Contact center KPIs – Top industry standards to know

April 02, 2024

Tracking key performance indicators is essential to determine your contact center’s strong points and to pinpoint which areas need improvement, helping your business utilize their resources wisely and making better decisions.

While most contact center leaders understand the importance of tracking KPIs, it might not always be 100% clear which metrics they should put more emphasis on. To make this process easier, we’re listing some of the most common contact center KPIs, their importance and some rough benchmarks for them.

1. Service level

This metric indicates the number of calls answered within a specified amount of time (usually seconds). Service level needs to be kept low, as it reflects that your team tends to customer needs as soon as possible. Ideally, this metric is displayed in real-time for both agents and contact center managers to see, letting them adjust their approaches if needed. According to a study, 62,7% of contact center leaders see this efficiency metric as their most relevant KPI.


To calculate this metric, you need to divide the total number of answered calls within the specified time set by your contact center by the total number of calls and the total number of abandoned calls. Once you have this number, multiply it by one hundred.

Service level = [ Total calls answered within the threshold    ] * 100
Total calls answered + Total calls abandoned

Industry standard

The most common service level goal is to answer 80% of calls within 20 seconds, although this can vary depending on the industry, the type of calls being handled, and the organization’s specific goals and resources. Some call centers may aim for higher service levels, such as 90% of calls answered within 15 seconds, while others may have lower targets. Ultimately, the service level goal should be set based on factors like customer expectations, call volume, and available staffing.

2. Average Speed of Answer

Not to be confused with Service Level, Average Speed of Answer (ASA) shows the average amount of time it takes for calls to be answered, expressed in seconds. Even when reaching the target service level, it is possible for calls to spend a lot of time in queue, depending on the various metrics of your business. Therefore, it is important to complement service level with ASA, as it represents the experience of individual callers.


Average Speed of Answer is calculated by dividing the total wait time for all answered calls by the total number of calls that were answered by agents.

Average Speed of Answer = Total waiting time for answered calls    
Total number of answered calls

Industry standard

A common benchmark is to aim for an ASA of around 20-30 seconds. This means that on average, callers should wait no longer than 20 to 30 seconds before their call is answered by an agent.

3. Average Handling Time

Like its name suggests, Average Handling Time (AHT) is the amount of time it takes for your operation to handle a call, starting from the initiation of the call to its final resolution, including hold time and talk time.

Industry standard

Most contact centers aim to reduce AHT to as little as possible, making up an industry standard of 6 minutes. However, just like with Service Level, this contact center KPI should be taken flexibly, as it can vary based on the specifics of your company, such as its scale and size, as well as on the sector you are in.

Check out the formula & explore more about this KPI in our comprehensive AHT guide.

4. First Call Resolution

Similarly to Average Speed of Answer, this contact center KPI can be used to measure the experience of individual calls. First Call Resolution (FCR) measures the percentage of calls resolved by your agents within the first interaction with the caller. This means that no follow up call or further interaction is required to solve the issue at hand.

Industry standard

A common benchmark for FCR is to aim for a rate of around 70%-80%. Of course, this number can vary depending on the general complexity of issues handled.

Head over to our call center KPIs library to learn everything you need about FCR.

5. Average Abandonment Rate

This metric measures the percentage of calls disconnected by customers before reaching an agent. It is generally seen as an indicator of how your clients relate to wait times and it can be an indirect indicator of your general customer satisfaction. According to a study conducted by American Express, 67% of customers hang up the phone because they cannot get through to a live agent.

Industry standard

A common benchmark for call abandonment rate is to aim for a rate of around 2%-5%. This means that the goal is to have only 2% to 5% of calls abandoned by callers while waiting in the queue for an available agent. Emergency or crisis response centers, specialized support centers or task-oriented centers may be more lenient regarding call abandonment rates.

Be sure to read our guide helping you understand what abandonment rate is and why it’s so important in a call center.

6. Wrap up time

Call wrap up time, post call processing or after call work refers to the amount of time an agent spends on tasks after the call has been finished with the client. This includes follow-up tasks related to the call, such as setting a callback time, filling out CRM forms and resolving potential issues with their manager.


The formula for wrap-up time in a call center is calculated by dividing the total wrap-up time by the number of calls handled.

Wrap up time = Total wrap up time    
Number of calls handled

Industry standard

A common industry standard for wrap-up time in call centers is typically around 15-30 seconds per call. This time allows agents to complete necessary tasks such as documenting the call, updating customer records, and preparing for the next interaction. Some call centers may have shorter or longer wrap-up times based on their specific requirements and processes.

7. Occupancy rate

Occupancy rate refers to the amount of time that agents work on call related activities. This includes talk, hold, and wrap up time. Measuring this KPI may lead to better resource utilization, increased agent performance and overall higher quality of service.


The occupancy rate is calculated by dividing the total handled time by the total available time minus the total idle time, then multiplying the result by 100%.

