Workforce management is the process of balancing work to be completed with the resources available to complete it. The solution to finding a balance between workload and resources is to have an effective method of calculating how many incoming demands are anticipated at any given time.
In order to provide the necessary accuracy that can help to actually determine accounts of all historic and future dynamics of a company’s business, a sophisticated forecasting tool is required. Here is a breakdown of the major components of workforce management and how you can best utilize them to benefit your business.
This is probably the number one tool that you want to maximize within your workforce management structure. Accurate forecasting is the foundation of contact-center scheduling — without it, over- and understaffing will occur. Likewise, in a skill-based environment, forecasting is key to effective workforce management. You want to find software that is able to factor in a number of important components in order to best assure the accuracy of your forecasting.
That being said, the program can be used differently depending on the kind of information that is available. For example, the amount of historical data available will determine how effective the forecasting tool can be when it comes to predicting future expectations. Your forecasting ability will also be influenced by the nature of the data available and the forecasting period you’re dealing with.
Once the forecasting process is complete, it is about mobilising the gain knowledge though effective scheduling. The ability to do this depends on the forecast correctly estimating anticipated demand volume and determining the number of agents required to meet service levels. You can think about the affect this has on profitability through the analogy of a call center.
Imagine that call volume is underestimated to the extent that 100 out of 1,000 callers hang up before they speak to an agent, it has the potential effect of a 10 percent loss in business revenue, which projected out over the course of a year results in an amount few companies are willing or able to afford.
3. Choosing a system
Given the many options available from various workforce-management software system vendors, making the right purchasing decision for your company may seem a bit challenging. It is worth it to invest more time up-front choosing the right system though, by identifying and meeting your needs from the beginning, you will eliminate the necessity of future adjustments to the system.
Weigh the pros and cons of a variety of systems before you decide to go forward with the buy and make sure you talk to more than one vendor to ensure that you are getting the right solution.
4. Look for experience
Although brand-new exciting alternative can be appealing, it is probably best to go with a system that has stood the test of time. Remember that deciding to go with a proven system will allows you to address your needs immediately and see results quickly. Choose a system that collects enough data to generate an accurate forecast and accommodate all existing scheduling variables.
5. Don’t forget to budget for current and ongoing training
While considering how you will implement your new system, it is important to factor in costs for future training of new employees, as well as ongoing training for existing users. You would also be well advised to put all current and future supervisors through training.
Don’t underestimate the fact that delayed or second-generation training could have a serious impact on the reduced understanding of the system. Also, plan to take advantage of upgrades and get trained on them, they are created for your benefit.