Living in an era where there’s seemingly a statistic for everything, it can be difficult to truly understand the real value of each data point. You may look at your email count for the day, see it’s in the triple digits, and say “wow, I’ve had a busy day”. But on closer examination, half of the emails are holiday junk and a quarter are from a vendor who can’t get meeting invites right, leaving only the usual amount of “real” emails in your inbox.
Misleading statistics exist throughout the business world and too often they are blindly trusted without looking into what they really mean. This is especially true in a communication dominant field such as customer service where two conversations can be drastically different, yet still have the potential to hold the same value in a spreadsheet.
With all of this said, here are the top 3 most misleading customer service statistics…
1) Average daily tickets received – Low ticket counts may give your team a moment to breathe and celebrate, but don’t let it boost your confidence too much. In customer service, you actually want to have a healthy average ticket volume. It not only justifies the purpose of your department, but it’s also a clear sign your customers are having meaningful interactions with your products. As your business grows, so should the amount of tickets you average per day. If the number of tickets you are receiving is consistently dwindling, it’s time to boost retention efforts because you likely have a large amount of silent dissatisfaction among your customer base. The exception of course is if you’ve recently implemented a new help desk software, or introduced self-service for the first time.
2) First contact resolution rate – One major cause of unhappy customers is when they don’t feel like their voice matters to your company. That’s why a having a high first contact resolution rate, or closing a ticket after the initial response, isn’t always a good thing. On the surface it may seem like your team is efficient, but a high rate can indicate that not all issues are being resolved in full and agents are failing to “dig in” to find the root cause of customer problems. Not providing satisfactory answers because there is constant pressure to close tickets on the first try usually hurts the retention rate and is a poor customer service tactic.
3) Tickets closed per day – Still one of the most common ways to track an agent’s daily workload, looking at a closed tickets metric can be deceptive. In fact, some companies strongly dislike the statistic because it creates internal problems. For example, companies that rely on this stat to monitor performance often run into issues where agents “cherry pick” tickets they can close easily to pad their stats. This is not only bad for team morale, but it’s terrible for customers since the complex questions that are being passed over are usually more vital to successful operations. Instead, some businesses now evaluate and reward agents by looking at positive customer feedback in reviews or agent ratings, while also constantly checking with customer success to see what’s being said about experiences with certain agents.
To summarize, all three of these misleading customer service statistics have one thing in common – they aren’t truly focusing on the customer. Worry less about how fast tickets are being closed and who’s closing them, and more about what your overall customer base feels about their experience working with you.
Focusing on customer service statistics such as average time to close, overall customer distress, and average number of agents contributing to a ticket will provide you with a better understanding of how each customer truly feels about your business. How do you obtain these stats? Use a comprehensive customer service software solution and ensure your data remains relevant and impactful to the bottom line of your business.