Self-service rate, also known as self-service completion rate, is a key performance indicator (KPI) used to analyze the effectiveness of a help desk or support team by measuring the percentage of issues that users are able to troubleshoot on their own. Generally, this means that a customer is able to resolve a problem with available support tools without the personal assistance of a support professional. This rate can be calculated by comparing the number of sessions users initiate with a company's knowledge base versus the number of issues the support team handles over the same timeframe.
An example of a self-service IT solution is if a user forgets their password and is locked out of their account. If an available tool allows the user to reset their password, they are able to unlock their own account without contacting support. Other content that helps increase self-service rates include support documentation, start-up guides, answers to frequently asked questions (FAQ), self-help portals and tips within programs.
Recent customer feedback studies show that consumers prefer to troubleshoot issues on their own rather than speak to a support agent. Therefore, having a high self-service rate is ideal for most companies because it creates a better, quicker user experience and saves money on service desk and IT costs.
A related metric to the self-service rate is the self-service bounce rate, which measures the frequency that website visitors cannot find the information they are looking for on their own and are forced to choose a different support channel. Measuring this is important to understand the gaps in a customer's support documentation and whether or not current documentation is effectively solving the problem.