A successful customer experience means different things across departments, which is why organizations need a standardized set of metrics to ensure they're meeting their goals. Customer experience metrics can help companies identify unsatisfied customers, lower churn, increase retention and loyalty, and reduce friction across the enterprise.
Despite the fact that measurement is deeply embedded in business functions like finance and IT, many companies still struggle with measurement when it comes to customer experience.
TTEC recommends five key metrics when gauging the effectiveness of a company’s customer experience strategy.
1. First Contact Resolution
First Contact Resolution (FCR) sounds like it should be easy to measure, but many organizations find it difficult to even define the metric given how customers use myriad channels when engaging with an organization.
FCR metrics are necessary for root cause analysis and process streamlining. Call quality FCR determinations and FCR call stats are great for identifying training and coaching needs for associates and process improvement opportunities. FCR can be measured by QA call monitoring, IVR survey, or post-call or Web survey. Measuring First Contact Resolution is the first step toward customer experience improvement.
2. Average Handle Time
Average Handle Time (AHT) is a key measure for any contact center. In essence, it tells organizations the total time their associates spend with a contact.
Usually, a lower AHT implies that contact center associates are being efficient and quickly handling customer concerns. However, just because a call is shorter doesn’t necessarily mean it’s more effective.
There’s been a long-running debate over which metrics to use as an organization’s primary ones: AHT or FCR. The problem with AHT is that it tends to focus associates on speed of service rather than quality of service and omits the details about the outcome of the call. This often leads to associates rushing customers off the phone which ultimately leads to a poor customer experience. Oftentimes, a company will remove AHT as a performance metric only to find that FCR rates improve.
3. Net Promoter Score
Net Promoter Score (NPS) was first introduced in 2003 in Harvard Business Review by Frederick Reichelds’ article, “One Number You Need to Grow,” and relies on a single question, “Would you recommend our organization to a friend?” to understand customer loyalty.
Asking the ultimate question allows companies to track promoters (enthusiasts) and detractors (unhappy customers). Customers can be categorized based on their answer to the ultimate question. Although there are numerous pros and cons to relying on NPS to measure customer satisfaction, studies have shown a correlation between higher customer spend and improved NPS.
4. Customer Effort Score
The biggest cause of excessive customer effort is the need to call back multiple times to get an issue resolved. Companies can reduce this type of effort and measure the effects with a Customer Effort Score (CES).
Many companies believe they’re performing well in this regard, because they have strong FCR scores, but oftentimes they’re not addressing the effort that customers made beforehand to get their problem resolved through other channels.
By looking at customer interactions across the enterprise as a whole rather than examining individual interactions, companies can more easily identify areas where customers make increased effort to get issues resolved and fix the root cause or create a solution.
5. Customer Satisfaction Score
The benefit of measuring satisfaction after each engagement is that companies can quickly see whether associates have resolved the problem and how happy the customer was with the customer experience that was delivered.
While this type of analysis is important, it’s critical not to focus solely on individual interactions. A great customer experience is made up of multiple interactions so organizations must measure overall satisfaction. Measuring the overall customer satisfaction is a better predictor of the likelihood of a customer churning.
Measuring customer experience has thus become one of the biggest challenges that businesses face. Considering the myriad interactions a customer makes across a company’s touchpoints, defining the right set of metrics to gauge customer experience success requires mapping all points of contact, applying a number of customer experience metrics, and integrating customer interactions. Only then will companies begin to gauge if they’re effectively delivering on the customer experience.