FCR, or First Contact Resolution, is an essential element for the efficient and effective functioning of a call center. What are his methods? What does the implementation and observation of the FCR indicator give you and what challenges await customer service in the first contact?

FCR indicator – Why and for Whom?

First Call Resolution is an indicator whose measurability works to the benefit of both the company and the consumer. The use of its measurement capabilities undoubtedly optimizes costs and responds to the needs of customers. Research conducted by the Ascent group shows that there is a strong correlation between FCR and customer satisfaction. Reliable and competent solution to the customer’s problems in the first contact with the minimum amount of time and sufficient customer involvement defines the validity of the indicator.

Competence and Efficiency Versus Speed of the Service

The FCR indicator is an example of a tool that fits perfectly into the lean management principles of any company. Experts from the American company Forrester-1 examined that for 69% of respondents, the priority is to solve the problem as quickly as possible and to limit contact to a conversation with one consultant. According to the report, as many as 71% of customers do not like multiple connections and, consequently, failure to meet their expectations.

The basic issue of FCR is the selection of an appropriate method on the basis of which the quality of service work will be measured and a specific level of customer satisfaction achieved. It is worth noting that the measurement of effectiveness is so troublesome as it depends on the specificity of the industry, the type of services offered by the company or individual product distribution options.

Methods of Working on FCR

FCR is most often presented as the ratio of customer notifications resolved in the first contact to all notifications received by us and multiplied by 100%:

In order to obtain the highest possible FCR result, it is worth considering the improvement of the customer service process by implementing a number of innovative technologies. The most effective are:

1. Skills-based routing, i.e. call queuing according to consultants’ skills, is a function thanks to which the client will be redirected to a specific consultant, depending on the subject of the problem.

2. IVR, or Interactive Voice Response, is a system of voice announcements, thanks to which the consumer decides whether to connect with a specific service department.

3. Contact history, i.e. a database of information about a specific client and the issues that have been solved for him so far.

4. Relationship support is an action that redirects the client to the consultant with whom he has spoken before. In this way, it is possible to quickly solve the problem that bothers consumers.

FCR – Challenges

The greatest challenge of First Call Resolution is to optimize the contact center service time so that the level of customer satisfaction continues to increase. Therefore, in order to maintain the FCR level at a high position, it is important to train employees on the procedures for meeting customer needs, analyzing specific examples and raising awareness of the importance of the indicator.

To meet the challenges posed by FCR, a good solution is, among others preparation of a knowledge base for both contact center employees (catalog with a diagram of the procedure) and consumers (FAQ).

In the call center industry, there are many factors that can be used to measure their parameters, but the most important conclusion is to achieve the highest possible consumer satisfaction while minimizing operating costs. By eliminating the need for repeated information by the customer, multiple contact with the company, switching between consultants and impersonal treatment, the effort of consumers is minimized. Only a personalized form of communication with the client is able to maximize his satisfaction, thus increasing the efficiency and effectiveness of service.

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