At the end of the summer our very own Al Hopper, Co-Founder & Director of Operations here at SocialPath Solutions, had the privilege of participating in a Google Hangout with Neal Topf, Erica Strother Marois, and Justin Robbins. Their topic of conversation revolved around the previous Twitter chat (#ICMIchat) discussing metrics with ICMI.

Contact centers have evolved over the years and Neal kicks off the discussion by mentioning that phone based contact center metrics are simply a starting point which provide a framework for customer experience. While innovations are taking place regarding these metrics, traditional contact center practices are still quite valuable.

The group discusses FCR (first contact resolution) as being a major driver in engaging with customers and keeping them satisfied. It really defines the evolution of the channel in customer interaction. Justin explains that while FCR can be defined differently across the board, metrics among channels tend to be inward facing. At this point, the customer must be the head or the driver of metrics, aka what is most important. He argues that outward facing metrics must become more of a priority in providing the best possible customer experience and the return that comes from that. So where does FCR come in? Justin explains that anything measured is based off of a direct outcome or desired result. Three questions should be, what’s best for our customer, what’s most important and easiest for them and how can we support that with our existing staff and technologies?

Tune in to the hangout to hear Justin’s credit card company example: http://www.icmi.com/Resources/Metrics/2015/08/ICMIchat-Live-New-Contact-Center-Metrics

Al and Justin highlighted the topic of issue avoidance within contact centers then went on to encourage the use of multiple sources of data in measuring FCR. Single sources of data will not necessarily paint an accurate picture. Al makes an important point by mentioning that measurements should be done in accordance with what your company and its customers need.

Neal jumps in when asked, “What do you think as far as new metrics that will be coming out in the contact center”? He mentions customer effort score as something that could be the next greatest thing as a long-term metric. While the majority of the score is attributable to the contact center, it also relates to customer gifts.

The next topic of conversation is: What advice is there for adopting these new metrics and introducing them to agents? Neal describes the easy part as getting the word of the new metrics out there. The challenge, he says, is explaining why to the supervisors and agents. He suggests that this is an introduction that should be backed by a budget as an incentive. Justin suggests letting agents know how they can affect and have an impact on these new practices. Al explains that agents should be aware of why these changes are being implemented to inform them through training and teaching exactly what they’re going to be responsible for.

What do you think about the adoption of new metrics and how they’re implemented to agents? Tell us your thoughts in a comment below!