Every business wants to provide the best services and make its users happy.  To do that, you need to keep your customer support performance up to the industry standard.

Modern users expect quick and effective service. In a Helplama survey, we discovered that a significant proportion – 45% of consumers broke business relationships with a company because their issue was not resolved within the same day. 

So, you regularly need to measure where your customer experience stands against these modern users’ expectations. For this, help desk metrics can be invaluable. They give clarity on performance and help in avoiding potential issues.

But before I introduce you to helpdesk performance metrics, let’s understand what are helpdesk metrics and why you need to measure them.

What are service desk metrics?

Help desk metrics are measurements that track the performance of customer support efforts and measure user satisfaction. With these measurements, you can improve your strategy and allocate resources efficiently to offer better customer support.

Why are help desk metrics important?

When using the helpdesk services, there can be a lot of data that needs to be filtered. In order to ensure that you are efficiently delivering the best possible service, you need to know which metrics are more applicable.

If you monitor help desk reporting metrics, then it helps your business with:

  • Increasing transparency,
  • Optimizing its performance reporting and management,
  • Revealing common challenges, and
  • Identifying opportunities for improvement.

Now, without wasting any time, let’s learn the 11 helpdesk performance metrics that you need to measure for your business.

11 Key Helpdesk metrics you should analyze

#1 Ticket Volume

The number of support tickets that your business gets refers to the ticket volume.

Your IT service management and customer service team should monitor the incoming support tickets or service requests. At any given time, you can view the ticket volume managed by your service team in user support or helpdesk software.

With the ticket volume report, you can sense how many tickets your team can handle in a month, week, or day. With this information, you can know how many support agents you need to handle the requests.

In short, this IT service desk metric is important in planning staff activities.

#2 Ticket Volume by Support Channel

It is not enough to measure how many tickets are coming and going. You need to understand where these tickets are coming from to know where to improve your strategies in infrastructure.

For example, if you are getting more tickets from email rather than social media, then you can focus on training your team to handle email tickets or you can educate your users about other options.

You can measure this metric by using the software that you use for ticket volume. Or else you can keep track of the tickets generated in each channel by maintaining a report. Then create a bar graph like the one below to gain insights.

Image source – datapine

Tracking ticket channel usage is important:

  • To optimize the efficiency of your service team,
  • To know the quality of each resolution,
  • To understand where you may need to train or hire staff.

#3 Support Tickets Opened Vs Closed

Support tickets opened/ closed is one of the important help desk reporting metricsIt measures your progress throughout a specific time period. 

In an ideal service desk, the number of tickets opened should be parallel to the number of tickets solved. By monitoring this metric you can make sure you are keeping up with the demands.

Image source – datapine

Any IT service management or customer support software will certainly measure this metric, so you may not need any help tracking this help desk reporting metric.

In any case, if you don’t have this feature available, you can use the simple formula to measure it. That is,

Required percentage = (tickets solved / tickets opened) x 100

With this, you can calculate the percentage of tickets that your staff leaves open at the end of each day/ week/ month, etc.

#4 Ticket Distribution

If you are using customer service software, then it is useful to add category tags to your tickets. By doing this, you can monitor the service tickets to operate requests faster and remove any blockages in ticket routing operations.

Image source – datapine

You need to analyze this service desk reporting metric regularly to see which categories are receiving more tickets and evaluate how they are distributed. For instance, increased tickets in specific categories may indicate a need for adding or expanding the existing knowledge base.

The ticket distribution metric is especially helpful if your company’s ticket management processes vary by department such as human resources, applications, hardware, etc.

You can calculate the ticket distribution metric by using the below formula.

Percentage for category1 = (no. of tickets generated for category1 / total number of tickets received) x  100

#5 Response Time

Here, we have 3 categories to understand.

  1. First Response Time – is the time between a support request being created and action being taken by the service desk team.
  2. Average Response Time – is the average of the first response time of all support tickets taken daily, weekly, monthly, or yearly.
  3. Requester Wait Time – is the accumulated time that a support request is being worked on. That is, the time a service ticket remains unresolved.

Note that you can use KPI tools such as datapine for measuring all three response time categories.

Image source – datapine

The longer the first or average response time is, the more you risk customer satisfaction. Most of the time people want at least an acknowledgment that someone is looking into the matter within a reasonable amount of time after submitting the request.

