This study assesses the impact your call quality monitoring program has on your customer satisfaction and first call resolution performance!

Most contact centers assume their call quality monitoring practices are helping them improve their first call resolution (FCR) and customer satisfaction (Csat) performance. However, this assumption is seldom validated from a customer point of view. SQM’s research also shows that 95% of contact centers have a formal call quality monitoring program and the average contact center monitors 6 calls per CSR per month. SQM’s groundbreaking research on call quality monitoring’s impact on FCR and Csat shows that there is very little correlation between call quality monitoring ratings and FCR and Csat ratings. Specifically, our study shows that only 20% of CSRs’ call quality monitoring ratings have a positive correlation to FCR and Csat ratings. Based on the fact that most call quality monitoring practices have little or no impact on FCR and Csat and given that call quality monitoring is very expensive, it is essential that you evaluate your call quality monitoring program to assess what impact your call quality monitoring program has on FCR and Csat and to determine what is needed to improve your call quality monitoring practices. At SQM, we believe the only way to ensure your call quality monitoring practices are helping your contact center achieve high levels of FCR and Csat is to use your FCR and Csat survey ratings and to link those ratings to your call quality monitoring ratings at the contact center, management and CSR levels. This study assesses the impact your call quality monitoring program has on your FCR and Csat performance and provides recommendations on how to improve your call quality monitoring practices.

Why Participate in SQM’s Call Quality Monitoring FCR Impact Study

SQM delivers:

  • Independent third-party assessment of your call quality monitoring practices
  • A proven process to examine whether your call quality monitoring practices have a positive impact on your FCR and Csat performance
  • Accurate assessment of your call quality monitoring practices, FCR and Csat performance and potential cost savings
  • Benchmarking comparison to over 500 leading North American contact centers
  • Benchmarking comparison to peer group, contact center industry and world class contact center

Top 5 Reasons to Improve your FCR and Csat Performance

Reduce operating cost – for every 1% improvement in FCR, a contact center reduces its operating costs by 1%. If a contact center is performing at the FCR contact center industry average of 70%, it is important to understand that, potentially, 30% of customers will have to call back because their issue was not resolved on the first call. It is also important to note that for the contact center industry average, it takes 1.5 calls to resolve a customer’s inquiry or problem yet for customers who do not achieve FCR, it takes on average, 2.5 calls to resolve their call. This is an enormous opportunity to reduce a contact center’s operating costs as repeat calls represent 23% of the average contact center’s operating budget.

Improve Csat – for every 1% improvement in FCR, there is a 1% improvement in Csat (top box response). Clearly, FCR is highly correlated to Csat. In fact, of all the contact center internal or external metrics, FCR is the metric with the highest correlation to Csat. The absence of FCR is the strongest driver of customer dissatisfaction. In fact, as previously mentioned, Csat (top box response) drops, on average, 15% every time a customer has to call back to get their initial call resolved. In other words, if a customer had to call in three times to get their call resolved their Csat (top box response) would be 30% lower than a customer who had their call resolved on the first call.

Improve Esat – for every 1% improvement in FCR there can be a 1% to 5% improvement in Esat. Contact centers with high FCR tend to have high Esat. Conversely, contact centers with low FCR tend to have low Esat. The level of stress is very high for the CSR who handles the second or third call from a customer whose issue was not resolved on the first call. Increasing FCR improves both Esat and Csat. The bottom line is that when customer calls are consistently resolved on the first call, Esat can increase substantially, especially for low FCR performing contact centers. Most contact center managers connect to the concept that high Esat can provide high Csat/FCR, but it also goes the other way in that high Csat/FCR can provide high Esat.

Increase opportunities to sell – when a customer’s call is resolved, it increases the customer cross-selling acceptance rate by up to 20%. SQM’s research shows that the customer’s needs must be resolved before the CSR has earned the right to move on to any type of sales activity. If the CSR cross-sells before the inquiry or problem is resolved, the customer typically becomes irritated and feels that the organization is pushing its needs, rather than serving the customer’s needs. As a result, the fundamental customer relationship is undermined.

