Tips to Increase First Contact Resolution rate of Your Phone Call Support Services

A brand or company can be said to deliver seamless customer service when very few customers are reaching out for assistance from its customer support department.

True, the first line of this write-up sounds like an overstatement but a deeper analysis leaves you confirms the fact that; a customer won’t contact a business when everything is done right from the word go.

Many times a shopper will call a company for failing to meet their expectations in terms of service delivery or product quality.

But a perfect customer experience is not always the case for the retailer; mistakes happen and when they do, your consumer support department should step in to address the shopper’s concerns.

A  customer care crew can receive complains through numerous pre-determined channels like emails, live chat, issuing self-help resources, helpdesk services, the long-standing phone calls and more.

Today we focus on the best set of practices to ensure your support agents can resolve customer issue during the first interaction, hence the term “first contact resolution.”

Resolution time is a concern because it impacts the quality of your customer service; and determines whether a shopper walks away annoyed or is impressed by your support. CX aside, a business must handling hundreds or thousands of complaints per day must be proactive; slow responses may slow down your support operations.

That’s why First Contact Resolution is a bone of contention. The idea behind it is; if a buyer issues are solved during the first interaction then they won’t need to make a follow-up call and everybody wins— the customer is happy and the business can handle other shopper issues.

Defining FCR? 

MetricNet defines it as “the percentage of first contacts resolved on the service desk on the first interaction with customers. For live calls or chats, it means the shoppers concerns are addressed before they end the call or chat.”

FCR gauges the rate at which a business’s customer service team solves buyer issues within the first interaction they make. If your rates are high, it’s means you are cutting down on costs and saving time.

 Ways to Increase Your FCR rate

 1. Gauge Customer Call Experience

The call-receiving section of your customer support team can mine a lot of data that can prove useful in improving FCR.

Collecting and analyzing data related to customer experience can help you decide on the best practices and interventions to boost you FCR.

These include data like customer satisfaction scores, Call times, Churn percentage and NPS or net promoter score.

2. Agent Training is a Must! 

Agent training is key when it comes to customer care. All call-receiving agents must be competent enough to handle most, if not all customer complaints.

In many cases FCR is not successful because the agents have not undergone adequate training.

Your call-receiving team should be receive adequate training on phone etiquette and best phone conversation practices. It should also be knowledgeable about your products or service and be in a position to respond to common as well as technical customer issues.

Set aside a budget for thorough agent training and remember; a savvy customer-service team can boost up FCR.

3. Insist on Clear Agent-Customer Communication.

Half-finished or wrong info always leads to a follow-up call. Shoppers will reach out to inquire more if an agent does not explain everything (in detail) to the customer.

First-class companies know this, and most of them insist on detailed communication. It matters not only in customer service, but also in compliance and ensuring your business is not misrepresented.

Train your agents to give step by step guidance and exhaust everything a customer may want to know about the issue. If you do so, you reduce the chances of a shopper calling again and again because their problem has not been solved.

Again, accuracy is key because inaccurate information is worse than incomplete info. In some cases it may look like you are trying to deceive a buyer and lead to tainted brand name.

4. Provide Agents with the Right Resources. 

Today’s customer care relies on a wide range of tools. These resources help your team of competent call receivers do their job without a hassle.

They streamline the phone call procedure and ease the process of resolving the buyer’s concerns. Without the right tools, even your adequately-trained team cannot deliver the best results.

Studies have found that the support agent’s major concern with their organization’s tools is that the solutions are slow (45 percent) and they don’t give access to all of the info needed to resolve shopper issues (38 percent).

So you will need to provide other solutions like live chat software, CRM systems and a knowledge base. All these can play a critical role in increasing your FCR rate.

5. Seek Customer feedback from Agents 

Because your agents deal with customers first hand, they have a better idea of customer problems and their phone call support expectations.

Shoppers open up to agents because they believe they are speaking directly to your business.

If you can listen to agent feedback and analyze each of them you can find some reasonable ways to increase your call room’s first contact resolution rates significantly.

Quality improvement begins with problem identification, and agents are an excellent way to learn some of your untold customer concerns.

6. Pay attention to Call Types that lead to follow-up Discussions 

It is your duty to find out which kinds of calls often escalate to further issues instead of ending in a resolutions.

If you notice some common complains that lead to follow-up discussions then means you’re not offering enough help with your customer service.

Maybe you are not providing detailed self-help resources, or your agents have not been updated on some changes in your services or products, it could be anything.

And the best way to understand why some phone calls frequent your call room is listening to customer problems.

In a nutshell, paying attention to recurring and escalating customer issues can help you notice weaknesses in you customer service.

Final Words

First contact resolution is the dream of any customer service department. FCR is applicable in all other channels like live chat support, email support and more. The idea is to ensure that you solve the customer’s problem during the first interaction.

Failure to do so leads to follow-ups which ruins buyer-business relationship, customer experience, wastes your time and is an expensive way to resolve shopper issues.

But the above practices can help you weather all these storms and ensure you fix issues in the first interaction.