customer service
11 min read

Managing and Improving Service Quality with Key Performance Indicators

How to set up KPIs in your customer support team?
Written by
Kinga Edwards
Published on
April 10, 2024
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How do you know if your customer service is living up to customer expectations? The answer is in KPIs, or key performance indicators. There are plenty of different KPIs you can use to measure customer service and the success of your business’s customer support.

Don’t have time to read an entire blog post right now? No worries. Get a free copy of the full list of customer service KPIs here.

1. First Response Time

First response time (FRT) is the average amount of time it takes for a customer to receive an initial response to their support ticket or a no reply email.

For live chat, it’s the average amount of time it takes for a customer to receive an initial response from an agent. If the customer has to wait a while before an agent is available to chat, the chat widget should display a message letting the customer know how long they can expect to wait.

FRT is one of the most important customer service KPIs to measure. Responding to customers quickly shows them you care about their time and that you’re committed to helping them solve their problems. It can also help prevent customer frustration from boiling over and turning into a larger issue. Having a team of experienced executive assistants, will ensure an optimal first time response.

2. Average Ticket Resolution Time

The average ticket resolution time is a measure of how long it takes your support team to resolve customer issues. This KPI helps you assess your team's efficiency and productivity.

To calculate the average ticket resolution time, add up the total time it took to resolve all of your customer tickets and then divide that number by the total number of tickets. The result is your average ticket resolution time.

You can also calculate average ticket resolution time for individual agents. This can help you identify any agents who may need additional training or support. Productivity tracking tools are a great resource if you’re looking to help team members become more efficient and stay on top of work.

3. Customer Satisfaction (CSAT)

You can’t have a conversation about customer support without talking about customer satisfaction. It’s the most direct way to measure how well your support team is serving your customers’ needs.

CSAT is a survey that’s typically sent to customers after a support interaction. It asks them to rate their level of satisfaction with the service they received. CSAT surveys are simple and straightforward, making them a quick, easy way to get feedback from customers.

The survey usually consists of a single question, such as “How would you rate the support you received?” Customers then select a rating from a predetermined scale, such as 1-5 or 1-10.

4. Net Promoter Score (NPS)

The Net Promoter Score (NPS) is a widely used customer loyalty metric that measures how willing your customers are to recommend your business to others. This metric is based on a simple survey question that asks customers to rate how likely they are to recommend your business on a scale of 0–10.

Customers who give you a 9 or 10 are considered “promoters,” while those who give you a 7 or 8 are considered “passives.” Customers who give a score of 6 or lower are considered “detractors.” To calculate your NPS, subtract the percentage of detractors from the percentage of promoters.

NPS is a great way to gauge overall customer satisfaction and loyalty. It’s also a good indicator of how well your customer support team is performing. A high NPS score is a sign that your customers are happy and that your support team is doing a great job. A low NPS score, on the other hand, is a red flag that something is amiss and that you need to take action to improve your customer support.

5. Customer Effort Score (CES)

CES measures the amount of effort customers have to put into getting their questions answered and problems solved. Customers are asked to rate their level of effort on a scale from 1 to 7, with 1 being “very little effort” and 7 being “a great deal of effort.”

The average score is then used to calculate a single, overall CES score for each customer service interaction. The lower the score, the better the customer service experience.

CES is a great KPI to use to measure your team’s performance and identify areas where you can make the customer service process easier.

6. Ticket Volume

Ticket volume is the total number of support requests your team receives over a specific period of time. This metric can be used to measure the overall health of your customer service team and to determine how well your customers are being served.

It’s important to keep an eye on your ticket volume to make sure your team is able to handle the number of requests that come in. If ticket volume is consistently high, it could be a sign that your team is understaffed. On the other hand, if ticket volume is consistently low, it could be a sign that your team is overstaffed.

One of the best ways to keep track of your ticket volume is to use a help desk or customer support software with built-in reporting and analytics features. This will allow you to easily track the number of tickets your team receives and to quickly identify any trends or patterns.

7. Ticket Backlog

If your team is inundated with support requests, you'll need to keep an eye on the ticket backlog. This metric tells you how many tickets are currently open and unresolved.

When the backlog gets too big, it can lead to longer wait times for customers and put a strain on your team. That's why it's important to monitor this KPI and take steps to reduce the backlog when it starts to get out of hand.

8. Self-Service Support Metrics

Self-service support is a win-win for your customer support team and your customers. It allows your team to focus on more complex issues while providing customers with a quick and convenient way to find answers to their questions.

There are a few different metrics you can use to measure the success of your self-service support channels. First, you can track how many customers are using your self-service channels and how often they’re using them. This can give you a good sense of whether or not your self-service content is helpful and relevant.

You can also track how long it takes for customers to find the information they need using your self-service channels. This can help you identify any gaps in your self-service content and make improvements where needed.

9. Contact Deflection Rate

Contact deflection is the act of using self-service and automation tools to help customers find answers on their own, without having to contact your support team.

When your team is able to deflect potential support inquiries through self-service automation, they can save time and resources for more complex issues. This is a win-win for both your team and your customers.

To calculate your contact deflection rate, use the following formula:

Total Number of Inquiries Handled by Self-Service and Automation Tools / Total Number of Inquiries

Multiply the result by 100 to get the percentage.

For example, if your team handled 1,000 inquiries in a month and 300 of those inquiries were handled by self-service and automation tools, your contact deflection rate would be 30%.

This metric is a great way to determine how effective your self-service and automation tools are at helping customers find the answers they need.

10. First Contact Resolution

First Contact Resolution (FCR) is a measure of how many customer issues are resolved in a single interaction with support. The goal is to have as many cases as possible resolved without needing to follow up.

This is an important indicator of how efficient your support team is. It’s also a good way to gauge how well they’re doing at understanding and addressing customer problems.

To measure FCR, you’ll need to track how many cases are resolved in a single interaction and compare that number to your total number of support tickets. You can also survey customers after they’ve interacted with your support team to ask them if their issue was resolved.


The customer support team is the front line of your business. They are the ones who are talking to customers day in and day out, and as a result, they have the ability to make or break your business's reputation. To ensure that they are making it, you need to arm them with the right tools and monitor the right metrics. After all, happy customers are the ones who stick around and refer others to your business, so it's well worth the investment.


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