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What is Inbound Calls Average Speed of Answer?

Inbound call Average Speed of Answer or ASA is a frequently used term in Inbound Call Centers. It is a measure of the average time that it takes an inbound call center agent to answer a call during a specific period of time. Typically, it includes the time that the callers have to spend waiting in an invisible queue; however, it does not take account of the time that it takes for the callers to browse through the Interactive Voice Response (IVR).

In a call center, ASA is a Key Performance Indicator (KPI). It is calculated as:

Average Speed of Answer = Total Waiting Time for Answered Calls (in sec)/Total Number of Answered Calls

For e.g.:

Let us assume that there were 200 callers on a particular day and the total waiting time for all callers was 2 hours

So, total waiting time in second = 2*60*60 =7200

Total number of callers = 200

Therefore, ASA =7200/200 =36 seconds

This implies that on that given day it took a caller 36 seconds, on an average, before his call was answered by the call center agent.

ASA is often used as an approximation of customer satisfaction. To understand the effect that ASA on customer satisfaction, call center managers also conduct an outlier analysis and analyze abandonment rate. Call centers have set a permissible range for ASA. It is advisable to keep the ASA low and in that range. High ASA not only impacts customers/callers, but it also has negative effects on a call center.

High ASA is often related to:

·       Poor customer satisfaction

·       High abandonment rate

·       Decreased call center efficiency

·       Increased handle time

·       Surge in escalated calls

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