Contact Center Terminology, Part II


If you have ever been around a subject matter expert, they’ve likely dropped a word or acronym you’ve never heard of. The contact center world is filled with these! To help you , we’ve put together a glossary of common contact center terminology. This is designed to make it easier to speak the language and understand how this business works.

1. Automatic call distribution (ACD)
ACD or automatic call distribution (or distributor) is software that queues and routes incoming phone calls. A key role of an ACD is producing intelligence for a contact center and an understanding of opportunities for performance management improvements.

2. Average speed to Answer (ASA)
Average speed to answer, or ASA, is the measurement of how quickly your contact center responds to an incoming request – whether it’s a call or a chat or an email – from a customer. (ex: the call center handled 9000 calls today with an ASA of 48 seconds)

3. Average Handle Time (AHT)
Talk time + wrap-time = handle time. The average handle time for a contact center agent is the total time spent talking on calls divided by the total number of calls for a specified time period. (ex: 500 minutes / 40 calls = 12.5 minute AHT) This metric is especially important for customers  who pay by the minute. Internally, most clients on this type of plan require a 6-8 minute AHT but it really is dependent on the requirements of each campaign.

4. Business Process Outsourcing (BPO)
Business process outsourcing is the contracting of a business task, such as customer service or HR, to a third-party provider. Usually, BPO is implemented as a cost-saving measure for tasks that a company requires but can be done more efficiently through outsourcing.

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