Are user tickets piling up in the help desk’s ticketing queue? Are help desk agents missing response and resolution SLAs? Are your customers dissatisfied with the quality of service offered?
If yes, you need to find out what is going wrong and optimize processes to improve customer experience. As you can only improve what you measure, the first step would be tracking help desk metrics.
Your team could be busy handling a mountain of tickets, but are they being effective? These metrics will let you know how your team performs and overall customer satisfaction.
You can utilize this data to understand problem areas, issues, and opportunities. Business users can then make process or policy changes to ensure customers have a positive experience.
These metrics can be universally used, whether it is an in-house service team or an outsourced service desk.
Top 5 IT Help Desk Metrics You Should Track
1. Ticket Volume
How many tickets does your help desk team receive at any given time period? The time period could be a single shift, day, week, month, or longer.
This data can help you understand when the team receives the most tickets and how you can schedule shifts and effectively utilize resources. For example, if your team generally receives maximum tickets during office hours, your help desk team should be staffed with more employees during the day compared to after hours.
You can further analyze the data to know what type of tickets are included and if you can provide better and quicker resolutions. For example, you can create detailed documents on self-service portals for known applications or access issues.
2. Response Time
Response time is the time between a support ticket being created and the first documented action taken by the help desk agent. For example, the agent could provide the resolution steps if it is a known issue. Or, if the issue needs investigation, let the customer know you are working on the ticket.
Today, customers are demanding when it comes to customer service. Prompt action is the expectation. If they do not know what is happening with their ticket, they do not receive any updates, and the help desk agent resolving their issue will not be enough. The customers may still rate the experience as poor.
You can promote a practice within the help desk team wherein agents should first acknowledge tickets when they receive an assignment. Then, let the customer know, ‘We have received your ticket and are working on it.’
You can define response SLAs depending on the ticket’s priority and then measure if the team is meeting the SLA. For example, an agent should respond to a priority 1 ticket within 30 minutes of the ticket being assigned to the queue. In the case of a priority 3 ticket, you could lower the response SLA to 12 to 24 hours.
3. Resolution Time
This metric tells you how long the help desk agent takes to resolve an issue successfully. Like response SLAs, you could have SLAs set for resolution as well. For example, priority 1 tickets could have a resolution time of four hours. Priority 3 tickets could have resolution SLAs of 3 to 5 days.
Similar to ticket volume, it is important to consider the type of tickets and their resolution steps. For example, a password reset could be a priority 3 ticket, so could be a laptop performance issue.
A password reset is a known issue; closing the ticket may take less time. On the other hand, a laptop performance issue will take troubleshooting efforts to identify and rectify issue.
So, when measuring an individual agent’s performance, along with the resolution metric, consider the type of simple and complex they deal with to gauge the full extent of their performance.
The data can also be utilized to optimize the resolution process and update the IT system. For example, for a recurring complex issue, your tech support team could find a solution at the code level, improving the efficacy of the IT system.
4. Customer Satisfaction
The quality of your help desk’s service can determine if the customer will remain loyal to your business. For example, according to a HubSpot Research report, 93% are more likely to buy from a company that provides excellent customer service.
So, this metric lets you know how well your help desk performs and how satisfied the user is with the experience. You can set automated customer surveys to be sent out after a ticket is marked successfully.
You can ask customers to rate certain aspects of the help desk and provide opinions on improvement areas. In addition, you can use loyalty points or discounts to encourage participation in customer surveys.
In case of poor customer ratings, you can walk through the ticket to understand how your team can improve as a whole.
5. Tickets Opened vs. Tickets Resolved
You should keep track of how many tickets are opened and closed from a period perspective. This will let you know the volume of work available and how effectively your help desk handles it.
In an ideal scenario, the number of tickets opened and closed should be parallel. However, if there are way too many open tickets than the ones being closed, it could indicate a staffing issue.
Combined with the resolution metric, you can analyze why tickets take longer to be resolved. For example, is it the issue’s complexity, or does your help desk process need a revamp?
Other IT Help Desk Metrics You Can Track
Here are some other help desk metrics you can explore:
- Ticket by support channel
- Ticket distribution
- First call resolution
- Resource utilization
- Resource performance
Help desk metrics provide an accurate way of measuring your team’s performance. The top 5 metrics include ticket volume, open tickets vs. closed, response and resolution time, and customer satisfaction.
The insights gained from these metrics can help you make system and process changes and improve overall customer experience.