Organizations want to provide the best possible support to their customers. Several metrics can help them analyze trends, forecast future demand, and optimize support team resources to provide better service. Understanding metrics leads to data-driven decisions. As Francis Bacon said, "Knowledge is power."
There are best practices and strategies to consider for improving this service desk KPI and predicting future workload — obviously barring unforeseen events like the COVID pandemic.
Keep reading to learn more about Ticket Volume — the metric, not our podcast —, why it is essential, its pros and cons, best practices, and strategies to improve its KPI — and an extra gem!
Ticket Volume definition
Ticket Volume refers to the number of tickets a support team receives over a certain period. A ticket, in this context, is a customer request or inquiry that needs assistance or resolution from the company's support team.
Tracking it is crucial for businesses, particularly those in the service industry, as it provides insights into customer demand and helps manage resources accordingly. By analyzing this indicator, companies can determine the busiest periods, identify the most common issues, and allocate resources to address them effectively.
Why is Ticket Volume a relevant help desk metric?
Ticket Volume is critical for any help desk or customer support team because it offers useful data on customer demand, team performance, and resource management. Here are some reasons why it is a relevant metric.
Helps in determining the team's workload
Tracking Ticket Volume can help support teams determine their workload and how many resources are required to handle incoming requests. By monitoring this metric, businesses can identify peak periods, allocate resources accordingly, and avoid overburdening their team members.
Monitors team performance
Organizations can determine how effectively their team resolves customer issues by comparing Ticket Volume to the number of tickets resolved. They can also identify areas where the support team may need additional training to improve performance.
Identifies the most common issues
Analyzing this indicator can help businesses identify the most common issues their customers face. Organizations can use this information to prioritize which problems to address first and improve overall customer satisfaction.
Helps in forecasting future demand
Businesses can predict future demand by looking into Ticket Volume trends and proactively planning resources accordingly. This can help them prepare for busy periods and ensure they have enough resources to handle incoming requests.
How to calculate Ticket Volume with InvGate Service Desk
You can count on InvGate Service Desk to quickly calculate the Ticket Volume. To do so, you must follow these steps:
- Determine the period - The first step to calculate Ticket Volume is to determine the period for which you want to calculate it. It could be a day, a week, a month, or any other period that makes sense for your organization.
- Count the number of tickets - Next, compute the total requests received during the period. InvGate Service Desk calculates the number of tickets automatically!
You’ll find this metric in your dashboard as “Total requests.” If you want to further analyze your performance, you can filter the requests by status, priority, category, help desk, and agent.
What is an acceptable Ticket Volume?
When it comes to Ticket Volume, there isn't a one-size-fits-all benchmark. The optimal sum will depend on various factors unique to each organization. Consider the following when evaluating it:
- The organization's size - Smaller organizations may have lower Ticket Volume than larger ones simply because they have fewer customers or clients.
- The complexity of tickets - Not all tickets are equal. Some may be simple, one-off requests, while others may be complex technical issues that require significant time and resources.
- Trends over time - Rather than focusing solely on a specific number, tracking Ticket Volume over time can help identify trends, such as seasonal fluctuations or changes in customer behavior, which can then be used to plan support strategies.
- The industry standards - While there isn't a set benchmark for this metric, comparing similar organizations in the same industry can be helpful. It can provide a sense of how the organization performs relative to its peers.
Pros and cons of measuring Ticket Volume on a help desk
While measuring Ticket Volume is vital for any help desk or customer support team, there are also pros and cons to consider when using it. Here are some of the advantages and disadvantages of focusing on this metric.
Pros of measuring Ticket Volume
1. Provides insights into customer demand
Measuring Ticket Volume calculates customer demand and helps businesses understand how many support requests they receive. Organizations can use this information to forecast future demand and allocate resources accordingly.
2. Helps in identifying trends
Analyzing Ticket Volume over time can help businesses identify trends and patterns in customer behavior. Organizations can use this information to improve customer satisfaction by addressing common issues and providing better support.
