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7 Ways To Improve First Call Resolution

first call resolution

What is FCR? An FCR is an abbreviation for First Call Resolution. Some help desks may use a slightly different term but it means the same thing everywhere;

a call that ends in a resolved ticket at the first level. The user calls with an issue, the help desk agent fixes and the caller is happy is an FCR. A call where the resolution is beyond the agent and it needs to go to a vendor or support group is not an FCR.

Why is it important?

When a company agrees to provide an IT help desk as a service for another company, one of the main points in the agreement will revolve around FCR; First Call Resolution. It is an abbreviation that every help desk agent knows only too well and every manager stresses about all too often. FCR rate is extremely important because customers want their IT issues answered quickly and efficiently. A customer is going to be pretty upset if they have an issue that has been sent around several different vendors and resolver teams, only to come back to the original agent 5 days later for what is a quick fix.

How do we improve our FCR stats?

1. Efficient Knowledge Database

Knowledge is power and having an efficient knowledge database is a powerful tool in getting the FCR rate up. The articles in the database should be clear and concise, with good instructions on how to fix the issue. If the agent has to scroll through tons of unnecessary information about thing that he or she doesn’t always understand then they are more likely to send the ticket to someone else.

2. Subject Matter Experts

If your desk is lucky enough to have a few IT gurus who know how the systems work and understand the quick fixes, have them available to provide knowledge to inexperienced agents who might not fully understand the scope of the issue. If the desk is busy, the Subject Matter Experts, or SME’s, should be taking calls and handling tickets, but in off peak times they can be walking around and providing valuable assistance.

3. Group Chats

The combined knowledge of the team is far better than individual experience. Look at the software the company uses and find a way to have group chats where all members of the help desk can add information about issues they might be having and they can post questions about issues they might not be familiar with. Google Hangouts, Lotus Notes Same time and Skype are all ways that the team can have a group chat that they can collaborate professionally.

4. Team meetings and refresher training

Software changes all the time and even the most experienced agents can get rusty on certain systems if they have not used them for a while. Some agents will support multiple accounts that use different software and systems making it extra hard to remember them all. Refresher training allows the team to get up to date knowledge on the quick fixes at first level that increase our team and individual FCR levels.

Also Read: How to motivate your customer support staff?

5. Call Quality Checks

Most help desks will have people who check call quality and the job should be more than just making sure the agents are not being rude. The people listening to the calls should be checking that the right processes were followed and when the agents miss an easy FCR, a helpful email should be sent informing them of where they went wrong and what they can do next time. If the agent is making consistent mistakes and the FCR level is far below what it should be then a meeting might be needed with the team leader.

6. One-on-One meetings with agents.

One of the big responsibilities of the team leader is to ensure that the agents are performing to the best of their abilities. Agents performing to the best of their abilities will have a high FCR score and good statistics when looked at in the meeting with the team leader. These meetings can be an excellent chance for the team leader to understand why the agent is performing below expectations and start the process of improvement.

7. Reward and punishment

One quick way to turn things around is to offer incentive and rewards. You can have a monthly award for the highest level of FCR and special incentives for the team if they achieve their targets. If you give the team actual targets to strive for and update them constantly, the team will be eager to reach them and work harder for the FCR.

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Areg Vardanyan7 Ways To Improve First Call Resolution
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