Equiniti’s “Wow” moment with Calabrio Teleopti and Business Systems - Calabrio

AT A GLANCE:

COMPANY: Equiniti

INDUSTRY: Financial and Administration Services

PRODUCTS USED: Calabrio Teleopti WFM

THE CHALLENGE:

Due to the complex nature of their business, Equiniti were looking for a flexible system that would help them achieve efficient utilization of their CEC workforce and improve employee engagement particularly around shift patterns and preferences.

THE SOLUTION:

Equiniti introduced preference-based scheduling to a trial team, the results were positive in terms of service levels and employee engagement, Equiniti plans to roll preference based scheduling out further through 2019.

Equiniti’s “Wow” moment with Calabrio Teleopti and Business Systems

CASE STUDY: Equiniti

One of the areas Equiniti wanted to improve on was employee engagement, so they introduced preference-based scheduling to a trial team, the results were positive in terms of service levels and employee engagement.

OVERVIEW

Founded in 2007 from the Share Registration business of Lloyds TSB, Equiniti Group plc is a British-based outsourcing business focused on financial and administration services. Listed on the London Stock Exchange and a constituent of the FTSE 250 Index, Equiniti is the UK’s leading provider of share registration services and associated investor schemes with a turnover of £406 Million in 2017.

Equiniti act as Registrar for over 700 companies, including around 55% of the FTSE 100, managing around 24 million shareholder accounts. They also provide administration services for employee share plans, pensions and employee benefits schemes. They have over 4,000 employees of which 400 are based in the Customer Experience Center (CEC).
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Key requirements

Due to the complex nature of their business, Equiniti were looking for a flexible system that would help them achieve efficient utilization of their CEC workforce and improve employee engagement particularly around shift patterns and preferences.

Equiniti offers telephony services to multiple clients across multiple products and therefore required a tailored solution. It needed to empower their Resource Planning team, so they were able to make efficient client and skill-specific resourcing decisions. They also wanted to align to their lean objectives and identified that a more sophisticated workforce management solution was needed to support dynamic shift patterns and preferences. Equiniti also needed a solution that would support their back-office functions, WebChat and social media interactions.

Choosing Calabrio Teleopti

Equiniti was using a solution that was ‘end of life’ and the incumbent supplier was no longer providing support. They looked at upgrading their current solution, but it was a costly option and didn’t provide them with the flexibility and complex scheduling functionality they required.

Simon Thompson, Equiniti’s Operations Planning Manager identified that a new workforce management solution was required and turned to Business Systems as they were already a long standing customer with a trusted history together. After several workshops and discussions the Resource Planning team at Equiniti decided that Teleopti from Business Systems was the right solution to help them make more informed customer and skill specific resourcing decisions.

THE SOLUTION

Preference-based Scheduling

One of the areas Equiniti wanted to improve on was employee engagement, so they introduced preference-based scheduling to a trial team, the results were positive in terms of service levels and employee engagement, Equiniti plans to roll preference-based scheduling out further through 2019. This allows the agent to input their shift preference via MyTime, the agent portal. This can be processed either via their desktop or mobile device (using the app). Once the agent has entered their preferences, the scheduler will measure this against the required service levels. Agents can also enter their availability, for example they can say “I am available from 8 a.m. until 8 p.m. on a particular day, give me an 8-hour shift between those hours.”

Moving away from fixed rotations, where agents work on particular days of the week and specific shift patterns provides huge benefits in terms of employee engagement and improved service levels. The scheduler will produce optimal schedules based on service levels and staff preferences increasing both staff and customer satisfaction. Equiniti will be able to introduce cross channel working in the future as they can easily create a combination of shifts within Teleopti across customer contact channels such as inbound calls, email or chat.

Mobile app – MyTime

The mobile app, MyTime (the agent portal) has proved particularly popular amongst the agents as it provides instant decisions when booking annual leave, emergency holiday requests (to cover childcare for example), requesting shift swaps or overtime. These tasks are now all automated saving Team Leaders a huge amount of time whilst keeping the agents happier and more engaged. In fact, the Call Center Manager at Equiniti has seen a reduction in unscheduled absences thanks to features such as; agents being able to see their schedules four weeks in advance instead of two, the ability to take emergency holidays and shift preferences all of which allows agents to arrange their personal life around work. The schedule can now be created years in advance, however the date published to the agents can be whatever they set it to be.

Annualized Hours

Equiniti are also using annualized hours, which provides them with flexibility to schedule against demand. For example, they may have a period in the year which is very quiet and agents are relatively unoccupied. Using annualized hours the scheduler will allow them to fit all the agent’s hours into a defined period based on demand ensuring they don’t have a surplus of staff in quiet periods.

Re-optimization

There will always be times throughout the year when the unexpected happens, which will disrupt schedules. To manage this, Equiniti use the re-optimization function that can be run at a touch of a button. This will identify skills gaps in a particular area and will reschedule to ensure the best levels of service with the staff that are available. It can also work in reverse if there is less volume and staff can be pushed onto email and receive notification of what they are doing next.

