Social customer service is brand new channel that helps to drive satisfaction and loyalty. As we know organizations are moving through different stages of maturity, so different customer communication channel is now of great use. For example, the recent trend of using “voice of the customer” for information helps to improve marketing, products and customer support.
Again, there are ample of organizations who are struggling to measure the impact of social customer service over the business metrics. Now as the title suggest how outsourcing providers are proving efficient results at such a cheap price. Is it social media alone or they have to look into big factors? One such a big factor on which BPO stresses is a workforce management.
Workforce Management: Planning Effectively
The management must focus their attention at the agents and should balance their work. You need to have the right number of agents who have right skills to deliver quality customer service. On the other side, you need to control the cost and achieve operational efficiency at the same time. Workforce management thus has turned sophisticated by time.
Stay Aware Of the Unexpected Situations
If some natural disasters occur, the power cut makes it impossible for the agent to work. Call center often go for the disaster recovery and business continuity planning (DR/BCP). Yet, they have to face this unexpected situation for some time. In such an instance, the workforce management has to prepare for some basic question.
- Can they re-locate the calls or sites?
- Will the voice and the data network allow them to go global?
- Who is the next available agent for call routing?
- Can alternative agents talk in multiple languages?
- What amount of focus an alternative need to give for the action?
Contact centers cannot work without a solid workforce management, and for that, they need to identify the four specific goals:
You have to ensure that you have the right assumptions. When you select a provider for your business, ask about their forecasting methodologies for staffing calculations and queue dynamics. When you opt for a proper planning, it involves:
- Long-term Staffing Forecasts coupled with short-term
- Scheduling Forecasts
Call history can be used to determine the inputs including – call volumes, arrival patterns, handle times and abandonment rates. The future staffing requirements also fulfilled under the following factor – Identifying outlines, fluctuations and variations, especially for holidays or special events.
When you think to control the cost, establish stable agent schedules. Effective scheduling is an important part of the call center transaction. It is going to affect the different areas of business like – service level agreement, employee and customer satisfaction, the ability to execute non-voice activities, and the bottom line. The scheduling must aim for stable agent schedules keeping a small portion of the agent population flexible.
With the use of forecasting and scheduling, things can change quickly. However, the outsourcing partner must be able to make a real-time schedule changes to maintain service levels. To establish disciplined adherence to schedules, agents must track their own performance, and make adjustments as required.
They require reviewing the metrics of the past day and according to that, the agent must report to his or hierarchy. Reporting is going to range from short interval, to daily, weekly, monthly and quarterly levels for overall trend analysis. The outsourcing partner must report data, as a repository of valuable information to improve the forecast and scheduling. When we think to manage the staffing levels, you have to consider the above factors. With solid workforce management, you can have clear goals and things will remain on track. You have to get a deeper insight about the provider’s flexibility, when you choose your outsourcing partner.
Jessica Jones is an Outreach Consultant working with a leading BPO industry in the United States. As she is in the industry for more than 10 years, her relevant experience thus serves the client and customer with better information and review on the industry work process and services. You can read more about Fusion BPO here.