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Call Center Excellence - Customer & Performance Management Report Summary


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The primary objective of all call centers is to provide impeccable customer service, often for organizations that support and manage a huge number of products and services. Most companies are challenged by the task of providing enhanced customer service along with order management and technical support for a large and diverse number of products and services.
Best Practices, LLC undertook this study to identify the benchmarks of leading companies as to what are the key call center models/structures, operational efficiency metrics, knowledge resources and management to support productivity, complaint resolution, and differentiated service levels for key customer groups.

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Call Center Excellence - Customer & Performance Management Report Summary

  1. 1. Best Practices, LLC Strategic Benchmarking ResearchCall Center Excellence: Customerand Performance Management
  2. 2. BEST PRACTICE2Copyright © Best Practices , LLCTable of ContentsProject Background Project Overview Summary of Key Insights and Observations Benchmark Class ProfileStudy Findings Call Center Structures Call Center Performance Metrics Differentiated Service for High Value Customers Complaint Resolution Management Knowledge Management About Best Practices, LLC
  3. 3. BEST PRACTICE3Copyright © Best Practices , LLCFifty-eight representatives from 56 companies – including many leading bio-pharmaceutical, financial, and insurance firms – participated in this research. Mostparticipating call centers support national or global organizations.Participating Companies Cover Healthcare,Financial, Insurance & Other Key Sectors3MAbbott LaboratoriesAllstate FinancialAmway GlobalAugsburg FortressAviva Global ServicesBD BiosciencesCaribbean Customer CareSolutions, Inc.CenturyLinkCoca-Cola HellenicDelta Dental of IllinoisEmoneyadvisorEPACESI CanadaFarm Credit CanadaFederal Reserve Bank ofKansas CityFostersGlaxoSmithKlineGraco, Inc.Pinnacle Financial PartnersPraxairProgressive Medical, Inc.Protective LifeRoyal Bank of ScotlandSafeguardSchnuck Markets, Inc.Sherry LaboratoriesShire PharmaceuticalsSoftline PastelSolvayStandard Bank South AfricaStanley Black & DeckerStrykerTelecom New ZealandTELUS Health & FinancialSolutionsTriple i/MediMedia USSAUnited Air Care, Inc.XO CommunicationsGraco, Inc.Great Lakes Educational LoanServices, IncIbercomJohnson & Johnson HCSLaCrosse FootwearLinde Gas ChinaM.I. Hummel CompanyMassey UniversityMedrad, Inc.MerckMerialMetLifeMMSINalcoNextGenTelNMS LabsPetrodar Operating CompanyPfizerPGG Wrightson Ltd.
  4. 4. BEST PRACTICE4Copyright © Best Practices , LLCLeadership Roles of Research ParticipantsResearch data and insights were contributed by a seasoned and diverse range of callcenter leaders, from executives and vice presidents to directors and managers.Benchmark respondents work in such functions as customer and client services, sales,order management, and operational excellence.Senior Vice President, Client Service CenterVice President, Customer ServiceAssociate Vice PresidentAssociate Vice President, Call Center AdministrationAssociate Director, CRM - Business OperationsDirector, Customer Service CenterDirector, Client ServicesDirector, Client SupportDirector, Customer CareDirector, Customer ServiceDirector, Customer ServicesDirector, Customer Services & Order ManagementDirector, Customer SupportDirector, Global Customer Support and SatisfactionDirector, SalesDirector, Supply ChainDirector, Wholesaler Channel OperationsManaging Director, Customer CareCall Center SupervisorFloor Manager, Customer ServiceHead, Sales Contact CentersSenior Manager, Client ServicesManager, SalesManager, Associate Training and DevelopmentManager, Call Center OperationsManager, Channel ReportingManager, Contact CenterManager, CRCManager, Customer ServiceManager, Customer AccessManager, Customer Care CenterManager, Customer ResponsivenessManager, Customer ServiceManager, Help Desk OperationsManager, Quality & TrainingManager, Sales and MarketingManager, Sales Call CenterManager, Strategic Support ServicesOperations Manager, Customer ServiceRemote Services Manager, Customer SupportSenior Manager, Client ServicesBenchmarking Manager, Operational SupportBusiness ManagerSupport ManagerBusiness Process Leader, Customer CareSenior Analyst, Contact CenterSenior Analyst, Workforce ManagementClient Services Analyst
  5. 5. BEST PRACTICE5Copyright © Best Practices , LLC(n=55)Best Abandonment Rates Are As Low As 1%Across all call centers, low abandonment rates are evidence of good performance! At thesame time, nearly all product-size call center segments also reflect wide performanceranges and abandonment rates many time higher. The number of products handled is not ahigh driver of abandonment rates.Question 9. What percentage of calls are abandoned by customers (prior to call pick-up by agent)? Segmented byNumber of Products Supported in the Call Center1%1.2%1.5%2%2%3.5%5%7%15%1%2%2%2%3%3.5%4%6%1%1%1.2%1.4%1.5%2%2.5%2.8%4%5%5%5%5%8%9.5%15%18%1%1.6%2%3%4%5%10%1%1.5%2%2%2%2.5%4%9%20%36%1%2.9%1 to 10Products11 to 100Products101 to 1000Products1001 to 10,000Products10,001 to 100,000Products+ 100,001ProductsKey Stats1 to 10Products 11 to 100 Products 101 to 1000 Products 1001 to 10,000 Products 10,001 to 100,000 Prod. +100,001 ProductsMedian 2% 3% 4% 3% 2% 2%Mean (Avg.) 4% 3% 5% 4% 8% 2%1.0%Min4.9%Average36.0%MaxAbandonment Rate (%)Total Group
