How do you put in place a plan that addresses low FCR with a view to improving it? It begins at the top, with serious management commitment and goes down all the way to the floor. It is only when FCR becomes a way of life that your organization starts reaping its benefits. Here’s how:
Right Commitment: The Service Desk that focuses on FCR as a metric is open to process improvements and streamlining, eliminating inter-departmental communication snafus that tend to affect the agent’s ability to resolve a problem on first contact. This commitment reflects in the attitude the organization adopts towards communicating the criticality of FCR across channels.
Right Hiring and Training: With your agent being the face of your company, there needs to be great emphasis placed on inducting and training agents to hit the ground running. Recruitment practices need to be crafted keeping in mind the kind of pressures an agent will be under.
The training that should be imparted needs to cover the product in-depth. Training must include the how and why of troubleshooting, what information to ask for, what the results of troubleshooting steps mean and when to escalate. You must provide access to an integrated knowledge base which has clean up-to-date data that agents can use while resolving issues.
Right Authority: Once your agent has been thoroughly trained and has access to the knowledge base, you need to let them go, and take decisions on the fly. If the agent is not going to have the authority to implement the best solution without checking with someone, or if he is forced to follow a script or set of tasks without deviation, then you have not managed to derive the maximum out of the extensive training program or the power of resolution on first contact.
Incorporate FCR measures into employee compensation and incentive plans. Include agent FCR performance as a component in the annual review process—as a basis for compensation and rewards.
Right Technology Support: An agent needs task needs to be enabled with the right technology at his fingertips that equips him with knowledge and processes to do his job better. Technology needs to simplify processes to enable agents to work smarter. But it doesn’t end there: support needs to continue with ongoing training, better tools, awards, incentives and assistance.
Right Review Practices: Continually review your performance and other customer feedback to make sure your FCR measurement program is on track. Achieving first contact resolution will be reflected in your customer satisfaction ratings and ultimately in your bottom line.
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