When it comes to measuring the success of your customer
service operation choosing the right set of metrics is
essential. By creating a Balanced Scorecard made up of your most
important deliverables you will be able to track your clients' satisfaction and report
stakeholders’ key success factors.
The Balanced Scorecard was created by Harvard Business School
Professor Robert Kaplan and Renaissance Solutions President
David Norton and includes financial and non-financial
The scorecard aims to align key performance indicators (KPIs) with the
organization's strategy, keep management informed of business
operations, enable communication and understanding of goals at
all levels and facilitate feedback and learning.
To get started you need to identify the metrics that are most
important to your stakeholders. To do this you will need to
understand the goals and objectives of your organization. By
keeping these metrics at a high level they will be of interest
to senior executives.
At an operational level you may want to create a process map
which clearly identifies not only customer touch points, but
internal ones to. You will then be able to incorporate your key
Here are some examples of customer service metrics at an
operational level in a contact centre.
Average handle time, average talk time, average whole time,
agent productivity, rework, number of escalations, agent
turnover, schedule adherence, case management time, first call
resolution rate or FCR, time to resolution.
Obviously these operational metrics need to be customized for
your business. In addition to call centre or contact centre
performance measurement, other useful metrics can include number
of complaints received, complaint handling time, on-time
delivery success, number of damages and returns, number of
Do not over focus on measuring quantity when it comes to call
time. A mistake that some managers often make is to measure the
call 'wrap up' time. It's not always the best policy to keep
incoming calls as short as possible. Sometimes long calls build
the best customer rapport and result in more loyal customers.
One company that doesn't focus on call time is Zappos. Famous
for customer service excellence, Zappos encourages its customers
to talk with them, sometimes for hours. The key here is choosing
the metrics that are right not just for you, but your clients
When creating your metrics take a look at your industry
standards. By benchmarking organizations in a similar industry
to yours, you will be able to gather additional ideas. For
example in the airline industry, key performance indicators may
include departure times, lost baggage, and customer
If you really want to keep things simple, take a look at the
net promoter score. NPS is quite possibly the ultimate customer
service metric as it asks and measures only one question. That
question is “how likely are you to recommend us to your
friend/colleague?” This is also referred to by some companies as
the recommended index.
Be sure to include the human factors, i.e. soft metrics when
creating your balanced scorecard. Don't underestimate the
importance of people when it comes to performance measurement.
Finally, and probably the most important point of all, always
make sure that your customer service metrics are aligned with
your customers' needs.