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The Top 4 Support Team Metrics You Need to Track

Written by: Kole Bourdeau

Discover why customer support teams are critical for organizations and the 4 support team metrics that can help you evaluate your teams' performance. Learn what impacts those metrics and what steps you can take to improve your team’s performance.

Successful companies understand how critical customer satisfaction is to business success. And in a competitive marketplace, where consumers have plenty of options, customer service can be the thing that makes your business stand out.

But first, to elevate your customer service and support teams, you need to understand the numbers.

It’s easy to get buried in data and numbers,so here we’ll keep it simple and dive into four customer service KPI and metrics that will help you keep a pulse on team performance, spot issues and find ways to improve agent performance.

The Role Customer Support Plays in Business Success

Today's customers value service greatly when purchasing and re-purchasing a product or service. A customer is four times more likely to switch brands if they have a service issue rather than an issue with a product or price.

Customers want to know they will receive quality support when they need it. In this way, customer service teams are critical to retaining customers, building trust, and maximizing profits.

What Are Customer Support Metrics and KPIs

Customer support metrics are figures or statistics that help you track the performance of customer support agents and teams. Similarly, KPIs is a type of metric considered critical to the success and achievement of a company’s strategic goals.

Related: Top Sales Metrics and KPIs Your Team Should Be Tracking In 2023

Why Is It Important To Track Metrics of Customer Service

You can determine whether your support and customer success teams are performing effectively by tracking customer service metrics. Use these metrics to get your team up to par with meeting department or company standards of SLAs (service level agreements).

But It's not just about looking at how the whole team is doing. These metrics will also allow you to hone in and gauge the competence and performance of individual agents. If you notice your team isn’t meeting targets, you should focus on individual agent performance and work with them to improve.

When looking at the grand scheme, its easy to get lost in the weeds and not focus on the small things that need to be addressed. The big focus for us supervisors and managers when looking at metrics is to determine where we can provide training or assistance to resolve issues.

Which Metrics and KPIs Should Support Teams Track

It can be overwhelming to review numbers and stats, especially if you have many of them. The following four customer support metrics are the ones that help me keep my team on track.

The metrics you need to track might look a little different based on your business or industry or your specific customer's expectations.

Whichever metrics you measure, collecting and tracking your call data consistently is important. This way, you can refer to historical data and show agents where they might be underperforming.

1. Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT)

What Is CSAT?

This score indicates how happy customers are with the level of support they receive.

Why Is CSAT Important To Measure?

This metric is a key performance indicator for most support teams and tells you how well your service or support team is doing. It can help determine if your team members meets customers' expectations and provides efficient, effective, and helpful service.

CSAT is a critical metric, as poor customer satisfaction can negatively impact retention, brand reputation and, ultimately, your organization's bottom line. A survey found that 50% of consumers will switch to a competitor after only one bad experience and 80% if there is more than one bad experience.

How Do You Measure And Calculate CSAT?

CSAT = [ Number Of Positive Responses / Total Number of Responses] x 100

You can measure customer satisfaction through post-support surveys that ask about the customer's experience with the support team. You can select whatever scale you like, such as rating service from 1-5, 1-10, or 'very dissatisfied' to 'very satisfied.'

Use your results and compare your customer satisfaction score to historical performance or industry benchmarks.

How To Interpret your CSAT Results?

Positive responses will indicate that your team is performing well.

However, it may be necessary to improve certain areas if you receive negative responses. Typically low customer satisfaction scores can be attributed to:

  • Amount of time they wait.

  • Unresolved support request.

  • Multiple calls to resolve issues.

  • Average resolution time or reply time.

How Can You Improve CSAT Scores?

  • Customer-Focused Conversations: It’s essential to listen to your customer's issues and take the time to understand their needs. In our team, we try and make sure that, first and foremost, we're communicators before problem solvers.

  • Go The Extra Mile And Communicate: One of our agents would frequently get 5 out of 5 stars accompanied by lengthy written reviews. She received praise from customers for going the extra mile to help them and for providing consistent communication and follow-up. By doing so, she gave customers the confidence that their issue was being taken seriously.

  • Follow Up And Learn From Low Scores: At net2phone our customer CSAT score is consistently around 4.9 on 5. If we receive any scores less than 3 on 5, we follow up immediately. We want people to know that we are looking at and listening to customer satisfaction surveys. This ensures that clients feel heard while collecting valuable feedback to use in training.

  • Automate Processes: Use integrations to connect your business phone system to your CRM. This way, you can more effectively personalize service and streamline the tools that your agents need to use.

  • Review Your Data: Keep track of related metrics like average call wait time, average answer speed, and specific agent stats. We use our company’s analytics tools to create performance dashboards to keep track. We also download call data into Google sheets for analysis and reporting.

  • Training: If you are experiencing issues with customer service scores, you can use your business phone systems call recording feature to assess the quality of conversations and see where additional training may be necessary.

Related: 6 Phone System Integrations to Make Work Easier

2. Call Abandon Rate

What Is Call Abandon Rate?

Call abandonment rate is the percentage of inbound callers that hang up before an agent answers the call.

Why Is Call Abandonment Rate Important to Track?

This metric is critical for measuring the efficiency and success of the call center. Long waiting times will inevitably result in dissatisfied customers.

How Do You Measure And Calculate Call Abandonment Rate?

Call Abandonment Rate = [ Number of inbound calls - Number of calls abandoned in X seconds or less - Number of successfully handled calls / Number of inbound calls - Number of calls abandoned in X seconds or less ] x 100

Understanding the difference between adjusted and non-adjusted metrics becomes essential here. Adjusted abandoned rates set the minimum time required for a call to be considered as abandoned.

