How to set customer service OKRs: 12 real world examples + the most important metrics

Natalie Smithson
AI enthusiast | Tea addict | Focused on using AI assistants to win the working week
Customer service goals success

To establish customer service Objectives and Key Results (OKRs) you’ll need to define measurable goals, like reducing response times and improving resolution rates. Make goals SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-bound) to avoid ambiguity, and track progress continuously to keep teams motivated.



Setting and measuring objectives is an important part of running any successful business. Your focus becomes clear, employees can be more motivated, and it gives your business something to aim for. Since customer satisfaction is directly linked to revenue growth and retention, your role as a customer service leader is critical in setting initial Objectives and Key Results (OKRs) for your team.

With that in mind, we’ve got plenty of customer service OKR examples in this post and we’ll show how they’re used in practice.

With an increasing list of priorities, it’s hard to know how to choose the right OKRs, but if you’re ready to dive in, here’s how to cut through the noise to set strong objectives for customer service success.


  • Customer service OKRs are typically set quarterly, but you can set them annually or bi-annually if it suits your business better
  • OKRs are meant to be agile and flexible, so they can be adjusted as needed, based on feedback or to reflect any changes to your operation
  • You’ll put an emphasis on different goals, depending on whether you’re a startup or established brand, and working in retail, travel, leisure, a local council or something else
  • Write SMART objectives: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-bound
  • Don’t forget to report on your progress as teams are proven to be more motivated to achieve OKRs

What are Objectives and Key Results (OKRs)?

OKRs is a goal-setting framework that’s designed to encourage transparency, focus, and accountability. OKRs are made up of two parts:

  • Objectives: High-level goals you want to achieve. They give you direction and focus as a company, as a team, and as individuals.
  • Key Results: These are the measurable steps you’ll take to achieve your objectives. They help track your progress and determine whether the objective has been achieved or not.
Image shows Objectives with a bold O + Key Results with a bold K and R

Customer service OKRs are typically set quarterly, but you can set them annually or bi-annually if it suits your business better. They’re meant to be agile and flexible, so they can be adjusted as needed, based on feedback or to reflect any changes to your operation. The ultimate goal of OKRs is to help focus your efforts on what matters the most, so you can achieve the most meaningful results.

Selecting the right customer service OKRs for your business

Choosing the right customer service OKRs helps improve customer satisfaction, increase revenue and build a loyal customer base, and keeps your teams on track to achieve them, continuously improving their performance. Get your customer service goals right and you’ll be able to demonstrate how customer service can drive substantial business results. You’ll put an emphasis on different goals, depending on whether you’re a startup or established brand, and working in retail, travel, leisure, a local council or something else.

If you’re struggling to choose the right objectives for your organisation, you’re not alone. The options can be overwhelming and knowing how to measure them can feel equally challenging.

Help is here 🎉

How to write OKRs and why you should make them SMART objectives

To avoid ambiguity when writing OKRs, always make them SMART objectives.

SMART is a widely used system for setting objectives and stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-bound. It’s particularly easy to track progress on SMART objectives as they’re designed to give clarity on whether or not you achieve your goal. If you don’t measure how well you’re doing, it’s easy to wander off course or miss your target altogether, and nobody wants that.

As you decide which goals are best for your customer service operation, consider every element of a SMART objective in turn:

  • Specific: Have you clearly defined what you want to achieve? Be highly specific about the exact outcomes you want to see and use action-oriented language like “we will do X”.
  • Measurable: Have you defined how you’ll measure progress? Set clear metrics and targets that you can easily track, so you know if you’ve achieved the objective or not.
  • Achievable: Are your objectives challenging but achievable? Before you make a final decision, make sure you have the necessary resources, skills, and knowledge to meet the objective.
  • Relevant: Do your objectives fit in with wider company goals? They should stay relevant to your customer service team but also sit in line with goals for the rest of the business too.
  • Time-bound: Have you set a deadline or timeframe for achieving your objectives? Make sure the amount of time you’ve allocated is realistic to keep people motivated right to the end.
Image shows each character S M A R T in red, with the word it represents underneath: Specific Measurable Achievable Relevant Time-bound

An example of a SMART objective is: “Increase our customer satisfaction score by 10% within the next 6 months by introducing a customer feedback programme that addresses common complaints.”

This objective is specific (increase satisfaction score), measurable (by 10%), achievable (introduce a feedback programme), relevant (address complaints), and time-bound (in 6 months). It clearly defines what needs to be achieved, by when, and shows how you’ll measure progress.

12 examples of customer service OKRs and how to measure them

The amount of customer service objectives you could choose to focus on is seemingly endless. Instead of starting with a blank sheet of paper, here are 12 example objectives to get you started. For each one we’ve included examples of how these might look in practice as an OKR, where “KR = Key Result. 