Reduce customers at risk – only 2% of customers who have their call resolved on the first call expressed their intent not to continue to use the organization’s products and services as a result of their contact center experience. However, if the call is unresolved, 19% of customers expressed their intent not to continue to use the organization’s products and services as a result of their contact center experience. The cost of customer defections as a result of their contact center experience tends not to be understood by contact centers because it is not often measured. For many contact centers, retaining customers represents the biggest opportunity to add true value to their organization. Resolving calls is the key to reducing customers at risk. In fact, for every 2% improvement in FCR there is a 1% improvement in call resolution which results in helping the contact center retain customers.

Call Quality Monitoring FCR Impact Study Methodology

Our Call Quality Monitoring FCR Impact Study has 5 phases:

Phase 1
Post-call surveying
The contact center sends a list of calls that have been either recorded by your call quality monitoring system or have come from your telephone system. SQM will then conduct 400 post-call phone surveys. All surveys are conducted by SQM’s telephone survey representatives within 1 day of the customer’s call to the contact center. SQM then gives you a list of customers surveyed.

Phase 2
Rating the monitored calls
You have two options in this phase. If you sent us a list of calls that have been recorded you would then rate the 400 calls that SQM surveyed using your contact center’s call quality monitoring form. If you sent us a list of calls from your telephone system, you would only need to rate calls using your call quality monitoring form at the same time that SQM would be surveying your customers.

Phase 3
Analyzing the ratings
We take your call quality monitoring ratings and your survey ratings and assess whether your call quality monitoring has an impact on FCR and Csat.

Phase 4
Analyzing call quality monitoring practices
An SQM consultant interviews call quality assurance evaluators, managers and representatives to get feedback on strengths and weaknesses of your call quality monitoring practices. In addition, SQM will assess your call quality monitoring form, policies, standards and reporting technology.

Phase 5
Reporting the results
SQM will produce a comprehensive Call Quality Monitoring FCR Impact Study report within 5 business days of completing call quality monitoring evaluation and customer surveys. A SQM senior consultant will present the Call Quality Monitoring FCR Impact Study report findings at your contact center.

Call Quality Monitoring FCR Impact Study Report Deliverables

A 75 page Call Quality Monitoring FCR Impact report will be delivered to you and your management team via a conference call or on site with a senior SQM consultant.

Specifically, SQM’s Call Quality Monitoring FCR Impact Study will deliver the following:

  • Comparison of your call quality monitoring results to your FCR and Csat results
  • Strengths and weaknesses of your call quality monitoring practices
  • Assess if your call quality monitoring is primarily focused on customer or company needs
  • Determine if your call quality monitoring measures are weighted properly
  • Assess if you have the appropriate call quality monitoring scoring ranges and scales
  • Assess if your call quality monitoring is providing good value for your money
  • Determine potential cost savings if you improve call quality monitoring effectiveness
  • Recommendations on how to improve your call quality monitoring practices

Other deliverables from the Call Quality Monitoring FCR Impact Study:

  • Provide FCR/Csat ratings and contact center benchmarking comparison ratings for your contact center
  • Determine what call quality monitoring metrics are most important to your customers
  • Provide targeted opportunities for your contact center FCR and Csat improvements

Call Quality Monitoring FCR Impact Study Timeline

We recommend no longer than one month for this project to be completed. Often the longest part of the process is for your staff to complete 400 call quality monitoring ratings.

However, keeping a tight timeline on the process ensures that the focus and momentum is not lost.

Your Investment


The total investment for the Call Quality Monitoring FCR Impact Study is $12,000 plus applicable taxes. The only additional charge would be to cover travel and accommodation expenses for a SQM senior consultant to present the results to you and your team on site.