Occupancy rate= [ Total handled time    ] * 100
Total available time – Total idle time

Industry standard

A commonly accepted target range for occupancy rate is typically between 80%-85%. This range allows for efficient resource utilization while still providing agents with adequate time to handle interactions effectively without feeling overwhelmed. Higher rates than this mean that your agents have no or very little time between calls, leading to agent burnout and high employee turnover.

8. Net Promoter Score

Net promoter score (NPS) measures customer loyalty to your brand or service. Measured on a 1-10 scale, customers are usually asked the following question after the call: “How likely is it that you would recommend our service to an acquaintance?” The clients are then grouped into: promoters (score of 9 or 10; satisfied and would recommend your business to others), passives (score of 7 to 8; overall satisfied, but do not promote your brand), or detractors (0 to 6; unsatisfied with your services).

Industry standard

Reported between a scale from -100 to +100, the median global industry standard for this KPI is +44. This means that half of companies score below and half score above this rate. 25% of the lowest performers have an NPS score of 0 or lower and 25% of the best performers have a score of 72 or higher. If your company scores below zero, you should start thinking about replanning your customer care strategy.

9. Customer Satisfaction (CSAT)

At the end of the day, the fundamental goal of any contact center is to keep customers happy and satisfied. This is where the customer satisfaction score comes in. According to a recent study, businesses that take the time to take this metric into consideration have a 30-50 percent increase in customer recommendations. This efficiency metric can be optimized by agent training and by improving other related KPIs, such as service level and average handling time.


Your Customer Satisfaction Score can simply be calculated by asking for your clients’ feedback after their interaction with your agents. Simply ask them to share their experience over the phone or in the form of a follow-up email, with questions such as “Were we able to help you with your issue?” or “How pleased were you with your experience?”. The client can then answer on a 1 to 5 scale, from least satisfied to most.

Industry standard

While specific benchmarks may vary across industries and businesses, a commonly targeted standard for customer satisfaction in call centers is to achieve a score of 80% or higher on CSAT surveys.

Discover potential survey questions, practical tips and related KPIs in this in-depth CSAT guide.

10. Average Wait Time (AWT)

Often closely related to a customer’s satisfaction, this call center metric is quite simply the amount of time customers had to wait before speaking to an agent. If you find that customers are waiting in queues for a particularly long time, you can move to address this issue with your team, before it begins to negatively impact customer satisfaction.

Industry standard

The target AWT for phone calls in a contact center is often set between 30 seconds to 1 minute. This means customers ideally spend less than a minute waiting in the queue before being connected to an agent.

For more specific benchmarks, formula and useful tips, head over to our Average Wait Time guide.

11. Percentage of calls blocked

This metric measures the percentage of inbound calls that were met with a busy line, leaving them unable to connect. A high percentage of calls blocked can usually be attributed to a lack of available agents and bad queue configuration. In order to avoid this, make sure that your software is configured to bring out the maximum capacity of your contact center, with features, such as the predictive dialer and techniques, such as skills-based routing.

Remember that this metric should not be ignored. Each blocked call is a missed opportunity for building your relationship with your customers.


To calculate this KPI, divide the number of calls that do not reach agents by the total number of incoming calls, and multiply that number by 100.

Percentage of calls blocked= [ Number of blocked calls    ] * 100
Total number of calls attempted

Industry standard

In general, a call blocking rate of less than 3% is often considered acceptable for most contact centers. In industries where immediate access to customer service is crucial, such as emergency services or healthcare, a lower call blocking rate may be necessary to ensure customer satisfaction and safety. On the other hand, in less time-sensitive industries, a slightly higher call blocking rate may be acceptable.

12. Agent turnover rate

Agent turnover rate shows the rate at which employees (agents) leave a contact center or organization within a specific period, usually calculated on an annual basis. As high attrition rates are one of the top challenges of contact centers, it’s advisable to pay close attention to this metric.

Industry standard

Industry standards for agent turnover rates can vary depending on factors such as the type of industry, the region, and the specific circumstances of the contact center. However, in many industries, an average annual agent turnover rate of around 20% -30% is considered typical.

Check out our guide on agent turnover rate to learn a lot more about this KPI.

13. Cost per call

Cost per call in a contact center refers to the average expense incurred by the organization for handling each customer interaction. This metric encompasses various elements such as agent wages, technology costs (like phone systems and software), training expenses, facilities overhead, and any other operational costs associated with managing incoming or outgoing calls.


The cost per call is determined by dividing the total operational costs incurred by the contact center over a specific period by the total number of calls handled during that same period.

Cost per call = Total operational costs    
Total number of calls

Industry standard

As a rough benchmark, the average cost per call typically ranges from $4 to $8 USD. This range can fluctuate based on geographic location, type of calls, technology and infrastructure and quality of service.


Many contact centers struggle in being able to track and analyze their top metrics correctly. A relevant example is one of the largest and most renowned websites for booking accommodation in Hungary. One of the reasons why Szallas picked VCC Live’s contact center platform was the complete flexibility in tracking KPIs for their agent helping to better understand the team’s performance. Read’s case study to learn more.

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