Or you can skip ahead to the next section and the top three most important metrics.

1. Increase customer satisfaction

Customer satisfaction is key to the success of any business, which is why it’s always listed first. 

Surveys are a great way to track customer satisfaction as you can use them to measure your Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT), usually on a scale of 1-10 where 10 is most satisfied. Maintaining a high score indicates customers value your service and are more likely to buy again or recommend you, which can increase more profitable sales.  

Example OKR

Annual objective: Increase average CSAT score by 2 points vs last year (eg. shift from 6 to 8) 

KR1: Increase average monthly CSAT by 0.5 per quarter (eg. set quarterly incremental targets that move you towards your objective in stages; list initiatives that could have the biggest impact then prioritise the workload) 

KR2: Reduce number of low scores (1-3) by 20% each quarter (eg. set quarterly reduction targets for low scores by listing the root causes and prioritising how to fix them)

KR3: Maintain a minimum CSAT survey completion rate of 50% to maintain a valid sample size

2. Improve customer retention

Customer retention is valuable to every business because it’s more cost-effective for an existing customer to buy more products and services from you than it is to acquire a brand new one. Retained customers can turn into deeply loyal customers, more open to marketing messages about complementary goods and services and more likely to recommend you to others. 

The Repeat Purchase Rate (RPR) is one way to measure retention and captures the percentage of your customers who make a repeat purchase from you over a set period of time.  

RPR = Total Repeat Customers ÷ Total Customers x 100  

Example OKR 

Objective: Use customer services to double RPR during peak Christmas trading season 

KR1: 100% of positively resolved enquiries include exclusive offer or promotion to be redeemed before Christmas (eg. work with marketing to surprise and delight, or cross sell products and services during the time period of the objective) 

KR2: Maintain exit survey scores on existing customer contact >7.5 (eg. shift resource to focus on keeping existing customers happy) 

KR3: Complete peak Christmas trading training for 98% of customer service agents 

KR4: Increase the percentage of existing customers getting an immediate resolution to an enquiry

3. Enhance customer loyalty

Beyond a second purchase, you want to establish ongoing, long-term relationships with your best customers. Providing excellent customer service, listening to customer feedback and resolving customer issues quickly helps achieve this. You could also put in place a loyalty scheme or informally offer rewards, exclusive incentives, events or other benefits that are off limits to non-customers. 

Measuring customer loyalty can be done in many ways but segmenting existing customers into groups of increasing loyalty and value is a popular way to do it (known as Customer Lifecycle). You could also put in place a loyalty scheme or informally offer rewards, exclusive incentives, events or other benefits to keep people coming back to your brand.  

Example OKR 

Annual objective: Create 1000 VIP customers with the successful launch of a loyalty scheme and best in class customer service support 

KR1: Loyalty initiative messaging rolled out to all FAQs, agent scripts and live chat by launch date 

KR2: Complete loyalty scheme training for 98% of customer service agents  

KR3: Set and rollout new improved customer service benchmarks for VIP enquires 

KR4: 30% top performing agent time allocated to VIP loyalty initiatives

4. Increase customer engagement

To build strong customer relationships, it helps to create a consistent and meaningful feedback loop with appropriate touchpoints and strong levels of engagement. This isn’t always as simple as forcing more and more opportunities to engage ― it needs to be at a time when the customer is in the right mindset to give you the most valuable insight.  

Measuring engagement at the most relevant points of the customer journey can give you valuable insights into your customer needs and preferences, identify opportunities for improvement, and grow loyalty simply by giving people what they really want, rather than what you think they want. This bodes well for customer satisfaction, retention, and sales. It doesn’t have to cost a fortune either, you can increase engagement on a shoestring budget.

Example OKR 

Annual objective: Use best practice customer experience to maintain Customer Engagement Scores (CES) above 80% 

KR1: Implement real-time customer feedback loop to take average CES from 60% to 80% by the end of Q1 

KR2: Reduce touchpoints with low customer engagement by 20% (eg. identify gaps in customer engagement where CES is at its lowest and prioritise workload to improve) 

KR3: Create monthly customer focus group for deep dive insights into customer paint points starting in Q2 

5. Enhance customer experience

If you want to see how you’re meeting objectives like customer satisfaction, retention and loyalty as a whole, use customer experience as an umbrella objective to improve all of these overall.  

You can add metrics like Net Promoter Score (NPS), which measures the likelihood customers will recommend your business to others, and Customer Effort Score (CES) to measure how easy it is for them to do business with you. CES is especially helpful for identifying areas where you can simplify processes and reduce friction for customers to improve the overall experience. 