3. Aids in resource allocation
Tracking Ticket Volume helps businesses allocate resources more effectively by determining when to increase or decrease staffing levels. It can help them avoid overworking team members and ensure that the team handles customer requests promptly.
Cons of measuring Ticket Volume
1. It may not reflect the complexity of customer issues
Measuring Ticket Volume does not always account for the complexity of customer issues. Some support requests may require more time and resources than others, so businesses must also consider the specificities of certain problems when analyzing this metric.
2. It can be misleading
Tracking Ticket Volume alone can be misleading. A high amount may not necessarily indicate poor performance or low customer satisfaction. It could simply mean that a company is growing or experiencing a seasonal spike in customer demand.
3. It may not capture all customer interactions
Ticket Volume does not represent all customer interactions with a company. Customers may contact businesses through social media or live chat, which are not always recorded as support requests (on this note, InvGate Service Desk tracks as tickets every request submitted by the platform itself or all the communication channels associated with it, like Microsoft Teams or email).
5 Ticket Volume metric best practices
When measuring Ticket Volume on a help desk, following best practices to ensure accurate and actionable data is essential. Here are some to keep in mind.
1. Use a consistent definition of a ticket
Defining what qualifies as a ticket ensures accurate and consistent tracking and analysis. For example, is an email from a customer requesting help considered a ticket? Should social media mentions be included?
2. Choose an appropriate time frame
You should track Ticket Volume over a period reasonable for your business needs. For some businesses, monitoring it on a daily basis may be too granular, while a monthly basis may be too broad. Choosing an appropriate time frame ensures you're gathering meaningful data to help you make informed decisions.
3. Compare Ticket Volume to team size
Comparing Ticket Volume to team size can help businesses understand if they have enough resources to handle incoming requests. If the indicator is consistently high and team size is small, it may be time to consider adding more resources.
4. Analyze Ticket Volume trends over time
Analyzing trends over time can help businesses identify patterns and make informed decisions. For example, if it spikes during a particular time of the year, companies can prepare for this increase in demand by allocating resources accordingly.
5. Use it in conjunction with other service desk metrics
Even though it is a crucial metric, you should track Ticket Volume along with other metrics such as resolution time, customer satisfaction, and first contact resolution rate. Combining these metrics can help businesses gain a more comprehensive understanding of their support team's performance.
How to improve the Ticket Volume KPI
Improving the Ticket Volume KPI can help businesses streamline their support team's workload, increase customer satisfaction, and optimize their resources. Here are some ways to do it.
1. Implement self-service options
Implementing self-service options can help customers resolve issues without having to contact support. Service catalogs and knowledge bases can help reduce the number of tickets received and assist businesses in managing their resources more effectively.
2. Identify and address common issues
Analyzing Ticket Volume data can help businesses identify and address common issues that customers are facing. By tackling them proactively, companies can reduce the number of tickets received and improve customer satisfaction.
3. Optimize support processes
Optimizing support processes can help businesses resolve tickets more efficiently, which can reduce the number of tickets received. This can include improving communication processes, automating repetitive tasks, and providing training and support to team members.
4. Provide proactive support
Providing proactive support can help businesses identify potential issues before they become tickets. It can include sending out alerts and notifications to customers, providing educational resources, and monitoring social media for mentions of the brand.
5. Measure and analyze team performance
Measuring and analyzing team performance can help businesses identify areas where teams may need additional training or support. By doing so , companies can solve tickets more efficiently and reduce the number of tickets received.
Measuring Ticket Volume is critical for any help desk that wants to improve customer satisfaction and optimize its resources. By tracking this metric, businesses can gain insights into their support team's workload, monitor their performance, and identify areas in need for improvement.
However, it's essential to follow best practices and continually apply strategies to enhance the Ticket Volume KPI, such as:
- Implementing self-service options.
- Identifying and addressing common issues.
- Optimizing support processes.
- Providing proactive support.
- Measuring and analyzing team performance.
By following these strategies, businesses can track Ticket Volume accurately and use the data to make informed decisions that improve customer satisfaction and support team performance.