Forecasting and ‘what-if’ scenarios

The nature of Equiniti’s business means they are always taking on new clients and contracts. They have found the forecasting and ‘what-if’ scenarios functionality within Calabrio Teleopti particularly useful for this as it allows them to understand how their operations will be affected when on-boarding a new client. For example, will they have enough staff? What will happen to service levels if their call volumes were to increase by 10%? Or even 20%? These can even be tested in 15-minute intervals, daily, weekly or annually.

Equiniti have found the ‘what-if’ scenarios useful for scheduling events. Data can be used from the past to help with future scheduling. This mitigates the guesswork involved in scenario planning and events can be scheduled based on facts and data. For example, data could be taken from the last five holidays and used as a basis for scheduling the next one. Not only can they look at the volume but also the profile of when that volume comes in.

Skills Summary

There was a ‘wow’ moment for Equiniti when they started looking at the skills summary and the visibility that it provided. It meant that for the first time the business were able to view incoming traffic,
performance and staffing at an individual skill level but also collectively, with a more holistic view. For example, a particular area of the business will be attempting to meet demand on 4 skills. The skills summary shows the vital statistics down to the intraday level for the grouping of the skills but will also highlight issues within each skill that makes up the skill summary/skill group.

Agent proficiency & gamification

Agent proficiency is something that Equiniti had never used before with previous systems. Now they are using it for new starters and can stagger their agents by reflecting them as being 60% or 80% proficient for example. The tool will factor in proficiency when calculating the number of agents scheduled in that period and this information can be pre-loaded and the proficiency automatically increases week after week allowing for more accurate forecasting.

In addition, Equiniti are able to motivate their employees in a fun way with gamification and set up team games. They can enter their own KPIs via a CSV file, which they haven’t been able to do in the past.

Implementation, training and go-live

The implementation was challenging because Equiniti had many IT policies and procedures in place and in addition to that they were short of resources at the time of the project going live, so they contracted a consultant from Business Systems for 12 weeks to fill the gap. They are now using Calabrio Teleopti across all departments within the Customer Experience Center and went live in February 2018.

The Business Systems team consulted with Equiniti to find the optimal way to set up their WFM solution. The Business Systems consultants have real-life experience of working in contact centers across various sectors so were able to guide Equiniti on setting up teams and gathering the necessary information to achieve a successful implementation. Training was delivered in several areas including:
• Resource Planning
• Business Trainers (train the trainer)
• Agent Training
• Team Leader Training

User adoption was high as the team focused on all the positives that Teleopti would deliver in terms of the mobile app, preferences, shift swaps and gamification. Functionality that would help Equiniti’s end users with their worklife balance are what really appealed. User adoption was high as the team focused on all the positives that Teleopti would deliver in terms of the mobile app, preferences, shift swaps and gamification. Functionality that would help Equiniti’s end users with their worklife balance are what really appealed.

Support and Service

On the service and support element of the project, Simon Thompson of Equiniti says “Business Systems have been supportive and quick to react throughout the period of implementation. They’ve been truly flexible and the service they’ve provided has been first class.”

Equiniti have a variety of options when it comes to on-going support and service. They have access to the Business Systems Customer Service desk, which incorporates a team of technical support engineers and has a proven track record of meeting 99.999% of all Service Level Agreements. There is an online Forum available from Teleopti which contains information on how to use the functionality and a definition of terminology used. Equiniti also have a customer care package which includes additional days for Business Systems Consultants to go on-site.

Equiniti were also left with a bespoke user guide which was specifically tailored for their system. They have access to the Workforce Optimization team at Business Systems any time if they require help. The WFO team have worked post-implementation with Equiniti to help them make further progress with the solution. For example, trialing new, flexible ways of scheduling and working with new features. Simon Thompson of Equiniti says “The BSL team have been great, the ideas they’ve brought forward on how we can use the tool based on its functionality has bought huge benefits to us”.

BENEFITS

Improved employee engagement
One of the concerns that Equiniti wanted to address was lack of employee engagement. Simon Thompson of Equiniti said, “One of the most important parts of our business, our frontline Customer Experience Representatives, are finding their work-life balance enhanced by features such as the MyTime app and shift trade boards which is not to be underestimated.”

Improved customer experience
The customer experience has also improved as they now have the ability to plan the right people with the right skills at the right time with improved visibility of hotspots ensuring optimum customer service levels.

Considerable time savings & operational efficiencies
The time savings are considerable, running schedules is far quicker and more efficient. What-if scenarios are able to give them much greater insight into the operational side of the business. The ability to group skills, as well as view individually, has allowed the business to have better insight and identify areas of concern (or for improvement), which they were not able to do before.

Reducing the impact of unforeseen changes
Intraday Management has allowed them to reduce the impact of the unexpected happening and enables them to redeploy the workload to available staff with the correct skills to deliver an optimum and efficient customer service experience.

Improved performance, visibility & increased efficiency

Improved schedule efficiency through accurate forecasting and optimal scheduling has enabled the business to be more effective. This has been further improved through better adherence to schedules and visibility has improved with adherence reporting. In addition, agents also have more visibility with a performance dashboard (MyReport), gamification and reports available to them, thus enabling them to take ownership of their own levels of performance.

FTE savings
Equiniti are already experiencing FTE savings, however they expect a further return on investment by the end of year two.

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