  6. 6. BEST PRACTICE6Copyright © Best Practices , LLC(n=56)Most Companies Do Not Track Multi-Call ResolutionQuestion 12: Do you track the percentage ofrequests / orders / interactions that require multiplecalls to be fully resolved?Only 39% of benchmark call centers track the percentage of customer interactions thatrequire multiple calls to be fully resolved. According to this group, 29% of all customerinteractions on average require multiple calls to achieve full resolution.61% 39%YesNo%Maximum 10075th Percentile 40Mean 29Median 2525th Percentile 10Minimum 1(n=21)Question 13: If you do track the percentage of requests/ orders / interactions that require multiple calls to befully resolved, what is your multi-call resolution rate?Multi-Call Customer Interactions Tracking Multi-Call Resolution Rate
  7. 7. BEST PRACTICE7Copyright © Best Practices , LLCDifferentiated Service Targets High Value and“Strategic” Customers% Rated "Highly Effective"50%37%33%13%25%Lifetime value of customer/accountStrategic customers (important to market or thoughtleadership or referrals)Total annual value of accountProduct ownership type (customers of mostexpensive products)OtherTo deliver superior service, companies segment customer groups often around accountvalue. Fifty percent of participants rated lifetime account value as a highly effectivesegment, as did 33% for annual account value. Differentiated service for strategic customers-- who can influence certain markets, serve as thought leaders, and drive referrals -- wasalso rated highly effective by 37%.Question 18: If you provide different service levels to customer groups, please rate the effectiveness of segmentingyour most valued customers along the following lines in order to provide higher service levels to them:n=16n=19n=18n=16n=4“It is hard to keepcurrent on „elite‟customers due tothe dynamics ofthe market.”--Director of CustomerSupport, Large MedicalDevice Company“We base service on the needsof the customer rather than thevalue. By doing so, we takegreat care of our top customers,and promote future businessfrom lower end customers.”--Director of CustomerService, Large MedicalDevice Company
  8. 8. BEST PRACTICE8Copyright © Best Practices , LLCEffective Software Systems Produce VersatileAgentsQuestion 26: Which of the following business functions does your software system support?(Please check all that apply)(n=53)In addition to customer service, agents must often manage orders, complaints, technicalhelp, and sales issues. Software systems should account for the multi-faceted role ofthese users in their design, facilitating cross-functional interfacing and practical datamanagement.Business Functions Supported57% 55%51%36% 34%89%CustomerserviceOrder entry andmanagementKnowledgemanagementComplaintmanagementTechnicalhelpdeskSalesmanagementVoices from the Field:“Having the system do too much can make it bulkyand slow. However, not integrating the systems(i.e., having multiple stand alone applications)makes agents work clumsily, reduces productivityand communication, and slows network speed.”--Director, Customer Service Center
  9. 9. BEST PRACTICE9Copyright © Best Practices , LLCInternally Developed Software Systems Are MoreCommon than Any Single “Big-Name” PlatformQuestion 25: What software system / knowledge management applications does your call centeruse to assist agents during calls? (Please check all that apply)(n=48)In total, 77% of benchmark call centers use branded external software and CRM systems,while more than half use homegrown systems. This means that almost half (45%) of thebenchmark class have adopted multiple platforms to meet their knowledge managementand service needs, usually pairing an internally developed system with an external one.35%6%8%10%10%17%21%52%Internally DevelopedSystemSAPOracle (Siebel)Microsoft (Dynamics)Oracle (Peoplesoft)JD EdwardsSalesforce.comOtherSuccessfully fusingone‟s business model(and internal systems)to a sophisticatedexternal system is anongoing process – anda source of acutedistress to call centerleaders who, whenfacing systemcompatibilityroadblocks, maycome to feel that sucha transition does moreharm than good.
  10. 10. BEST PRACTICE10Copyright © Best Practices , LLC10Copyright © Best Practices , LLCBest Practices, LLC6350 Quadrangle Drive, Suite 200Chapel Hill, NC Best Practices, LLCBest Practices, LLC is a research and consulting firm that conducts work based on thesimple yet profound principle that organizations can chart a course to superior economicperformance by studying the best business practices, operating tactics, and winningstrategies of world-class companies.Link for Report: Customer & Performance Management Benchmarking Report