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The Best Help Desk Metrics for Remote Customer Support

Author: Helga York
Helga York Article author

Help desk metrics are crucial while using a remote help desk software, as they provide clarity on performance, customer experience, agent utilization, agent satisfaction, and more. All of which help improve the current process, increase customer satisfaction and avoid possible issues. However, due to high volumes of data that needs to be tracked, it’s challenging for an organization to identify which help desk metrics matter for your IT team.

In the following article, learn which help desk metrics are industry standard, why they’re important, and check out 13 help desk metrics.

What are help desk metrics?

Help desk metrics are a measurable method to track and improve a variety of support team elements (such as contact resolution rate, average resolution time, etc.) These metrics help organizations better serve their customers or employees if we are talking about HR help desk software. The most common intention of a help desk is to provide IT support.

Top 13 help desk metrics

Check out 13 examples of help desk metrics that can help your organization consistently meet and exceed your customer expectations, and vastly enhance the reputation of your brand.

Number 1: Tickets by status

The first example of help desk metrics, support tickets by status, is a crucial metric because it provides a concise insight into ticket volume that your organization receives—along with the corresponding ticket status.

By tracking customer inquiry ticket statuses (new, open, pending, on-hold, solved, closed) regularly, brands can monitor the overall performance metrics and the responsiveness of your support service operations. This IT help desk metric insight provides the chance to make vital improvements and offer internal support that can vastly increase customer satisfaction levels.

Help desk Tickets metric

Number 2: First response time

First response time (FRT) is crucial because it measures the average response time between the receipt of a customer inquiry to the initial communication from an agent.

Maintaining a fast FRT must be one of an organization’s biggest customer-facing priorities. According to the survey, for 45% of US online customers it’s important to get a quick response, otherwise they don’t finish their purchase. This help desk metric can help brands keep a visual record of FRT over time, providing prime opportunities to routinely enhance customer support strategies.

Number 3: Top service agents

Supporting, engaging, and motivating staff is crucial to a company’s continual service success, even though managing a remote team could be challenging.

Formatted in a leaderboard layout, a top-performing agent KPI provides a clear picture of individual performances on a customer support team—which lets a company reward positive achievements while helping those needing extra training.

Another important help desk metric is utilization rate, that allows organizations to monitor the workload of their employees to pinpoint accuracy and assess the output of individual employees. All of which contributes to a more effective and productive service department.

Number 4: Customer satisfaction

This customer satisfaction indicator is powerful because it provides a snapshot of customers’ overall satisfaction within a specified timeline.

Usually tracked using a 1 to 5 scale, a customer satisfaction score (CSAT) metric, gauges how customers perceive a particular business’s techniques. A CSAT is most effective when coupled with Net Promoter Score (NPS) indicators.

A Net Promoter Score (NPS) is one of the most important client-centric metrics because it illustrates the likelihood of a customer actually recommending a business’s service to their peers. Considering social proof is one of the most powerful factors impacting buying decisions, the modern consumer values input from other customers above all. According to the study, 66% of consumers would also trust the opinions of their friends or relatives.

A service desk metric example: Net Promoter Score

These ​​ITIL service desk metrics (ITIL KPI = Information Technology Infrastructure Library Key Performance Indicators) allow organizations to:

  • • Evaluate their volume of ‘Promoters,’ ‘Passives,’ and ‘Detractors
  • • Assess their overall NPS score
  • • Build strategies that enhance this metric—therefore optimizing general customer service performance

Number 5: First contact resolution rate

A crucial element of any help desk metric dashboard, is the First Contact Resolution Rate (FCR) displays the total number of tickets/support requests that a customer support team fixes during the initial point of contact.

With such a high volume of touchpoints and channels to navigate in the modern world of digital, solving customer problems with minimal steps/follow-ups can significantly increase efficiency and satisfaction levels.