Example OKR 

Annual objective: Create 5% impact on sales by improving customer experience across the board, hitting specific KR targets every quarter 

KR1: Increase NPS +10 points vs last year (eg. 60 vs 50) in Q1 and maintain across the year 

KR2: Increase CES by 5% vs last year (eg. 75% to 80%) in Q1 and maintain across the year 

KR3: Conduct customer touchpoint gap analysis on end-to-end customer journey in Q3 to identify roadmap for next annual OKRs 

6. Increase customer Lifetime Value (LTV)

Focusing on customer experience helps build relationships with customers so strong they can last for years, increase repeat business, and cement brand recognition. When customers keep coming back to you it improves LTV. This represents the total amount of revenue a customer is expected to generate for your business over the course of your relationship.  

To measure LTV, you typically multiply the average purchase value by the number of purchases per year and then multiply that figure by the average length of the customer relationship. If you have a loyalty scheme, you can also look at the transaction history for customers on the scheme and work out their average spend across a set period of time. 

Example OKR 

Annual objective: Use customer experience to raise LTV across newly acquired customers 

KR1: Achieve quarterly increases in NPS and CES for newly acquired customers 

KR2: Implement real-time customer feedback loop to understand pain points and improve customer satisfaction scores by 10%  

KR3: Launch new retention initiative in Q3 to decrease churn by 55% 

KR4: Increase conversion and/or service upsell across existing customer contacts by 5%

7. Improve customer service speed

A faster service helps to create a positive impression of your company and can lead to an increase in customer satisfaction. Customers who get their problems solved quickly are more likely to come back to you because of that positive experience.  

To measure the speed of your service, monitor the average First Contact Resolution (FCR). This is the percentage of customer issues resolved on the first attempt, and the First Response Time (FRT). FRT is how long it takes for a customer to receive a response from your customer service team, starting from the moment you first receive their enquiry. To calculate your average FRT, take the sum of all your response times and divide it by the total number of enquiries you received in a given space of time. 

Example OKR 

Quarterly objective: Recover FCR back to 90% benchmark by end of Q1 

KR1: Double successful self-serve enquires (eg. improve self-serve user journey and improve FAQ based on latest customer insight) 

KR2: Launch 24/7 contact and with AI driven automation (eg. tackle impact of weekend backlog/FRT during closing hours) 

KR3: 80% enquires with immediate FRT across all channels  

8. Optimise customer service channels

You’ll likely have a number of different customer service channels to manage, so optimise each of these to give the best customer experience possible. Make your processes as efficient as you can and eliminate any bottlenecks that disrupt or delay your service.  

It’s important to offer a wide range of options for customers to use when they’re looking for help, so they can use the channel they feel most comfortable with. “Fish where the fish are” is more effective than trying to direct people back and forth; simply meet your customers where they already are. Knowing which channels and touchpoints your customers favour makes this easier. And remember, it’s easy to open a channel and much harder to close one, so part of your optimisation process should be clarifying which channels will be most effective for your brand before you launch into them. 

Example OKR 

Quarterly objective: Review engagement and cost effectiveness of customer service channels and create optimised budget and roadmap for the new financial year 

KR1: Evaluate existing channel performance and budget vs benchmarks and industry best practice  

KR2: Week 2 – action new plan across internal teams and with new suppliers  

KR3: Full switch over to new tooling and process completed by the end of the month 

KR4: Measure before and after impact, with monthly reporting on new benchmarks vs last year 

9. Develop customer service automation

To speed up your process and improve customer service efficiency, you can quickly and affordably introduce AI automation. Using an advanced AI assistant to answer customer queries instantly helps reduce customer wait times and increase customer satisfaction. It also frees up your customer service teams to focus on solving more sensitive or unusual customer enquiries. Quickly, this can lead to improved customer service, increased customer loyalty, and more efficient operations.

Example OKR 

Quarterly objective: Free up agent capacity by automating 80% of enquiries with an AI assistant 

KR1: Week 1 – complete AI training with FAQs and highest volume enquiries 

KR2: Week 2 – complete stakeholder roadshow and customer service team training  

KR3: Week 3 – launch 24/7 AI assistant across web and social  

KR4: Week 4 – measure before and after impact, with monthly reporting on new benchmarks vs last year 

10. Improve customer service personalisation

A next-gen AI assistant speeds up delivery of customer support, but also gives your customers more control over their service. Use it to give people the flexibility to self-serve and at any time of the day or night, since an AI assistant doesn’t need rest, holiday or sick days. It’s always working, so you can offer a 24-hour service that’s convenient for customers to help increase their satisfaction whether they’re using your website, your app, or other channels.

