This is a new series of Salesforce Service Cloud Consultant certification exam preparation series - Industry Knowledge. Industry Knowledge section consists of 10% of total score in the exam, covering topics such as key contact center metrics, KPIs, business challenges, contact centers and business drivers, knowledge base and etc. Without further ado, let's get into it!

NOTE: This post is written in April 2020 and content might be changed/updated overtime. The content is inspired by

Guideline for Industry Knowledge

  • Explain the factors that influence key contact center metrics, KPIs, and business challenges.
  • Explain the use cases and benefits for different interaction channels.
  • Compare and contrast the different types of contact centers and their business drivers (help desk, product support, telesales, service, field service/depot repair, B2C, B2B, etc.).
  • Identify the benefits of a knowledge base.

Key Contact Center Metrics, KPIs, and Business Challenges

Key Contact Center Metrics

Key Contact Center MetricDescription
First call resolutionThe percentage of calls that are solved with one interaction with an agent (without call transfer, escalation, or respond to customer at a later time)
Average handling timeThe duration of a transaction with a customer (call talk time, hold time, time spent of related tasks)
Number of calls/cases handledDetermine the productivity and cost per agent
Average waiting timeThe time waiting for an agent
Abandonment ratePercentage of callers or chats that disconnect before connecting to an agent
Customer satisfaction (CSAT)Percentage of customers that are satisfied with their support experience based on survey results
Cost per callTotal cost to run call center and calls
Up-sell/cross-sellTotal revenue generated during an interaction with customers
Customer retentionEnsure customer is still satisfied with the service provided

Key Performance Indicators (KPI)

Customer satisfactionFirst call resolution with indication of customer satisfaction
Cost of serviceThe cost of service for handling customers
Revenue generatedCross-sell/up-sell during interaction with customers

Business Challenges

Business ChallengeDescription
High employee turnoverImprove workplace flexibility, setup employee retention and recruitment program
Low customer satisfactionIncrease first call resolution rate, provide quality answers and quicker answer times
Low revenue generatedConduct agent training, increase customer retention rates, and provide tools and instill knowledge to agents
Forecast and planningFind out how many agents are needed in demand, alternative solutions to manpower such as chat robot
Cost related issuesIncrease agent productivity, decrease agent headcounts

Interaction Channels

  • Website
    • Complexity: low to medium
    • Urgency: low to medium
    • Efficiency: medium
    • Availability: high
    • Costs: low
      • customer self-service does not involve agent support as they can resolve cases on their own
    • Advantages:
      • create case from the website for case team
      • customers can access knowledge base articles and search for solutions themselves
      • article written once, support everyone all time
  • Social Media
    • Complexity: low to medium
    • Urgency: low
    • Efficiency: low
    • Availability: high
    • Costs: low
      • no extra cost for social media support
    • Advantages:
      • reach out to customers via social channels such as Facebook, Twitter and etc.
      • broadcast announcement and important notice to more audience
      • create case from social media posts
      • generate valuable insights about products and services
      • make it easier and more convenient for customer to connect with companies
  • Online Chat
    • Complexity: low to medium
    • Urgency: medium - no need to resolve so urgently
    • Efficiency: medium
    • Availability: medium
    • Costs: medium
      • each agent can handle multiple chats at a time
      • share knowledge base articles with customer, resulting in quicker resolutions, lesser callbacks needed, and hence lower cost in general
    • Advantages:
      • lower waiting time (lesser time needed to accept a new chat)
      • use pre-defined template to respond quickly
      • attach knowledge base articles to solve issues quickly
      • create case from live chat interaction
      • more convenient in certain scenarios, such as online purchase
      • alternative real-time support channel available to customers, lessen the burden of phone support
  • Phone
    • Complexity: high
    • Urgency: high - needs to be resolved immediately
    • Efficiency: high
    • Availability: low to medium
    • Costs: high
      • each agent can only deal with one call at a time
      • agent training is required to improve productivity
      • cost of phone system and telephony integration
    • Advantages:
      • customer's issue can be resolved quickly
      • real-time interaction with human
      • response to customer's concern or complaint directly before they are escalated in low customer satisfaction
      • higher customer satisfaction
      • trust and connection with customers
  • Email
    • Complexity: low
    • Urgency: low
    • Efficiency: low
    • Availability level: low to medium
    • Costs: high
      • each agent must respond to each email individually
      • back and forth communication elongates the support efficiency
      • agent training is not that required, hence reduce overall cost
    • Advantages:
      • use pre-defined template to respond quickly
      • schedule response to email during business hours
      • create case from email for case team
      • allow longer time to prepare for response
      • take time to response (no urgency)
  • Paper
    • Complexity: low to medium
    • Urgency: low
    • Efficiency: low
    • Availability: low
    • Costs: high
      • each agent needs to deal with each item of paper and create return correspondence
      • more time and effort in preparation for the paper support
    • Advantages:
      • customer's hand signature is required, ex: legal documents
      • can be used to serve a broader base of customer, including those who have no emails or access to other channels.

