15 Help Desk Metrics to Improve Customer Support

Help Desk Metrics

Did you know that 40% of service desk professionals fail to measure key business value metrics? 

If you don’t know your numbers or don’t have the right data up your sleeves, can you really take long-term strategic decisions?  

Remember whether you are a decade-old business or have newly formed your customer support department, you must consistently track the right help desk metrics. 

A good set of customer support metrics help you comprehend how well your support processes are meeting customer expectations. 

Besides, a help desk system can help you gain rich insights into customer service improvement areas. As your customer service offerings get better, your business becomes more cost-effective and leaves customers delighted. 

In this blog, we will take a look at 15 critical help desk reporting metrics. Dig in to learn the importance of these metrics for a well-balanced customer service process.

What Are the Important Help Desk Metrics You Should Track?

If your customer service team has too much data to handle, and doesn’t know where to start. These 15 help desk metrics should get you started quickly. Let’s take a look. 

Help Desk Metric 1: Ticket Volume

Ticket volume is one of the most important help desk metrics as it highlights the total number of support requests that your business receives over a period of time. In simpler terms, it tells you a lot about the health of your business and indicates the current demand for your support team.  

Monitoring this help desk metric for a long period can help you spot patterns in volume and predict when your business is most likely to have an increase in support tickets. 

In addition to this, your business can easily manage the staffing needs of your customer service team. By monitoring the ticket volume, you will know when you need to hire new employees to address the increasing ticket load. 

Help Desk Metric 2: New Ticket 

Unlike ticket volume that includes all customer service tickets, the ‘new tickets’ metric reflects the number of tickets your team has received recently. Your business needs to know the volume of incoming support requests from customers. All customer service managers need to have the exact figures on the number of requests their support team is managing.

This service desk metric can help you get a sense of issues and requests that your customer support agents are handling daily, weekly, or monthly. If you are receiving more support requests than your team can handle, you can plan to grow your team accordingly. Similarly, a reduction in the number of new tickets can mean that your self-service efforts are paying off and customers are able to resolve their issues themselves without raising a ticket. 

Help Desk Metric 3: Social Media Tickets

Most modern help desks can convert social media complaints or issues into unique tickets. Such tickets can be easily tracked, assigned, prioritized, and resolved in time for a memorable social media customer service experience. 

48% of consumers expect businesses to respond to their social media complaints or questions within 24 hours. 

Social media tickets have become one of the most popular metrics for help desk that allows you to manage customer issues on the leading social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and more. Since, both your existing and potential customers are spending a great deal of time on social media, resolving their issues in time will lead to improved brand perception. 

Help Desk Metric 4: Open Tickets

Open Tickets Help Desk Metric

Another help desk metric that managers need to monitor closely is the number of tickets that are ‘open’ or are ‘unresolved’

Ensure that there are a low number of open tickets, as more open tickets simply mean more customers waiting for you to solve their problems. If tickets are kept unresolved for a long time, they can lead to poor or negative support experiences and eventually customer churn. Therefore, you must encourage your team to keep the number of open tickets to a bare minimum. 

Help Desk Metric 5: Closed or Resolved Tickets

Closed tickets is another crucial help desk KPI that indicates the final status of a ticket. Now, most businesses use the term ‘Resolved‘ or ‘Closed‘ interchangeably, however, some use the former to indicate that a resolution has been shared with the customer. They only mark it as closed once the customer accepts the resolution. 

Closed tickets highlight the success of your customer support team in resolving customer issues. The more the number of closed tickets in comparison to open tickets the better. 

Closed or Resolved Tickets Help Desk Metric

In some cases, the customer who raised an issue with your business marks a ticket as closed. However, most customers have no idea what to do when their issue has been resolved. In such cases, the agents can step in and mark the ticket as closed. 

Help Desk Metric 6: Ticket Distribution

Ticket Distribution Help Desk Metric

Distribution of tickets is a key help desk metric. System administrators need to look at how support requests are distributed among agents. A help desk ticketing system enables managers and system administrators to learn more about ticket distribution.

Ticket distribution helps you ascertain that the right tickets are assigned to the most capable agents or teams. Every support ticket must be in safe hands. 

Your admin can find out if there are frequent issues with any of your products or services.

There may be times when you notice that an agent is unable to resolve technical issues within the set time period. Such situations would require you to rework your ticket distribution process and ensure that technical issues are distributed among agents who have the technical expertise. 

Help Desk Metric 7: Response Time 

Response time simply refers to the time between when a customer issue is received and when it is responded to by your agents. Nobody likes to wait, therefore, the objective of every customer service team must be to reduce the response time for delighted customers. 

Customer expectations are going through the roof when it comes to the response time. While some expect a response within the first hour, others demand a resolution within one business day. 

Now, we know some issues can be urgent or sensitive in nature and therefore, require immediate resolution. You must use the ‘ticket prioritizationfeature of a help desk to ensure such tickets are responded to first.

Responce time Help Desk Metric

Help Desk Metric 8: Resolution Time 

You should use customer support software to check on the resolution time of your customer queries and requests. You should understand on average, how long your customers have to wait for the full resolution of their issues. 

You need to consider the help desk ticket metrics that deal with the first response and the resolution time for delivering excellent customer service. If an agent repeatedly takes more time to resolve an issue than other agents, training them can be a great way to fill any knowledge gaps. Moreover, to reduce the resolution time, you can create an internal knowledge base for your agents where they can find all relevant information. 

Read More: How to Create an Internal Knowledge Base

Help Desk Metric 9: First Contact Resolution

The first contact resolution refers to the number of tickets that get resolved in the first contact. In other words, customers are not required to make subsequent contacts with your team to get their issues resolved, the first contact is enough. 

