Beyond First Call Resolution

April, 2011

First call resolution has become the Holy Grail of customer service in recent years. But how has the advent of other media types such as SMS, email and chat changed this?

First call resolution has become the Holy Grail of customer service in recent years. Its benefits are well documented: improved quality, reduced costs and improved customer satisfaction, all at the same time. Sounds like a win-win, doesn’t it?

At a very simple level first call resolution just means that the customer’s objectives are met from a single contact event. This might mean doing so during a voice call or responding to an email that then satisfies the customer first time.

We are probably all agreed on this but before looking at the challenge of media types other than voice, exactly how successful has first call resolution been with voice calls, the traditional way of customers making contact?

We’d love to know, but we have a sneaking suspicion that many of the claims made for it are a bit stretched. Why? Because technology often just doesn’t deliver. It would be great to think that a first time voice call can be handled in its entirety by the first agent to pick it up. But there are many exceptions and often a call needs to be requeued. And that’s where the frustration starts! The second person to pick up the call doesn’t have the caller’s details and insists on asking for them again. That’s if you are lucky. Or systems just aren’t joined up so the caller has to call back or leave their details for a follow-up call. Still work to do on the technology front, then.

So how has the advent of other media types such as SMS, email and chat changed this? Hugely!

If the contact is offline, as in the case of email, then there is no scope for an immediate exchange of information to pin down exactly why the caller is making contact. Companies need new strategies for coping. But there is a common element here.

And that is providing simple and easy to follow guidelines (especially web-based) that callers can follow so that when they make contact, for example by email, they provide as much relevant information as possible.

We expect many different metrics to be used to measure how successful companies are in the future in satisfying their customers. The one key element they will all have is effective communication; explain what you offer clearly and make it easy for consumers to do business with you.

And by the way… Amazon, we love you.

What We Offer

Sytel Limited develops and supplies Softdial Contact Center® (SCC), offering multimedia, multichannel, fully blended cloud contact center solutions, for quick and easy deployment by partners offering CCaaS or enterprise users. All Sytel cloud components are secure, resilient and scale seamlessly from 10 agents to 10,000+, whether local, mobile or remote.

  • Flexible Contact Center Platform

    Softdial Contact Center™ – tightly integrated modules, designed to deliver at scale

  • Blended Media Desktop

    Fully customisable, multi-channel, multi-session workspace

  • Work Anywhere

    Browser-based tools, no software installation required

  • Cloud Or On-Premise, Multi-Tenant

    Scalable, resilient, secure, proven

  • Customise, Localise, White Label

    Design all user interfaces to individual requirements

  • Integration Via APIs

    ‘Swap out’ components and integrate with 3rd party apps

  • World Class Development

    Continuous evolution pushing technical boundaries


Softdial Contact Center™ (SCC) is designed to be flexible, extensible and scalable, integrating with any legacy equipment, and meeting the most complex of requirements.

  • All Media Types

    Voice, chat, email, social, etc – fully integrated and blended

  • Agent Multi-Tasking

    Work with multiple live contact sessions of any media type

  • Dynamic Media Blending

    Automated, ‘best available’ decisions to blend and balance work load across all media types

  • Predictive Dialing

    Best-of-breed performance under compliance

  • Intelligent Routing

    Smart rules and ‘best-available’ decisions to drive great customer service

  • Agent Scripts

    Help agents achieve and maintain excellence

  • Voice and Screen Recording

    See and hear exactly how agents are interacting

  • Analytics and Data Feeds

    Measure and evaluate performance at every level

  • IVR, Bots & Conversational AI

    Design effective automated flows or integrate with 3rd party providers

  • Customer Journey Tracking

    Stored customer contact history, to aid routing and add context to conversations


A complete suite of tools, with unique flexibility to extend and swap out modules to deliver a tailored contact center solution for any environment

  • Softdial One™

    Highly flexible unified web UI for agents, supervisors and administrators

  • Softdial Scripter™

    Create complex process flow scripts for agents, IVR, chatbots and other applications

  • Sytel AI Dialer™

    Best-of-breed predictive dialing under any compliance rules

  • Softdial Pathfinder™

    Precise routing rules for ‘best available’ connection

  • Softdial Media Server™

    Core telephony functions to manage all inbound/ outbound SIP calls

  • Softdial Reporter™ 5

    Fully customisable performance stats, charts and reports, across all channels

  • Softdial Publisher™

    Comprehensive data output to build your own reports

  • Softdial Recording Monitor™

    Audio and screen recording of agent activity to ensure the highest standards

  • Softdial Campaign Manager™

    Comprehensive configuration and control for outbound campaigns

  • Softdial Repository™

    Central storage and configuration of common resources

  • Sytel Global Compliance™

    Flexible ‘no contact’ rules to protect contact center and consumer


Performance and efficiency for a wide range of business applications

  • Customer Service

    Connect quickly to well equipped agents

  • Sales & Telemarketing

    Maximise agent productivity with best-of-breed predictive dialing

  • Healthcare

    Secure, highly-configurable multichannel communications for excellence in patient care

  • Market Research

    Best-of-breed predictive dialing with CATI integration

  • Collections

    Automated inbound/ outbound blending integrated with any debt management app