For instance, you might want to remove calls that were abandoned within the first 30 seconds from your calculation. A customer who hangs up in less than thirty seconds may have simply dialed the wrong number or decided to call back at a time that works better for them. Consider if these types of calls are valuable to track as abandoned or if they should be removed from the stat.

How to Interpret Your Call Abandonment Results?

What is considered an acceptable call abandonment rate will depend on your industry, business and sector. Generally, however, a call abandonment rate of 5%-10% is considered acceptable.

A high call abandonment rate could indicate:

  • Callers are on hold for too long.

  • Inadequate number of agents available.

  • Long handle times.

How Can You Improve Call Abandonment Rate?

  • Analyze the numbers: Collect call data and use call analytics to see what periods, times frame, or days of the week you’re having a higher volume of calls to ensure adequate staff with the right skill set.

  • Inform Customers of Wait Times: Be transparent about wait times and call volume so that customers know what to expect.

  • Use Call Back Options: Give your customers the option to request a call back if agents are unavailable.

  • Maximize Call Routing Strategy: Use your business phone’s call routing feature to direct callers to the correct department or queue. This will allow you to speed up response times and increase chances of a first call resolution.

  • Adjust your Agents Wrap up Time: Wrap up time removes the agent from a queue for a specified time after they’ve finished a call to allow a moment to catch their breath. While your newer agents may need a higher wrap up time your senior agents may still be comfortable with a lower time. Speak with your agents and find a system that is both comfortable for them and efficient.

Related: 3 Call Routing Strategies And When To Use Them

3. Agent Availability

What is Agent Availability?

Agent availability tells you the percentage of time that agents are available and ready to take calls.

Why Is Agent Availability Important to Track?

Agent availability is a good indicator of whether you have enough agents to handle customer calls.

It is also an incredibly important metric to see if agents are dealing with too many calls and whether they are overburdened or burned out. Stress and turnover are common and costly occurrences in call center environments.

How to Calculate Agent Availability?

Agent Availability = [ Total Time Spent Waiting On A Call / Total Agent Time Worked Excluding Planned Downtime ] x 100

How to Interpret your Agent Availability Results?

While it may be tempting to think of high agent availability as a good thing, this isn’t necessarily the case. There can be an expectation to have your agents logged in all the time, but that’s not optimal or productive. They need to be able to log off so they can work proactively.

Other stats can also indicate issues with agent availability. This includes:

  • Call Answered

  • Calls Missed

  • Calls Rejected

  • Total Talk Time

For example, if you notice that an agent has high missed call stats, you can investigate how many cases that agent gets through and how many they currently have open. Then look at their availability. If it’s an hour lower than someone who has fewer cases, this could indicate that they’re struggling with existing cases.

How To Improve Agent Availability?

  • Manage Staffing: By ensuring not all agents are logged in and dealing with customer requests at the same time, we allow some agents to work on cases while others are logged in.

  • Give Agents Flexibility: If an agent is backed up in cases or struggling to stay up to date, we like to give them the means to log out. As a manager, I will jump into the queue if necessary.

Related: How Tech Support Managers Use net2phone Canada to Solve Tickets Faster

4. Call Volume

What is Call Volume?

Call volume is the number of incoming calls handled by the call center over a period of time.

Why is Call Volume Important?

Call volume is an important metric to track as it will help you determine the correct number of agents to meet customer needs and manage agents' workloads. A spike in call volume without adequate staffing can lead to long hold times, abandoned calls, inefficient service, stressed agents, and low customer satisfaction.

How to Measure Call Volume?

Call Volume = The Number Of Handled Calls

How to Interpret your Call Volume Results?

When your actual call volume exceeds your predicted call volume, it likely means that your agents are having difficulty keeping up and cannot effectively handle calls.

A 10-percent call volume increase over normal levels is generally considered high. For small to medium-sized call centers, this figure can be much higher.

High call volumes can be caused by the following:

  • Seasonality: Call volumes may be higher during specific seasons, like holidays.

  • Service Outage: When your service is down or interrupted, this will raise your call volume.

  • Common Questions: Agents can recieve too many calls from customers with common or frequently asked questions.

How to Improve High Call Volume?

  • Provide self-help resources: at net2phone, we’ve created a knowledge database of self-help articles that customers can access online 24/7. This way, customers can look up their issues and reduce the need to call.

  • Understand when spikes occur: Analyze your call center data to see when you’re experiencing high call volumes and how your call center is responding in those times. You can then create an accurate forecast of your staffing needs.

Related: Top 9 VoIP Features to Improve Your Customer Journey

Final Thoughts: Agents, Tools and Training Make the Difference

Customer satisfaction begins with your agents' performance and their overall satisfaction. Your metrics will provide a window into opportunities to train your reps better, provide additional support, and implement tools and processes to make their work more manageable and less stressful. By diving into your metrics, you can shape exceptional support agents that make your customers happy.

If you’d like to get started with a unified communications solution but aren’t sure where to start, download our step-by-step guide which will take you through the process of choosing the right vendor and features for greater business success.

About the Author

Kole Bourdeau | Support Manager

Guitar enthusiast and rock climber, Kole, is our leader when it comes to anything and everything related to customer support. We know exactly how busy support centers can become, but having Kole lead the way helps maintain the utmost customer care when our clients are in need of fast technical support and problem solutions. As he leads our team of support agents, he carefully dissects the information provided and crafts specialized solutions to tackle even the largest of technical difficulties, all while keeping your net2phone Canada service running as smoothly as possible.