Contact Center

  • Customer Service Call Center
    • handles inbound calls from customers related to any kind of inquiries or requests
    • also handles inbound interactions via other channels, ex: online chat, email
    • Examples:
      • customer service, products, billing, policy, claims, order processing, returns, refunds, inquiries and etc.
      • complaints about product or service
      • basic website assistance
      • other customer service related requests
      • (technical) tech support
      • (technical) troubleshooting
      • (technical) installation or implementation
      • (technical) field service tracking
    • Business drivers:
      • increase customer satisfaction
      • decrease cost of service
      • reduce employee turnover
      • increase agent performance and productivity
      • optimize adherence to schedules and procedures
  • Sales and Marketing Call Center
    • handles outbound calls for telemarketing and telesales purposes
    • responsible for generating and qualifying leads to generate revenues
    • Examples:
      • telesales
      • cold-calling
      • market research
      • promotions
    • Business drivers:
      • increase number of leads that can turn into opportunity
      • increase upsell/cross-sell
      • increase revenue
  • Internal Call Center:
    • handles inbound calls from employees for all sorts of purposes
    • Examples:
      • help desk (general supports)
      • reach out to different departments, such as accounting, HR, and etc.
      • emergency cases, urgent issues
    • Business drivers:
      • reduce time taken to resolve issues
      • increase agent productivity
      • increase agent availability
      • reduce communication cost

Knowledge Base

  • Knowledge Centered Support (KCS) is a methodology that encourages and supports the capturing, authoring, structuring and publishing of knowledge to assist in solving support issues.
  • Benefits:
    • increase first contact resolution and decrease time resolution
    • call defelection due to the customer success using self-service
    • issues are resolved more quickly as similar questions are displayed and agents can find answers quicker
    • agent training time is decreased
  • Basic concepts:
    • Integration
        • creation content as a byproduct of solving problems, capturing common questions and issues
      • can be used internally or by customers
      • maintenance of knowledge is integrated into resolution process
    • Evolution
      • knowledge is evolved based on demand, usage and feedback from customer interactions
    • Knowledge Base
      • knowledge base is based on collective experience to date
    • Rewards and Collaboration
      • agents are rewarded for sharing, collaborating and improving the knowledge base
  • Principles:
    • Abundance
      • knowledge is created as knowledge should be shared, not kept to individuals
      • quality of knowledge depends on the knowledge team size
    • Create Value
      • knowledge is created as a by-product of solving customer's issues
    • Demand Driven
      • knowledge is created as a result of interactions with customers
    • Trust
      • influenced by mutual trust between employees and the company
      • employees are motivated and willing to create and share knowledge with others

That's all for this chapter. A relatively short post but there's more for you to learn and explore! Thanks for reading!

Post was published on , last updated on .

Like the content? Support the author by!