The Definition of Service Level Call Center: Everything You Need to Know

Greetings, dear reader! If you are looking to understand the concept of service level in the call center industry, then you have come to the right place. In this article, we will provide a comprehensive guide to defining service level in the call center, and its importance in delivering excellent customer service.

What is Service Level in a Call Center?

Before we delve into the details of service level in call centers, let us first understand what it is. Service level, in simple terms, refers to the percentage of calls that are answered within a specific time frame. In a call center, the service level is determined based on the speed of answer metrics, which measures the time taken to answer a call after it has been received.

Service level is an essential metric in call centers as it determines the effectiveness of the workforce in handling customer calls. It also plays a vital role in the overall customer experience, as customers expect their calls to be answered promptly and efficiently.

Why is Service Level Important in Call Centers?

The importance of service level in call centers cannot be overstated. Here are some reasons why:

  • Improved Customer Satisfaction: Customers are more likely to be satisfied when their calls are answered promptly and efficiently. High service level ensures that customers receive the desired support, leading to increased customer loyalty and retention.
  • Efficient Resource Utilization: High service level enables call centers to manage their resources efficiently. Optimized workforce ensures that the call center handles a high volume of calls promptly, reducing the waiting time for customers.
  • Cost-Effective Operations: High service level leads to increased employee productivity, which results in efficient operations. A call center with high service level can handle a higher volume of calls without compromising on the quality of service provided.
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How is Service Level Calculated in Call Centers?

The service level is calculated as a percentage of the total calls answered within a specific time frame. The industry standard for service level is typically 80/20, which means that 80% of the calls must be answered within 20 seconds.

The calculation formula for service level can be represented as follows:

Service Level Calculation
Number of Calls Answered Within a Specific Time Frame Service Level = ————————————– X 100 Total Number of Calls Received

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What are the different types of Service Level agreements?

There are mainly two types of service level agreements, internal and external. Internal SLA is an agreement between different departments of an organization to ensure that the service level requirements are met. External SLA is usually a contractual agreement between the call center and its clients, which specifies the service level targets that need to be achieved.

2. How can call centers improve their service level?

Call centers can improve their service level by taking the following steps:

  • Employing a sufficient number of agents to handle calls
  • Implementing an efficient call routing system
  • Providing agents with adequate training and resources
  • Using call center technology to optimize workforce management
  • Continuous monitoring and analysis of service level metrics

3. What is the average service level expected in a call center?

The industry standard for service level in call centers is typically 80/20, which means that 80% of the calls must be answered within 20 seconds.

4. What are the other metrics used to measure call center performance?

Other metrics used to measure call center performance include First Call Resolution (FCR), Average Handling Time (AHT), Abandon Rate, and Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT).

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5. What is the impact of poor service level on customers?

Poor service level can lead to increased customer dissatisfaction and loss of customers. Customers might perceive the call center as being unresponsive and may switch to competitors if the service level is consistently low.

6. How can call centers balance service level and cost?

Call centers can balance service level and cost by using workforce optimization software to forecast call volume and schedule staff for peak times. They can also consider outsourcing some of the calls to a third-party call center to reduce costs.

7. Can service level be improved without increasing resources?

Yes, service level can be improved without increasing resources by implementing call routing strategies that prioritize urgent calls.


Service level is a vital metric in call centers that measures the percentage of calls answered within a specific time frame. A high service level leads to increased customer satisfaction, efficient use of resources, and cost-effective operations.

To achieve a high service level, call centers must employ sufficient agents, implement an efficient call routing system, provide adequate training and resources to agents, and continuously monitor and analyze service level metrics.

We hope that this article has provided a comprehensive guide to understanding the concept of service level in call centers. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to reach out to us. Thank you for reading!


The information provided in this article is for informational purposes only. We do not guarantee the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any information provided herein, nor do we endorse any products or services mentioned in this article. The reader assumes sole responsibility for any actions taken based on the information provided in this article.

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