Faster Problem Resolution and FCR with Microsoft Dynamics CRM

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Ignify has a new blog written by Bhavesh Ashani, our Vice President of Customer Satisfaction, on how companies can improve problem resolution and first contact response with Microsoft Dynamics CRM. Check it out on our website or keep reading below.

According to J.D. Powers & Associates’ 2012 U.S. Credit Card Satisfaction Study, the year 2012 marks the third consecutive year of increased credit card customer satisfaction.

With 2012 marking the sixth year of this study, the report measures customer satisfaction with credit cards by researching six key factors: interaction; credit card terms; billing and payment process; rewards; benefits and services; and problem resolution.

The study found that overall credit card satisfaction in 2012 averages 753 on a 1,000 point scale, a significant increase from the 731 in 2011 and 714 in 2010. The 2012 results rank as the highest customer satisfaction levels since the study’s beginnings.

One of the key factors in boosting these customer satisfaction numbers is satisfaction with problem resolution – which gained a 31-point improvement. This increase reflects the efforts that credit card companies have made to improve the handling of their customer problems year after year. According to the report, “credit card issuers have reduced the average length of time to resolve problems in 2012 to four days from five days in 2011. In addition, the study finds that credit card representatives are more likely to provide time frames for resolution, and those time frames are more likely to be met in 2012, compared with 2011.

With problem resolution being such an important part of increasing customer satisfaction, having the right tool for keeping track of customer issues and solving them efficiently is crucial for improving customer service. With Microsoft Dynamics CRM, you get a comprehensive database for recording and storing customer problems and resolution, ensuring that you give your customers attentive, well-informed service and improve First Contact Resolution (FCR) – a key metric that can define the success of a customer service team.

And as the credit card industry shows, nowhere is customer service more necessary than the financial services industry. In fact, customer service is one of the most important factors in getting financial service institutions to differentiate themselves from the competition. By keeping close tabs on customer data and activities, financial companies gain the 360-degree visibility that supports excellent customer service and – an inevitable result – happy customers.

With Microsoft Dynamics CRM as a customer issue tracking software, customer service representatives gain an in-depth service database that enables them to keep close tabs on each client. With Microsoft Dynamics CRM’s rich dashboard functionality, customer service reps can see at a glance their case load, and the details associated with those cases.

Figure 1: Microsoft Dynamics CRM provides easy-to-understand, graphic data representations in the form of dashboards. Users can personalize their dashboard graphs for key KPIs and also select data that is related to their day to day tasks.

A Microsoft Dynamics CRM dashboard can be configured to display any of the data that is most important for a customer service rep to follow on a daily basis – such as case mix, case priorities, case resolution, case aging, etc. Microsoft Dynamics CRM’s dashboard functionality is particularly impressive in that not only can a representative create their own personal dashboard, but there is also the ability for dashboards to be created and applied across the company, across a specific department, applied to certain roles/individuals, etc. The right information is always placed at the respective person’s fingertips.

All the graphs display data real-time and can be drilled down into. For example, if a customer service manager wants to see information on what problems are being most frequently reported, he can simply drill down by clicking on the chart or relevant slice of a chart to view the underlying cases.

Figure 2: By clicking into the dashboard, a user is able to see the underlying cases and also a summarized chart showing the types of problems that are causing the cases to come up.

In this example, by getting insight into the type of problems that are most frequently recurring, a customer service manager can take proactive steps to work with other teams such as design and engineering and fix the problems that result in cases. For example, one of our customers, a bank, found by using charts in Microsoft Dynamics CRM that nearly 50% of their cases were related to online login and password issues. By redesigning the login page and improving usability, including adding automated ways to retrieve a password, Ignify was able to reduce the customer service costs by 45% and also improve customer satisfaction in the process.

But as a testament to the flexible, configurable system, you can change the information you would like to view in both the chart and the list by clicking the dropdown arrow above the chart and a host of other options appear – allowing you to analyze past history or current cases by whichever parameter you wish to view (see Figure 3). For example, you can see case load distribution by looking at customer cases by owner, or cases by source, e.g. email, phone, web, thus allowing you to understand which inbound channel to staff up for support. This ability to instantly view different data with inline dashboards enables you to get a summary of a lot of information and to gain greater insight very quickly.

Figure 3: Microsoft Dynamics CRM provides the ability to create custom charts and dashboards in seconds using whichever parameters you wish.

If you see in the list that there’s a particular case that you want to get more specific details on, or if there’s one you’re personally working on and need to edit or review, you can simply click on the individual case in the list and view the full case record. The case important information as the title of the case (the reason the customer contacted your company); what category the case falls under; the type of case it is (whether it’s a problem, a request, a question, etc.). Microsoft Dynamics CRM can automatically assign a case owner based on a set of rules, or leave this in a queue for the first available agent to pick it from the queue. In addition, Microsoft Dynamics CRM can automatically create follow-up activities such as a customer satisfaction survey or a follow up phone call (see Figure 4).

Figure 4: Rich details on a case including how the case originated, priority, and hints with potential knowledge base articles can help solve the problem and improve First Contact Resolution (FCR).

A particularly helpful feature of Microsoft Dynamics CRM is the availability of a knowledge base – in other words, a database containing articles on how to troubleshoot customer problems. With this knowledge base, you and your team members are able to write and upload helpful how-to guides on fixing customer problems. Having this database is especially helpful for common questions or issues – by instantly accessing an article that explains how to fix a problem step-by-step, a representative can provide a quick resolution to the problem, which puts the company in a very positive light with the customer.

What makes the knowledge base really powerful is the ability to automatically recommend knowledge base articles based on the case specifics and past incident history, as shown in Figure 4. This can help customer service representatives improve both resolution time and improve probability to get the case resolved at first contact, thus pushing up FCR and customer satisfaction.

Figure 5: Microsoft Dynamics CRM’s knowledge base provides customer service representatives with a wealth of instantly accessible, highly informative articles on solving customer issues or questions.

No customer likes to be kept waiting for an answer or a problem resolution – and with Microsoft Dynamics CRM, they don’t have to. If you have any questions about Microsoft Dynamics CRM or how it can help improve your company’s customer service response time, please email us at

Sandeep Walia is CEO at Ignify. Ignify is a technology provider of CRM, eCommerce and ERP software solutions to businesses and public sector organizations. Ignify has been included as the fastest growing business in North America for 5 years in a row by Deloitte, Inc Magazine and Entrepreneur Magazine and ranked as one of 100 most innovative companies in the world in the Red Herring Global 100 in 2011.

by Ignify, California Microsoft Dynamics CRM Partner

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