Choosing the Proper Workforce Management Solution
Deploying a workforce management solution is just plain common sense in most vertical markets, but the call center is a particularly good candidate. Fraught with high turnover rates, massively fluctuating call cycles based on all sorts of variables and much maligned for poor service and quality control, the call center is practically crying out for a solid workforce management solution.
Choosing the proper solution requires some legwork and assessment, but the positive benefits are well worth the effort. When analyzing any type of workforce management solution for the call center, there are several items that need to be considered. A good product will include forecasting, which ensures the proper number of agents with the correct combination of skill sets is staffed for every shift, every single day. This is a tricky prospect since call rates can fluctuate so wildly, but proper staffing eliminates waste as well as poor service quality due to understaffing.
A comprehensive workforce management solution will collect, review and process call data over the short and long term to accurately forecast staffing requirements. This information is obviously useful for scheduling as well, and will account for time spent on calls as well as other responsibilities outside of call handling. A good product will also account for adherence to schedules, monitoring and recording agent login and logout time as well as time spent on breaks.
Additional considerations when choosing a workforce management solution for the call center include how well it can handle and monitor intraday forecasting and schedule management. This includes items like planning, controls and deployment strategies that are integral parts of call center management. Monitoring this information helps managers plan pre-emptively rather than reacting to situations after quality has already begun to suffer.
Exception handling is a final consideration when choosing an offering, and a good solution will manage and process exceptions as well as communicate all the pertinent information to all parties involved. That means accepting or rejecting each exception based on predetermined criteria to provide quality control and help maintain good communications between agents and managers.
These are just a few of the important factors that should be considered when selecting a workforce management solution for the call center. By ensuring the proper technology is in place, managers can keep their facilities running smoothly and efficiently while gleaning maximum productivity from agents on a consistent basis.
Edited by Alicia Young