Ben Willmott at Calabrio explains how action-based web tools are the new stars of the show when it comes to workforce management
For today’s team leaders, every minute counts. Shifting business requirements and changing customer habits mean it is vital for managers to have full visibility of their contact centre operations along with the power to adapt agent schedules, at speed, whenever the need arises. Likewise, flexibility in terms of work life balance is important for customer service agents therefore, options such as home-working are becoming increasingly popular.
In modern workforce management (WFM) solutions, integrated web-based scheduling and resource planning enables managers, team leaders and their agents to connect in real-time. Previously sold as add-on modules, the latest action-based web tools are finally coming into their own as an all inclusive part of any self-respecting WFM package. Designed to perform on a range of modern browsers, they encourage collaboration and promote visibility and transparency, a perfect line of sight, for both managers and agents.
Top three benefits of collaboration web-based tools
Bringing agility to the contact centre is a top priority for many contact centre managers. By maximising the functionality of the latest web-based resource planning and scheduling tools, team leaders are guaranteed a wealth of benefits operationally, culturally and commercially. Here are three very good reasons to make them a critical and strategic part of your contact centre strategy:
Always in control – the latest WFM technology offers instantaneous support that puts team leaders and resource planners in control of their contact centre operations at all times and even across different time zones. They can access team schedules and modify them to accommodate seasonal peaks and troughs or unplanned changes in a fast changing environment. Managers are able to compare actual agent status with their schedules and against contracted hours to make informed decisions and necessary improvements quickly.
Furthermore, with access to a wealth of historic data and advanced reporting functionality it becomes possible to speedily predict, create and search future schedules. This will ensure contact centres are well prepared in advance with enough coverage and the right-skilled agents in place to deliver an exceptional multi-channel customer experience at all times.
Intelligent grouping – Incorporating powerful search functionality, web-based tools allow team leaders to group agents cross-company by multiple criteria, such as skills or location. For example, a resource planner could search for agents with a specific language skill across their entire network of offices around the world.Flexible feature sets, such as grouping, performance reviews and the ability to modify schedules, allow team leaders to resolve issues more quickly and make rapid, informed decisions about necessary improvements.
Collaboration all the way – Advanced search, sort and editing functionality gives the entire operations team a clear and accurate overview of expected agent activities at all times and enables team leaders to change shift times and allow swaps in line with agent requests as well as business needs. Make collaboration your contact centre motto – intraday activities, requests and people can all be managed and shared at the click of a mouse in one single, integrated package.
Finally, prepare to create a winning front-line team. When every minute counts, a web-based tool makes it possible to track schedule adherence, monitor individual and team performance (to identify training gaps), set up performance reviews and relevant coaching sessions, all in real-time and without leaving your desk.
Don’t just take our word for it
Take a look at what one of Calabrio’s customers has achieved. Rentalcars.com, the world’s biggest online car rental service, manages 800 sales and customer service advisors to handle over 7.5 million car rentals around the world, every year. The company’s Calabrio solution has been instrumental in ‘looking after people’, in their own words, a top priority for Rentalcars.com. By centralising resource planning, leaders and advisors have a good line of sight of their own and their colleagues’ activities wherever they are.
Never underestimate the power of web-based technology. The latest collaborative ways of working enable modern team leaders to keep tabs on their contact centre and keep staff motivated and happy. The result? Increased efficiencies in time and costs, unrivalled service quality, loyal customers and a healthy corporate performance – what are you waiting for?