Key performance indicators (KPIs) for customer service are a great way to measure the success of your team. However, there’s a catch:

Many companies don’t focus enough on them or overly focus on them.


No single KPI is enough to tell you what’s really going on.

Furthermore, using them will certainly affect the behavior of the staff. For example, if you only measure number of tickets solved, agents will focus on solving as much as possible while not caring about the quality of the service they provide.

On the other hand, if you focus only on the quality, the amount of tickets solved will drastically drop. What’s the catch than? Short answer: balance. If you want the long answer, you’ll have to keep reading.

4 key types of customer service KPIs you should be tracking

1. Occupancy

The basic KPI. It’s like asking “What did you do today?” Occupancy means measuring the number of tickets solved, ticket volumes as well as the cost per contact. Is the agent doing what he’s expected to do?

2. Productivity

A bit different that occupancy, it’s like asking the agent “How good are you at what you do?’’ This is different from company to company and usually includes measuring the overall hourly efficiency.

3. Handling

Measuring handling is similar to asking “How long did it take you to solve that problem?” In other words, you measure the average time an agent needs to solve a ticket. Of course, each channel has different average times, so email ticket is not going to take the same time as a phone call or chat would.

4. Customer experience

This is a trickier one, but let’s continue the trend and replace it with a question. “How happy is the customer?” would be the appropriate question for this metric. It is a combination of customer satisfaction (CSAT), first contact resolution (FCR), customer effort score (CES) and a few other metrics.

Other metrics that can help

Reopened Tickets: While this is not directly indicating the level of your team’s performance, it can be a valuable information that needs to find its place in reports. It can point out to a issue that persistently reapeats but it can also indicate that some agents require additional training.

Employee Engagement: Employees need to feel like they’re a part of the company, not just another item or means to an end. If they are engaged in the workplace they will be more driven to help customers as well. Make sure to conduct employee satisfaction surveys from time to time to see what are the areas you should work on to create a better experience for your agents.

We’ve mentioned that there’s a catch:

All these metrics sound like valuable tools that will provide information necessary to bring further improvements to your business. However, if you don’t balance between them and measure only one you’re going to find yourself in dire straits. Let’s find out why:

Why measuring only Occupancy is bad:

Occupancy tells you how much time did the agent spend on doing what he’s paid to do. It’s a crucial metric necessary for us to know the time is managed well and everyone is doing what they’re supposed to do. However, it does not tell you how’s that time used. An agent can spend all 12-hour shift focused on his tasks, talking to the customers and solving their issues and if you measure only occupancy you’ll never notice something’s wrong, but you don’t know whether they’re doing it efficiently. Maybe he could have worked on 10 tickets more that day, but he has wasted all the time trying to convince a customer into something that’s obviously clear.

Why measuring only Productivity is bad:

Again, productivity is a great metric and unlike occupancy, it does tell us how efficient the agent is. However, if we’re measuring only that, we’re missing other key metrics like quality of the work (CSAT), and time management (Occupancy).

Key takeaway:

All 4 KPIs mentioned are essential if you want to have a detailed insight into the performance of your team. Exclude one of them, and you might miss crucial data.

Remember, balance is the key.