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Our contact center only has 25 agents, what workforce optimization applications should we use?

Question:

Our contact center only has 25 agents, what workforce optimization applications should we use?

Answer:

Contact centers of all sizes, including those with 10 – 250 seats, need management tools and analytics that provide transparency into the performance of their department, insights into the voice of the customer, and help to enhance employee engagement. This is where workforce optimization (WFO) suites fit in. WFO suites are highly beneficial for contact centers in small to mid-size businesses (SMBs) because they provide a fully integrated and unified set of applications for managing and optimizing the operating environment. At a minimum, SMB contact centers should use the following:

Recording – a multi-channel platform that handles 100% recording of: audio (calls), screens (servicing applications, email, chat, short message service (SMS)/text, social media, etc.) and video. Find a recording system that is highly secure, capable of encrypting all interactions from the moment of capture, and that makes it easy to store, search and retrieve data.

Quality assurance (QA)/quality management (QM) – interactions, either recorded or live, assessed on an evaluation form and scored against established contact handling criteria. Contact centers of all sizes should do QA/QM so that the staff knows they are being monitored, to identify coaching opportunities, improve regulatory compliance, enhance customer engagement, and improve results (e.g., sales, collections, etc.).

Workforce management (WFM) – automation of the forecasting and scheduling process, which eliminates the tedious and time-consuming task of manually scheduling agents. Although forecasting and scheduling of small contact centers (fewer than 50 agents) can be less accurate than for larger operations, due to inherent limitations of the erlang C algorithm used in many WFM applications, these solutions are still beneficial. WFM applications can also include agent self-service modules, intraday management, time-off management, mobile apps, long-term planning, and more, as standard or optional components.

As specific needs arise, or as your contact center grows, additional WFO components can be added. Other applications that are part of feature-rich WFO suites include: speech/text analytics, surveying/voice of the customer (VoC), performance management, desktop analytics, gamification, coaching and eLearning.