The ultimate business goal is to deliver a delightful experience to customers. Therefore, to make this a reality, you need to reduce customer effort and avoid making them persistently contact your business for a single issue.  

If your team sends delayed responses to customers or keeps them waiting, they may get frustrated and finally, leave you.

Note that a constantly low first call resolution (FCR) rate might signal an ineffective ticket reassignment process or agent training gaps.

Help Desk Metric 10: Rated Tickets

Rated tickets refer to those tickets that receive a rating from the respective customers once they have been resolved. With the help of rated tickets, you can better understand customer opinions about your service, gauge the success of your efforts, and discover improvement areas. 

Not every ticket that gets resolved will be rated by your customers. Therefore, you must share a survey at the right time to improve the response rate. 

Rated Ticket Help Desk Metric

A rated ticket offers data for specific questions such as- “Was our support representative able to resolve your issue today?”. You can also ask your customers open-ended questions such as- “Where would you like to see us improve?” or “how can we offer a better support experience for you in the future?”  

Help Desk Metric 11: Customer Satisfaction (CSAT)

Customer Satisfaction (CSAT) is a key help desk metric to monitor customer happiness. Customers are asked to fill out a small survey right after the conclusion of a conversation with a customer service agent or once a ticket has been resolved. 

Customer satisfaction ratings can help you see your support process through the eyes of your customers. 

Customer satisfication help desk matric

For instance, you can ask your customers a question like- “How would you rate your overall experience with us?“. Customers can either choose from a list of choices such as good, bad, moderate, etc. or simply express their sentiments on a scale ranging from 1 to 5. 

Help Desk Metric 12: Ticket Backlog

It is common for help desk managers to care the most about the backlog in their support queue. They don’t want their agents to be overloaded with piles of tickets. The right help desk tool allows them to keep a close check on the ticket backlog.

Incoming requests should not always be more than those that can be handled in a week.

Employing a help ticketing system that comes integrated with a knowledge base plays a critical role in automating ticket resolution. Customers can help themselves using the self-help center, and this significantly reduces the chances of any backlogs.

Read Also: How to Create a Knowledge Base: Step by Step Guide

Help Desk Metric 13: Agent Performance

Agent Performance help desk metric

The best part about customer service help desk software is that it gives specific data on the individual performance of agents. It is a must for managers to find out the top-performing customer support agents and those who need to improve.

A few agents may be ready to take on more customer support challenges, while others may require additional training and resources. This metric helps to learn if visitors are happy with your support experience, the average rating of a customer support agent, if the support rating improves over time, and much more. 

Read More: 31 Important Customer Service Skills

Help Desk Metric 14: Team Performance

Just like it’s important to measure individual performance, you need to measure the overall performance of your customer service team in order to see the bigger picture. This will allow you to see whether you are on the right track to achieving the end goal that the business had set for your team. 

“What gets measured gets managed.” – Peter Drucker

Every member of your team has a different role to play. However, with a help desk tool, they can easily collaborate and complement each other’s work. When you measure the team performance metric, you improve team cohesion and motivate your team members to achieve more together. 

Help Desk Metric 15: Agent Satisfaction 

While it is great to focus on customer happiness and satisfaction, you must also measure agent satisfaction from time to time. If your team members are overworked or unhappy, they won’t be able to deliver their best performance on a consistent basis.  

Lend an ear to your support agents to learn more about their concerns. Sometimes the people who support others need your support too. 

Keeping your agents happy and motivated should be an ongoing process. By measuring agent satisfaction, you can understand the challenges they face or what keeps them motivated to achieve more. You can use internal surveys to  ask them questions such as- “how motivated do you feel at the workplace?” or “Are you satisfied with the extent to which your skills and talents are being utilized in our team?

Read More: Why Employee Surveys is Still the Best Way to Measure Engagement

Measure Help Desk Metrics that Matter

Measuring help desk metrics is important to monitor your overall progress, track employee and team performance, and measure customer satisfaction. A help desk software comes with powerful reporting features that can offer you all the numbers you need to know. 

Remember that measuring each and every metric may leave you more confused than sorted. Therefore, you need to choose the right help desk metrics that are in sync with your business goals. ProProfs Help Desk offers incredible reporting features that help you track the key metrics from start to finish. 

Have More Questions? Here is Our FAQ Section 

Q1. How do you decide which help desk metrics are most valuable?

Every help desk metric is valuable and can reveal a lot about your performance. To choose the best help desk metrics for your team, ensure they align with your business goals and objectives.

Q2. How long should IT support tickets take to resolve?

Every IT or non-IT issue might consume a different amount of time to be completely resolved. Some common IT issues can be resolved using canned responses. Whereas other complex issues might have to be escalated to a tier-2 or tier-3 support. 

Q3. What are the common help desk metrics mistakes?

Most businesses make the grave mistake of capturing all the possible help desk metrics instead of focusing on the important ones. Your customer service team must also focus on the quality of support offered to customers rather than just relying on quantitative data. 

Q4. How to measure & improve the performance of your help desk?

Help desk software comes with reporting capabilities that allow you to measure your performance against key SLAs. To improve help desk performance, you must-

  • Prioritize the right help desk metrics & KPIs
  • Offer consistent training to your agents 
  • Resolve a majority of customer issues at the first contact
  • Collect customer feedback to improve your process

Q4. How does a service desk measure customer satisfaction?

With a service desk, you can share Customer Satisfaction (CSAT) surveys right after a ticket has been resolved. This will help you measure how happy customers are with your service quality.

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About the author

Jared Cornell

Jared is a customer support expert. He has been published in CrazyEgg, Foundr, and CXL. As a customer support executive at ProProfs, he has been instrumental in developing a complete customer support system that more than doubled customer satisfaction. You can connect and engage with Jared on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn

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