Number 6: Tickets by channel

There seems to be an endless number of methods, platforms, and channels that brands must manage in the world of digital. Having a clear understanding of how each and every support channel allows a business to adapt to every new demand of the modern age and to get a snapshot regarding how to allocate and focus optimization efforts.

ticket metric by channel

Number 7: Average resolution time

Average resolution time (AKA Full resolution time) is a visualization metric that helps businesses accurately assess the average timeline from when a support request comes into the help desk software to final resolution—this excludes non-business/non-operational hours.

When it comes to CX, the motto is “the faster—the better” for IT support professionals resolving customer issues. Thus, if it becomes obvious that the average resolution time is less than optimal, it’s easier to start developing solutions to fix it.

Number 8: Cost per ticket

The price per ticket is vital to a productive service desk experience that reveals the total average expense required to resolve customer issues.

Through tracking this metric periodically, brands can develop a clear idea of how effective and efficient their support processes are—while simultaneously identifying the best resources to further optimize the process. This enables businesses to mitigate problems before they happen—thus, saving money and providing a better customer service experience.

Number 9: Repeat visits

A telling but often underrated metric is the number of repeat visits a customer pays to submit a support query. This is because if a person contacts your support team repeatedly, it usually means that their issues or questions aren’t being resolved effectively.

Having a way to track repeat visits can help businesses notice the pattern and develop solutions before trust with the brand is damaged. For example, an organization may recognize a need for personalized agent training—or that it’s necessary to create a more succinct communication process.

Number 10: Customer churn

Since customers can effortlessly end their relationship with a brand with a swipe or a click, tracking churn rates is critical to reducing and mitigating them. Regular monitoring of this metric empowers agents and decision-makers with information needed to decide how to prioritize efforts while developing stronger engagement strategies that inspire customer loyalty.

Number 11: Quality rate

Meeting and surpassing performance goals relies heavily on a quality rate—a most dynamic service desk KPI.

Based on the general efficacy and impression of a business’s help desk service, quality rate metrics uncover patterns, trends, or numbers derived from customer feedback. By requesting the customer rate the quality of their customer experiences, brands can learn quickly about whether their teams are consistently meeting customers and nurturing a positive brand reputation.

Number 12: Customer Effort Score

The help desk metric, Customer Effort Score (CES) tracks the effort that customers must invest in resolving their issue, receiving an answer, or finishing a task.

To find an accurate CES rating, send customers a survey requesting them to rate the ease of their support interaction on a scale of “very easy” to “very difficult.” It’s a good idea to offer a “comment” section so surveyors can have a place to explain the details of their experience and how they came to the rating they provided. Businesses can then calculate the median number reliant upon the total submitted survey responses. This data then enables the organization to make adjustments to improve and expedite the experience, which enhances the CX.

Number 13: Transfer rate

Transfer rate is the number of tickets an agent ultimately transfers to another support professional or department. High transfer rates can indicate that customers or agents are contacting the incorrect first-touch agent—which could mean the help desk’s internal routing system may be at fault.

Implementing automation tools can more easily (and quickly) route employees or customers to the appropriate agent based on their request type, language, or knowledge base. For example, using a chatbot to collect key customer data upfront, which can then route the discussion to the correct support professional.

Best practices for improving your help desk metrics

Now that we’ve learned about 13 of the most important help desk metrics, check out some very helpful help desk best practices that can help your team boost customer experiences.

Collect feedback by sending customer satisfaction surveys

Boost HR and/or IT help desk support by collecting feedback from your employees regarding how current workflows and processes function and operate. Internal input from your team can help human resource and IT help desk agents recognize issues and develop solutions.

To acquire input from staff, establish triggers within your chosen support software that will automatically submit surveys to help desk specialists once they close a ticket. Surveys should consist of questions regarding employee satisfaction with their experience, as well as the extent of the effort they had to invest to resolve the customer’s issue.

Provide self-service portals and or knowledge bases

An excellent method to bolster satisfaction scores while reducing ticket backlog is by providing a self-serve portal or a knowledge base. Help desk software should always have a knowledge base option. Frequently, customers are in search of fast solutions to simple problems. Instead of submitting an additional ticket, a knowledge base lets end-users look up and fix problems on their own.

