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How to Improve the Performance of the Contact Center

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How to Improve the Performance of the Contact Center

From David Burnie’s company blog, an article that identifies the best KPI to track contact center utilization. 

Tracking utilization in the contact center is a key to companies remaining competitive. By improving contact center utilization, companies can improve customer service and satisfaction, reduce operating costs, increase employee engagement, and grow top-line revenue.

It is important to define utilization and understand the activities that drive it to achieve and maintain improved results. This article will share why the customer assistance ratio is a significant metric for tracking contact center utilization.

Defining utilization in a contact center

A frontline employee’s primary task is handling customer interactions. This is where the frontline employee adds value to the company. Therefore, when measuring utilization in a contact center, we focus primarily on interactions between customers and frontline employees. However, this is not the only area contributing to an efficient contact center environment, as we will explain later.

Burnie Group has developed a proprietary metric called the customer assistance ratio (CAR) to reflect the utilization of a contact center. The CAR represents how much paid frontline employee time is spent handling customer calls. The calculation is:

Customer Assistance Ratio (CAR) = Total Handle Time ÷ Paid Agent Time

CAR is an effective metric to track utilization over time. A consistently high CAR is also an effective indicator of a successful contact center. A higher CAR correlates with higher employee engagement. This makes sense as engaged employees often have lower absenteeism, lower attrition, and take fewer unsanctioned breaks.

While reducing training and meetings and increasing occupancy can temporarily increase a CAR, these methods generally result in increased absenteeism, attrition, and unsanctioned breaks that offset any short-term gains. While the decrease in CAR may be gradual, the overall impact on utilization, quality, and throughput are significant.

Key points include:

  • How frontline employees spend their time
  • Banking and insurance benchmarks
  • Customer assistance ratio

Read the full article, Why Customer Assistance Ratio is the Best KPI to Track Contact Center Utilization, on BurnieGroup.com.

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