When managing a call centre, you need to know the most effective ways to measure your agent’s performance, productivity and how well they’re satisfying your customers.  Metrics provide a reliable method of tracking key performance indicators (KPIs) and will aid in steering your agents to achieve a common goal for the business. There are many metrics you can use to measure your call centre’s performance, however, some are more important and provide more informative data for you to interpret and implement change accordingly. Here are the top 7 metrics you should consider using to measure your call centre performance. Related Article: Performance Management – 8 Tips To Boost Your Call Centre

The 7 Most Popular Call Centre Metrics to Measure Call Centre Performance are:

  1. Customer Satisfaction (CSAT)
  2. First Call Resolution (FCR)
  3. Average Handle Time (AHT)
  4. Average Speed of Answer (ASA)
  5. Shrinkage
  6. Employee Attrition (Turnover)
  7. Abandonment Rate

1. Customer Satisfaction (CSAT)

This is one of the most important measures of performance in your call centre. You want to provide the best customer experience possible otherwise it’s likely your customers may look elsewhere and buy from your competitor instead of you!

One method to measure Customer Satisfaction in your call centre:

After-call customer surveys – A post-call survey or follow-up email survey asks customers to rate their recent interaction with your call centre.  The advantages of using this form of satisfaction rating is that they are relatively easy to get up and running, it is low cost and it requires no extra data from the customer.  However, there are a couple of disadvantages which may make you rethink whether after-call customer surveys are the best option. The cons are that surveys:

  • Usually, get a low response rate;
  • Low volumes of qualitative data is recorded since usually a score rating between 1-5 is taken;
  • Poor ability to use the qualitative data;
  • Operators at times can choose who to supply a survey to leading to incorrect data;
  • Limited ability to tag feedback;
  • Inability to track other than telephone touchpoints;
  • Limited or no ability to initiate Service Recovery contact

Using Customer Satisfaction (CSAT) metrics to measure customer satisfaction will be highly beneficial to ensure your customer receives a good experience and your call centre is likely to become more efficient and profitable.  

2. First-Call Resolution Rate

As mentioned above, First-Call Resolution (FCR) is a popular and widely used KPI that influences the customer’s experience.  FCR measures agent productivity and effectiveness by calculating the percentage of incoming calls that are resolved entirely on the first instance.  If a customer has to call back numerous times or is handled by too many agents, it will decrease your FCR and customer satisfaction rates. 

You should look at methods to decrease your FCR rate, ensure you:

  • Provide proper training to your agents – If your agents do not have to find out the answer from anyone else and have a solid understanding of the product or service they will be more likely to resolve the issue on the first call.
  • Don’t have strict adherence targets as this can cause agents to rush through their calls before breaks and other off phone activities, which causes the agent to not be as thorough.
  • Empower your agents – Create a culture that your employees want to be a part of. By empowering your agents to do their job well, they will perform better and resolve calls on the first instance more often.

Additional benefits to decreasing your FCR rate include:

  • Decreasing costs – reducing the number of callbacks and time spent on each customer will increase the company’s bottom line.
  • Increase employee engagement – if your agents are well-trained and feel confident with the product or service, they are more likely to be a more engaged employee.

Related Article: 13 Methods for Increasing Employee Engagement Using First-Call Resolution (FCR) to measure how well your call centre is performing  will be beneficial to the bottom line as well as ensuring your employees are engaged.  

3. Average Handle Time (AHT)

Average handle time or AHT is another one of the most important metrics used to measure your call centres’ performance and productivity.  AHT is the average time spent on the phone call from when the agent picks up to when the agent disconnects the call with the customer.  Call centre managers take careful consideration and aim to decrease the AHT due to direct link this metric has to decreasing costs and increasing profitability.  It is important to measure not just how long the agent spent with the customer but also how short the call may be. If the call is too short it may mean the customer has not received enough assistance about the product or service.  Monitoring the call quality is how you can discover whether your agents are delivering the right amount of assistance to your customers. 

Top tips to decrease Average Handle Time (AHT):

  • Automate as many customer interactions as possible (across all media types: email, chat and calls)
  • Ensure your company website has easy to find FAQs to minimise call volumes
  • Cut down after-call work by spending more of the time with the customer
  • Aim to resolve customer queries on the first point of contact
  • Reassess your scripts and cut out any unnecessary information
  • Create cheat sheets to streamline calls with repetitive questions
  • Train your agents by letting them listen to examples of the correct AHT duration

Using AHT to measure how well your agents are providing assistance to your customers is a crucial metric when assessing your call centres performance.  

