Nine call center initiatives to consider
Read how top call center initiatives can boost team morale and foster a sense of achievement among your call center agents, improve call center effici...
I see a lot of chatter on my various social feeds around Average Handle Time (AHT). The major point of debate is that AHT is now a useless metric for understanding how effective you are at measuring customer experience (CX). And not just CX, but using it to measure effective customer journey maps, NPS, CSAT, or Customer Effort Score, or some other voice of the customer metric. Whilst I don’t disagree with the importance of customer experience and having effective customer journeys, I do not believe that AHT is a resource planning metric only and offer my view that organisations should really be tracking AHT as a measure of CX. Let me explain. In any contact centre the ability to handle calls efficiently and effectively impacts both operating costs (and bottom line) and the CX.
Within our space of customer engagement analytics, I am constantly amazed as the opportunities that are presented to organisations to gain real insight into what is actually happening when consumers/customers are talking to the organisations who provide products and services to them. In almost all cases there are great opportunities to understand the AHT and so improve the CX. It’s not always the case that analytics points to opportunities to reduce AHT either, sometimes the opposite is true.
Organisations who address these insights get optimum AHT, frictionless engagement and operational savings. So in summary, AHT does matter. Great customer experience depends on reducing customer effort and one element of this is the time it takes them (and you) to get what they need done. There are opportunities to optimise AHT, but these opportunities might not be visible without effective conversation analytics. Only by understanding what is happening on your customer interactions will you really be able to positively impact both experience and AHT. I would suggest that having effective interaction analytics is the key to bridging the AHT and CX conundrum. Without analytics maybe AHT remains a domain of the resource planners only, with analytics it takes on a whole different perspective.
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