Cookie Preference Centre

Your Privacy
Strictly Necessary Cookies
Performance Cookies
Functional Cookies
Targeting Cookies

Your Privacy

When you visit any web site, it may store or retrieve information on your browser, mostly in the form of cookies. This information might be about you, your preferences, your device or used to make the site work as you expect it to. The information does not usually identify you directly, but it can give you a more personalized web experience. You can choose not to allow some types of cookies. Click on the different category headings to find out more and change our default settings. However, you should know that blocking some types of cookies may impact your experience on the site and the services we are able to offer.

Strictly Necessary Cookies

These cookies are necessary for the website to function and cannot be switched off in our systems. They are usually only set in response to actions made by you which amount to a request for services, such as setting your privacy preferences, logging in or filling in forms. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site may not work then.

Cookies used

Performance Cookies

These cookies allow us to count visits and traffic sources, so we can measure and improve the performance of our site. They help us know which pages are the most and least popular and see how visitors move around the site. All information these cookies collect is aggregated and therefore anonymous. If you do not allow these cookies, we will not know when you have visited our site.

Cookies used

Google Analytics

Functional Cookies

These cookies allow the provision of enhance functionality and personalization, such as videos and live chats. They may be set by us or by third party providers whose services we have added to our pages. If you do not allow these cookies, then some or all of these functionalities may not function properly.

Cookies used




Targeting Cookies

These cookies are set through our site by our advertising partners. They may be used by those companies to build a profile of your interests and show you relevant ads on other sites. They work by uniquely identifying your browser and device. If you do not allow these cookies, you will not experience our targeted advertising across different websites.

Cookies used


This site uses cookies and other tracking technologies to assist with navigation and your ability to provide feedback, analyse your use of our products and services, assist with our promotional and marketing efforts, and provide content from third parties


Here are some suggested Connections for you! - Log in to start networking.

Contact Center Metrics ARE Customer Experience Metrics - FCR - Blog

Contact Center Metrics ARE Customer Experience Metrics

This article was originally published on the ICMI Blog on March 29, 2018. Click here to read the original.

We’re rapidly approaching three years since I joined FCR as Head of Quality. Upon joining, I was tasked with a couple of key objectives. The first was to gauge our quality performance across all of our programs and the second was to be a thought leader in the customer experience space — working to promote best practices in our approach to customer satisfaction (CSAT) survey results and share valuable insights with clients.

Initially, I tried my darndest to keep those two activities in their separate siloes. I’m not sure what spurned on a change, but somewhere in there I compared quality and CSAT results for our various programs. This is a fairly natural comparison given that they are both percentages. I found a number of programs where quality and CSAT were within just a few percentage points of each other and then there were others with a much larger gap. The most alarming were those with high-quality scores but low CSAT — especially if you view quality as the company’s gauge of the customer experience and CSAT as the customer’s gauge. That would mean our view of how we’re doing doesn’t necessarily align with the customer’s.

Sponsor message - content continues below this message

2022 '17th annual' Global Contact Center World Awards NOW OPEN

Enter your Center, Strategy, Technology Innovation, Teams and Individuals into the ONLY TRULY GLOBAL awards program - regarded by many as being like the Olympics for the Contact Center World! Join the best from over 80 nations and compete for the most prestigious awards out there!


Content continues ….

I think we can agree that CSAT (or NPS or Customer Effort) are clearly customer experience metrics because customers are responding to those surveys based on their experience. But how many would list quality assurance, a standard contact center metric, as a customer experience metric? What about average handle time, service level, or agent attrition? In the modern contact center, these ARE customer experience metrics. Let’s look at them individually, and I’ll show you why.

Average Handle Time (AHT)

I do my best to join #ICMIChat every Tuesday, and I’m only slightly exaggerating when I say that a least once per week someone bangs on the idea of holding agents accountable to a specific AHT goal for phone and chat conversations. For email support, you might instead be looking at emails sent per hour if you don’t have a system to track email handle time and that’s similar enough.

Here’s the deal with AHT. If it’s too long OR too short, you may be looking at a customer experience problem. Too short and there’s a good chance agents are rushing through interactions without giving customers a complete solution, requiring that they turn right around and call support again. Too long is often an indicator of an agent who’s not fully proficient and they’re fumbling around with the tools or leaving customers on hold for inordinate amounts of time while they seek answers from others on the contact center floor.

The modern contact center always views AHT in balance with the customer experience and aims for a healthy AHT where well-trained, empowered agents are giving customers complete, thorough answers as efficiently as possible.

Service Level

Service level is our commitment to customers to answer or respond in a certain amount of time. From the business standpoint, it’s tempting to manage to a support budget and scoff at the price tag associated with improving service levels. Here are some ideas for a more customer-centric approach beyond just hiring more people:

  • Empower and equip existing agents to be more efficient and escalate fewer issues. Use AI to augment agent performance as it makes sense.
  • Emphasize doing what it takes to solve customer issues on the first contact to minimize repeat contacts.
  • Boost self-help opportunities, so less customers have to contact support in the first place. Most customers don’t want to call anyway. It’s OK to explore artificial intelligence, especially when it uses machine learning to help customers find the right answer faster.
  • Use the native queue callback feature in your phone system or a third-party system to improve the wait experience for customers and even out spikes in call volume.

