Key performance indicators, or KPIs, are an essential piece of any call center management strategy. KPIs help you manage your workforce and identify areas for improvement at almost every level: individual agents, call queues, and your call center as a whole.
But without clear standards and goals, key performance indicators are really just numbers. You need to make sure that your call center has benchmarks in place so that you can monitor, measure, and strive for further improvements.
In this article, we’ll explore tips for benchmarking call center KPIs so you can learn how to improve every aspect of your call center’s performance.
What is Call Center Benchmarking?
Call center benchmarking is a process used to determine whether or not your call center is achieving peak performance levels. You can choose to benchmark your call center's performance for a selected time period - say, a year - and then choose to set goals that will help you exceed those benchmarks.
You can also look at call center best practices and compare your call center’s performance to that of similar operations in your field.
Choosing the Right Benchmarks for Your Call Center
Now that you understand what benchmarking is and how it works, it’s time to choose which KPIs you wish to benchmark. Start this process by determining what kind of call center you’re running.
If you are running an inbound call center, you will want to benchmark key performance indicators that focus on service level and customer satisfaction. These can include:
- First Call Resolution
- Average Speed of Answer
- Average Hold Time
If you are running an outbound call center, you will want to focus on key performance indicators that target total contacts reached and revenue produced. These can include:
- Average Call Duration
- Schedule Adherence
- Occupancy Rate
Need more help choosing the right KPIs to benchmark? Check out this guide to call center KPIs.
Benchmarking Your Call Center’s Performance
Although it is sometimes difficult to pinpoint industry level benchmarks, the International Financial Corporation (IFC) has compiled a list of global metrics for the most call center KPIs.
Example: if you are trying to improve your call center’s first call resolution (FCR), you can use the IFC’s global metric of 70% - 75% as a benchmark for performance.
Another way to help you benchmark your call center is to take the average performance of a key performance indicator.
Example: if your agents answer, on average, 10 calls an hour, you can make that the benchmark in your call center. This will ensure that lower performing agents keep up with the average number of calls.
Another thing to take into consideration when creating benchmarks is noting where your call center is falling short. Is your average hold time too long? Make the benchmark for this KPI achievable, but also ensure that your agents have to work efficiently to hit their goals.
Call Center Benchmarking: Learn More
As you can see, key performance indicators are a key ingredient in a successful call center. Implementing a benchmark for each KPI will not only help you get the most out of all your call center statistics, it will help you train your call center agents for success.
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