First call resolution – top mistakes to avoid

August 03, 2018

One of the most important metrics a call center can measure is its first call resolution rate, which shows whether or not a customer’s need is properly addressed for the first time by the customer service team.

First call resolution (FCR) is the main indicator of customer satisfaction, which as we all know, is the backbone of any successful call center.

Amongst other things, a proper first call resolution rate will definitely help you improve customer satisfaction and reduce operational costs. But there are some common mistakes that can seriously hurt FCR. Check out our article and make sure your call center is not committing these mistakes.

Customers put on hold for too long

In this fast-paced world, the last thing customers want to do is to wait too long on a customer service line for help that (many times) never arrives. It’s no surprise that too long waiting lines can easily result in customers getting frustrated and hanging up the phone.

In brief, we can safely say that putting customers on hold for too long is the worst you can do to your customer service reputation.

There may be several reasons behind long waiting lines, and the first thing you’ll need to do here is to analyze the situation.

Do your agents put your customer on hold because they need to look up information? Then ensure that all information is properly organized and easily available to them. Also, make sure to provide your agents with proper training materials, and allow them to gain access to these materials anytime.

Furthermore, as mentioned in a previous article, implementing self-service options – such as a knowledge base or FAQ –  can help you reduce your support queries as customers will be able to find the information they need instead of dialing your customer service line.

Inconsistent support channels hurt first call resolution

For several years now, everyone has been talking about omnichannel customer service, and for good reason: more and more businesses are recognizing that customer journeys today begin on one channel and end on a completely different platform.

In fact, these days customers can pick from phone, email, SMS or web chat, and this omnichannel communication allows businesses to personalize their customer service by letting customers communicate via their preferred platform.

When it comes to omnichannel communication, the biggest challenge businesses need to overcome is to deliver consistent level of customer service across these channels. Indeed, a major mistake many businesses commit is that they want to be present on several channels, but are unable to perform equally well on all of them.

Instead, they keep transferring customers to other channels, hoping that the agents for those channels will be able to better resolve their issues. By doing this, however, you’re really hurting your first call resolution metrics.

Our advice is to try and focus on the channels your customers use the most and always make sure to provide the same quality of customer service on these channels. You’ll see that consistent quality support will skyrocket your first call resolution rate. 

Unqualified agents

In our customer-centric business environment, keeping customers happy has to be high up on the list of priorities for any business that aims to grow.

As first call resolution helps you keep your customers happy, it’s in your best interest to constantly increase these numbers. The success of your customer service, however, greatly depends on the performance of your call center agents.

As we all know, unqualified agents won’t be able to help your customers, which will lead to poor customer experience. So, in brief, if your agents are not properly trained, then you can be pretty sure that your first call resolution will suffer greatly.

Our tip here is to allocate enough time to train your call center agents properly. Never force them into situations they are unable to handle, and give them plenty of time to learn their duties and get comfortable in their role.

Furthermore, always make sure to provide your agents with valuable feedback. As we already mentioned in a previous article, valuable feedback allows agents to improve their performance, and thus better serve your customers.

First time resolution can definitely boost your call center’s efficiency while reducing operational costs. Make sure to follow our tips and ensure your call center is keeping this important metric high.

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