The modern contact center no longer sees service level merely as a staffing issue but instead takes a holistic approach to improving the customer’s experience with self-help, adding efficiencies when customers do speak with agents, and if necessary, improving the wait experience.

Agent Attrition

While my wife is really supportive of my life as a contact center geek, I was still taken aback when she recently messaged me this Richard Branson quote on Facebook:

“Clients do not come first. Employees come first. If you take care of your employees, they will take care of your clients.”

I think we’ve all heard variations of this quote from different business leaders. It’s funny, and a little sad, that this is mind-blowing advice for the traditional contact center — but it is. How often do we look for an easy fix for attrition like adding incentives or games? And how often do we resign ourselves to simply hiring enough agents to outpace the attrition? We can do so much better.

What if we look at some of the following when it comes to agent attrition?

  • Rather than constantly ratcheting up agent occupancy rate (percentage of time busy working), we seek a balance.
  • Let’s focus one-on-one conversations not just on whether or not our agents hit their numbers, but let’s also show them we care about them as humans and think about their continued development.
  • Ask agents what frustrates them most about the customer experience and really listen to what they say. Perhaps they have a billion windows open on their computer and supporting one customer is more complex than it needs to be. Or maybe they are dealing with the same customer issue over and over again, and they’re tired of getting yelled at by customers. Listen to agent feedback and make improvements to their experience and the customer experience at the same time.

The modern contact center approaches attrition by focusing on the development and engagement of their agents, listening to their concerns, and consistently making improvements.


I touched on quality in the beginning but let’s come back to it for a moment. The traditional contact center has a quality form that’s a checklist of everything agents need to accomplish on every customer interaction. It’s often tempting for agents to focus on hitting all of their objectives rather than making rich connections with customers and little thought is given to the customer’s perception of the process.

Let’s instead try the following with our quality process:

  • Add customer satisfaction to your quality forms. Ask your quality auditors to put themselves in the customer’s shoes and evaluate whether or not they would have been satisfied with the experience. If the agent did everything right and the customer was still dissatisfied, the form might not be measuring the right things, and/or there’s a policy or product issue that needs to be addressed.
  • Step back and compare quality scores to customer satisfaction scores. If they aren’t both consistently high and continuously improving, dig deeper to find out why not.
  • Consider paring your 30 question form down to the 10 MOST important questions with the focus on allowing your auditors to review more interactions and spend more time coaching and developing agents.

The modern contact center understands that the purpose of quality is not just to measure compliance. It’s also to constantly ensure that the behaviors we’re tracking align with a great customer experience and promote the coaching and development of agents.

The modern contact center understands that many, if not all, metrics are customer experience metrics — or at least they should be viewed through the lens of the customer experience. My challenge to you as a modern contact center leader is to pick a metric, any metric, and think about how you can manage it to improve your customer experience.


Publish Date: May 3, 2018 5:00 AM

2021 Buyers Guide Translation Services

OpsTel Services

Platform Data Transformation
OpsTel is proud to provide our clients with a software automation service that is used to aid in the transition from one platform to another utilizing both speed and accuracy. Whether it is going from premises to premises, premises to cloud, premises to private cloud or even a hybrid deployment; OpsTel has the ability to help cut your transition time so you can focus your efforts on remaining architecture priorities.

We’ve observed conversions as high as 85% - in as little time as 30-minutes - with remaining client specific complex integrations being done by employees or professional services of your choice leveraging our Platform Data Transformation™ solution.

Features include:

(read more)

Tru29 Outsource Solutions Inc.

Back Office Solutions
Although the customer-facing type of tasks is essential to good customer experience, tasks being done in the background is as important.

Tru29 has been providing this type of outsourcing solutions to various businesses across the globe so you can be assured of a reliable and experienced workforce.

View more from FCR

Recent Blog Posts:
When Friendly Customer Service is SecondaryFebruary 20, 2019 5:00 AM
Customer Service Edge Cases. To Empower or Not to Empower?January 18, 2019 5:00 AM
FCR Solutions Spotlight: 5 Contact Center Tech Upgrades to Consider in 2019January 11, 2019 5:00 AM
How Chat Analytics Differs from Voice AnalyticsJanuary 3, 2019 5:00 AM
Sad and Happy GoodbyesDecember 21, 2018 5:00 AM
Creating A Customer Service Quality Assurance Form Doesn’t Have To Be Scary (Here’s How)December 14, 2018 5:00 AM
A Miscellaneous Lot of Thoughts on Quality ScoringDecember 10, 2018 5:00 AM
7 Essentials for a Customer Service Voice and Style GuideNovember 29, 2018 5:00 AM
The Customer Service Advice We’re Thankful ForNovember 21, 2018 5:00 AM
Customer Experience Insights From the InnovatorsNovember 15, 2018 5:00 AM

About us - in 60 seconds!

Industry Champion Award Leaderboard

Most active award (top 10) entrants in the past 48 hours! - Vote for Others / About Program

Latest Americas Newsletter
both ids empty
session userid =
session UserTempID =
session adminlevel =
session blnTempHelpChatShow =
session cookie set = True
session page-view-total =
session page-view-total =
applicaiton blnAwardsClosed =
session blnCompletedAwardInterestPopup =
session blnCheckNewsletterInterestPopup =
session blnCompletedNewsletterInterestPopup =