4. Average Speed of Answer (ASA)

When measuring the productivity of your call centre, one of the best metrics to measure the performance of your agents is the average speed of answer or ASA.  ASA is calculated by dividing Total Wait Time for all Answered Calls by Total Number of Answered Calls.  The lower the ASA, the less time customers spend waiting for their calls to be answered. It is crucial to have a lower ASA because it also lowers the occurrence of the Abandonment Rate and increases the CSAT scores.  

How to decrease Average Speed of Answer (ASA):

  • Better manage your agents by revising your scheduling against forecasts
  • Ensure to utilise the benefits of economies of scale with blending agents where possible
  • Make use of technology by using advanced call routing call centre software
  • Optimise agent training
  • Use queue callback technology
  • Increase opportunities for the customers to self serve to reduce the overall inbound demand

  Average Speed of Answer (ASA) is an essential call centre metric because it fundamentally is about getting a customer’s issues resolved as quickly as possible. Your ASA target should be aligned to your operational and strategic goals. Are your targets working towards achieving these goals or are they unaligned?  

5. Shrinkage

Shinkage is a commonly used metric to measure the time an agent is not contributing towards workload. Shrinkage impacts the overall efficiency of a call centre and needs to be continually monitored and measured to ensure shrinkage can be reduced where possible. Shrinkage can be calculated by summing the total paid time in an activity not contributing towards workload divided by the total paid time.  

Shrinkage calculation includes these factors in time the agents are not available:

  • Training or coaching
  • Meetings
  • Planned leave such as holidays/vacation
  • Unplanned leave such as sick leave
  • Agents running late for work
  • Agent leaving early from work
  • Scheduled paid breaks
  • After-call work

How to reduce shrinkage in your call centre:

  • Use workforce management software (WFM), such as Aspect, to help automate the forecasting process and scheduling by tracking all planned and unplanned shrinkage
  • Utilise call centre software so agents can log when they are on break, taking leave etc
  • Monitor and address absenteeism
  • Introduce an incentive program to motivate employees to reduce shrinkage
  • Ensure shrinkage management in an ongoing process

Related Article: 13 Methods for Increasing Employee Engagement  Because call centre shrinkage directly impacts the productivity of your call centre it is imperative to monitor the rate on a regular basis so that the call centre can reach the business goals of the company.  

6. Employee Attrition Rate (Turnover)

Employee Attrition Rate or Turnover is a commonly used measure that tracks the number of people that leave your contact centre.  There are two types of turnover: staff choosing to leave and staff being asked to leave. 

A high turnover rate has severe impacts on your call centre:

  • Direct impact on revenue and profitability (it’s expensive to hire and train new employees!)
  • Decreased workplace morale
  • Long term effects on company culture
  • Decreased product and/or service quality delivery (productivity)

Reasons for a high turnover rate include:

  • Agents are overworked
  • Unfairness between team members or being mistreated
  • Low salary
  • Minimal outlook for a salary raise in current role
  • Toxic company culture
  • Poor management
  • Minimal career development opportunities
  • Lack of recognition for hard work
  • No work-life balance
  • The role did not meet expectations
  • Bad hiring practices

High turnover is fairly common in the call centre industry however there are ways to help mitigate some of the issues surrounding why an employee leaves a job.  

You can lower your turnover rate by:

  • Ensuring you hire the right people for the job
  • Let people go that aren’t the right fit
  • Recognise and reward your employees
  • Offer flexibility for a better work-life balance
  • Be transparent about employee engagement 
  • Create opportunities for career development
  • Ensure you stick to scheduled performance reviews
  • Create a company culture to be proud of

Your employee attrition rate directly impacts the profitability of your call centre because it is expensive to hire and train new employees. Understanding why your turnover rate is high or low is an important metric when managing any call centre.   

7. Abandonment Rate

Abandonment Rate is the number of customer calls that hang-up before they get connected to an agent.  The Abandonment Rate is calculated by dividing Abandoned Calls by Total Offered Calls. A lower abandon rate indicates a faster rate of answering the call. Abandonment Rate is linked to ASA.

There are several ways to reduce your call centre’s Abandonment Rate:

  • Use a mix of different media types for your customers to contact your call centre (Email, Chat and Call)
  • Inform customers of their estimated wait time
  • Offer virtual queuing so customers can receive a callback when the agent is available
  • Offer self-service over the phone, on the website or via email
  • Play engaging announcements to inform and educate whilst the customer is waiting
  • Use wallboards and team broadcasts to encourage efficiency
  • Reallocate hours so you have enough agents on for busy periods and less agents on for more quiet periods
  • Divert calls to overflow if customers have been waiting too long


About Datagamz Datagamz provides a gamification and analytics platform to help you to track performance and KPIs. It offers a method of incentivising your employees through rewards, quizzes and challenges.  You can make use of technology in a way that it offers the best benefits to your employees whilst also managing performance goals.

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