What is First Contact Resolution (FCR)?

First contact resolution (FCR) is a contact center metric that measures the percentage of customer contacts that are resolved on the first try. FCR is correlated with contact center efficiency and costs, as well as customer satisfaction. Customers whose issues are resolved with just one phone call or chat session are typically more satisfied than customers who require multiple interactions to achieve resolution. Contact centers try to avoid those multiple contacts, as well, because higher contact volume equals higher costs.

First contact resolution makes sense as a KPI, but it can be difficult to measure accurately. Some contact centers have the agents self-report whether a completed contact resulted in a resolved issue, but this method can be distorted and needs to be periodically audited. Another way to measure FCR is to survey customers, but then organizations run the risk of not having a large enough sample size. Some centers also use ACD data to see if they received multiple calls from the same phone number within a predefined number of hours. A newer, promising way to measure first contact resolution is speech analytics. Whatever the measurement method, businesses should put a stake in the ground and be consistent about measuring it.

As with any metric, first contact resolution (FCR) should be viewed within the context of all the contact center's KPIs. Taken alone, it doesn't tell the full story about a contact center's performance. But it's an important piece of the puzzle when viewed with other metrics. Additionally, like with many contact center KPIs, tweaking FCR results may impact other metrics. Businesses that want to increase first contact resolution may have to accept an increase in average handle times, as agents will spend more time trying to resolve customers' issues the first time around.

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