customer service scores. This was closely followed by service level and first-call resolution (FCR) rate. Interestingly, respondents that cited first-call resolution doubled from the previous year. This reflects a belief that callers do not just prefer a quick response, they want one that is informative and substantive, so their issue can be resolved without further communication. And if customer satisfaction is tied to ease of service, that’s good news for contact centers, because it is a goal they share as well.

Contact center managers also place a high priority on first-call resolution, because improving that number also reduces business costs. There are a number of ways to reduce FCR, including improved agent training and incentives, but the most important difference-maker is a software system that provides the resources agents and managers need, as well as the analytics to help managers set policies that can also work toward this goal. This is a realization that is also catching on, according to the MCM survey. Last year, 32% of respondents – nearly one out of three – reported that they did not rely on any contact center measurements. That number dropped significantly, to 17.2%, in 2014.