Example OKR 

Annual objective: Increase CSAT and 5% long term uplift on sales by launching personalisation  

KR1: Sign off new customer segmentation and product roadmap in Q1 

KR2: 90% of agents complete training on personalisation by end of Q1 

KR3: Launch personalisation initiatives in Q2 

KR4: Measure before and after impact, with monthly reporting on new initiatives vs last year 

11. Improve customer service quality

If you have a high number of complaints, you could focus your objective on reducing that number. Simply measure the number of complaints you receive now and watch the number fall as you work on improving the quality of your service. Use customer feedback to show you where to focus ― especially for product improvements, where nothing is more helpful than direct feedback from the people using it. 

Example OKR 

Quarterly objective: Reduce number of customer complaints by 25% from next quarter onwards 

KR1: Audit and prioritise list to tackle biggest drivers of complaints (eg. prioritise short term issues that can be addressed within the next 4 weeks and focus workload on the biggest impact) 

KR2: Launch AI assistant to provide 24/7 coverage and immediate response on 75% enquiries 

KR3: 90% of agents to complete new training with focus on addressing the hardest complaints, increasing response times and deeper satisfaction resolution 

12. Focus on customer service data analysis

Data is everywhere, so long as you’re tracking your results consistently. Using the insights you collect from measuring progress, you can identify areas for improvement, develop better products and services, and ultimately provide better customer service. You’ll soon start to see which initiatives are making the biggest difference to customer experience and how improving on one goal can help improve another. 

Example OKR 

Annual objective: Transform data-led decision making across the full customer support team 

KR1: Launch automated weekly, monthly, quarterly reporting rhythm charting progress vs business goals and key metrics by the end of Q1 

KR2: Shift to integrated AI assistant to automate real-time customer data (eg. securely plug different data points across the business into customer handling) in Q2 and measure uplift on key metrics 

KR3: 90% of agents to complete training in data driven decision-making 

KR4: +80% team respond positively to “I use data every day to improve the service I give to customers” in quarterly staff survey by Q3

Top tip: The 3 most important metrics

We know a long list of ideas is helpful, but can also be overwhelming and sometimes you just want to be pointed in the right direction. So to give yourself the strongest advantage, our top tip is to start tracking CSAT (customer satisfaction) today. Then measure your speed of service to check for efficiency by tracking FRT (first response time) and FCR (first contact resolution).

Image shows an up arrow alongside

As customer satisfaction and efficiency improve, you’ll want to know how this impacts your customer service budget. Use the metric Cost Per Resolution (CPR) to see how much every customer enquiry costs your business. This is the total cost of your customer service operations divided by the number of enquiries you successfully resolved over a certain amount of time. The cost should come down as satisfaction and efficiency go up.

Using an AI assistant can help radically improve your results by capturing customer feedback in real time, giving customers instant responses to enquiries, and offering a 24 hour service.

Don’t forget to report on progress : )

It’s hugely motivating for your teams to hear how you’re doing. Setting SMART goals for your teams can lead to a real sense of accomplishment and satisfaction for everyone involved. McKinsey research found: “When done correctly, goal-setting can help improve employee engagement in a way which elevates performance and benefits organizations overall”.

Tracking progress along the way can help reinforce the importance of the objectives you’ve set and encourage continued effort. Send a report to the leaders of your organisation, showing your goals and achievements, and be sure to celebrate every success along the way with everyone involved.

  • Discuss progress in your weekly team meeting
  • Create a weekly or monthly customer service report
  • Include highlights of your progress in your company newsletter
  • Reference your OKRs and progress regularly
  • Circulate and celebrate impressive stats with visualisations

Choose the right OKRs for your customer service teams, track the most important metrics, and make a big deal of your accomplishments, and you might be surprised how fast or effectively you can achieve them.


What are OKRs?

OKRs are a goal-setting framework that consists of two parts: objectives and key results. Objectives are high-level goals, while key results are measurable steps taken to achieve those goals.

Why are OKRs important for customer service?

OKRs help improve customer satisfaction, increase revenue, and build a loyal customer base. They also keep teams on track and continuously improving their performance.

How do I choose the right customer service OKRs for my business?

Consider specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART) objectives when choosing customer service OKRs. Make sure they align with wider company goals and are challenging but achievable.

What is CSAT and why is it important to track?

CSAT is a customer satisfaction score and it is important to track because it gives you an idea of how happy your customers are with your service or product. By tracking CSAT, you can identify areas where you need to improve and make changes to keep your customers happy.

What is FRT and FCR and why are they important to track?

FRT stands for first response time and FCR stands for first contact resolution. Both are important to track because they measure the efficiency of your customer service team. FRT measures how quickly your team responds to customer enquiries, while FCR measures how often your team is able to resolve enquiries on the first contact.