Implement automation, apps, and integrations to optimize processes for your team

Give your team more time by giving them access to apps, systems, and integrations that handle asset management, team collaboration, change management—and more—from one central platform. Integrating popular apps like Zoom and Slack can also lower system switching. Another optimization method is to create request forms that redirect certain request types to the appropriate department and close tickets once a specified time frame expires.

Furthermore, integrating help desk remote support software, such as HelpWire, into the assistance process significantly bolsters the efficiency of resolving issues. This technology grants support specialists the capability to access their clients’ remote computers directly. Such direct interaction not only accelerates the resolution process but also enhances the accuracy of diagnostics, thereby increasing customer satisfaction. Specialists can address problems within their actual environment, leading to a deeper understanding of the issue and a quicker, more effective solution.

Selecting the metrics that actually matter

Being that there’s little to no context to best articulate the value of the figures, standalone data is basically intangible. Along with overarching KPIs and specific business objectives, metrics should illustrate a concise and clear story describing your department’s performance, and the value it offers to the company as a whole.

Via conversational support (which consists of proactive, self-serve, and human pathways) organizations can contextualize figures and create strategic action to improve help desk services. Optimization levels are based on the size of your organization, but monitoring the performance of a set of relevant metrics lowers the strain on your team while increasing customer satisfaction, and tweak strategies as you scale.

Why IT service desk metrics are crucial

Service desk or help desk metrics and key performance indicators (KPIs) are powerful tools that help organizations improve customer experiences, inspire loyalty, and increase revenue generation in the process.

Check out several reasons why integrating service desk metrics is vital to consistent success.

Increases clarity

Your brand obtains a deep understanding of where to focus efforts to enrich your customer support performance. For example, if some of your service agents underperform, the brand gains more clarity as to why, and how to solve it (be it by offering training, support, or incentives).

Creates more accountability

Help desk reporting metrics can hold professionals more accountable, which can strengthen performance, create opportunities for ownership, and better distribute resources into numerous client-facing areas. When information is curated into a clear, comprehensible format (as in a customer service report, for example), better results will follow. Thus, all departments in your organization must accept accountability for their actions and nurture a more productive and satisfactory environment for all.

Strengthens loyalty

Under these conditions, KPI-driven loyalty functions on two levels:

  • • Customer loyalty
  • • Staff loyalty

In other words, when your support staff is content, engaged, and motivated… loyalty and performance will naturally improve. And when customers are satisfied with the quality of support they receive, there’s a higher chance that customers will return to the brand in the future.

Offers opportunities for innovation

Help desk KPI reports illustrate concise and clear insight that helps businesses optimize customer support processes sustainably. By implementing an online technical support metrics tool, brands ensure optimal efficiency and more adaptability while preserving time for more creative endeavors. In turn, help desk metrics for technical support will enhance brand reputation while setting them apart from their competition.

Help desk metrics FAQ

Help desk metrics are the numbers measured on a regular basis (be it daily or weekly) that contribute to an organization’s overall KPIs. They are usually static.

Help desk KPIs identify very specific goals that can then be modified depending on performance. For example, an organizations may notice patterns in attrition rates (metric), which indicates whether their intention to improve customer satisfaction rates for the quarter (KPI) is on track.

Help desk metrics are measurements that allow you to track your performance and effectively adjust your strategy to provide better customer support.
Check out our section on 13 help desk metrics and KPI section for more information. For now, here are some of the most important help desk metrics are:
  • • Ticket volume
  • • Resolution time
  • • Initial response times
  • • Resolution rates
  • • Customer satisfaction
  • • Conversations per agent
  • • Tickets completed
Help desk KPIs (also known as service desk KPIs) are performance metrics focused on an organization’s customer service and support activities. Help desk KPIs include first response times, issue resolution rates, satisfaction levels, and additional customer-facing metrics. It’s crucial to track this information to improve interactions with end-users.