Having less response time while offering consumer service will help you in gaining trust among users.

Note that it is always a good idea to keep realistic expectations for your help desk and its customers. Instead of hiding wait times that take more than normal time, if you are transparent about them, most people will be understanding.

#6 Resolution Time

Resolution time is one of the important help desk KPIs (Key Performance Indicator). It is the average time taken to resolve a service ticket.

Image source – datapine

This service desk KPI tells you how long a customer has to wait and how long an employee takes to resolve the issue. That is why it is an important factor in the overall customer experience.

It is another reason to try to reduce response times as it also includes the time taken by a helpdesk agent to first respond to a ticket.

You can calculate this helpdesk performance metric as follows:

Average Resolution Time = Total Resolution Time for all tickets solved in specified time / No. tickets solved in the same time frame.

#7 First Contact Resolution

This service desk reporting metric refers to the tickets that are resolved on first contact with the service agent.

So, to improve your customer experience, you need to increase the number of first contact resolutions done by your support agent. The result is that the customer gets an answer quickly and effortlessly.

Image source – datapine

Simultaneously, first contact resolution improves your efficiency as fewer support agents touch the ticket.

First contact resolution calculation:

No. of tickets resolved first time / total no. of tickets handled.

#8 Backlogs

Backlogs are key service desk SLA metrics that you need to consider. If your service desk agents are cumulating more tickets than they can resolve within a specified time period, then they are building backlogs.

The cause for ticket backlogs could be:

  • rise in support issues,
  • lack of accountability,
  • understaffing of the service desk team,
  • not closing tickets even after they are resolved and so on.

Here is an example ticket backlog table that you can use to record your backlog rate:

Over time, the backlogs not only reduce response time but also lower customer satisfaction rates. It can also overwhelm your support agent and increase turnover.

Arranging Chatbots or automated workflow or even providing a robust knowledge base could be an efficient solution to this service desk SLA metric. You can also proactively encourage and support your service agents.

#9 Predicted Backlogs

Predicted Backlogs help you to prepare for the future based on your experience with backlogs.

Being able to know which staff or teams are falling behind, as well as the anticipated increase or decrease in ticket volume can help you to plan and allocate resources accordingly.

#10 Customer Satisfaction Ratings

Customer satisfaction (CSAT) is very important to customer service and IT service desk metrics. You can mail out feedback surveys to your users and track their responses to calculate the CSAT percentage.

The CSAT score impacts your sales and revenue, so a reduction in this score should be rectified quickly.

Image source – researchgate

Understanding the voice of customers could be the best way to improve customer satisfaction. By maintaining and exceeding consumer expectations you can boost customer retention.

#11 Support Agent Performance

To provide successful customer support your help desk employees are important. So you must monitor their performance and provide additional training to the individual who requires it.

Tracking the team members’ performance will help you in optimizing the staff allocation. For instance, you can allocate agents with better performance rates to the department where ticket volume is high.

Remember to offer additional benefits to the individual who performs well in serving the customers. If your team members are happy in their roles, then they are more likely to go above and beyond to offer a satisfying service to customers.

Try the helpdesk with real-time reporting

Equip your team with help desk software that provides real-time reporting like  Helplama Helpdesk software. It provides up-to-the-minute reports on the metrics, allowing users to measure and maintain support performance in real-time.

Furthermore, it provides all the support features that help desks usually provide, and here are some of the key features that make it unique:

  • It’s the ONLY help desk that allows automating the training and testing of agents.
  • You get to recruit experienced customer support agents through the Helplama marketplace.
  • You can also view all the customers’ history including important events and messages in a single platform.
  • The ONLY help desk with marketing automation – collects user reviews and UGC across various review platforms. 
  • If you’re in e-commerce, it allows you to automatically track delays and issues with customers’ orders and proactively resolves the situation. Moreover, you get an automated self-service center for returns and exchanges.

Wrapping Up,…

Hopefully, you must have understood the need to estimate service desk metrics from this article.

According to Peter Drucker, “You can’t improve what you don’t measure”. So, monitor, analyze, and report the appropriate helpdesk metrics.

Remember that by measuring the service desk reporting metrics, you can improve user service & satisfaction and boost your support team’s success.

If your Help desk software doesn’t provide real-time reporting, try the Helplama helpdesk for 15-days for free!