How Workforce Optimization (WFO) Transforms The Call Center?
Workforce optimization (WFO) is a call and contact center business strategy with the goal of optimizing employee performance to increase customer satisfaction, while decreasing operational costs. It can provide several benefits for a contact center.
Most workforce optimization solutions have four key components:
- Quality Management and Recording
- Workforce Management
- Interaction Analytics
- Performance Management
Let’s break down how all of this can transform contact centers by streamlining operations, increasing agent engagement, and providing consistent positive customer experiences.
Quality Management and Recording
Quality management and recording can transform your call center by helping you streamline operations and provide better agent coaching. Manually cherry-picking customer interactions to monitor compliance requirements is both inefficient and allows for non-compliant conversations to slip through the cracks. It also provides agents with actionable feedback and ensures compliance requirements are met by capturing customer interactions for review by an evaluator. These evaluation forms include scores based on specific behaviors, like an agent abiding to a compliance script at the beginning of a call. These evaluation scores make it easy to identify agent performance and serve as opportunities for agent coaching. Some solutions also offer automated quality management, which reduces variability between different evaluators. Overall, quality management and call recording can transform your call center by ensuring agents are following compliance protocols and gives supervisors tools to coach more effectively.
No one likes to be transferred to multiple agents to get answers. Workforce management transforms call centers by providing consistent, high quality customer service by creating staffing plans so that the right agent, with the right skillset, is available in the right channel at the right time. A strong workforce management solution provides interval-by-interval forecasts to determine how many agents are needed at a given time. When accurate and optimized schedules are created and adhered to, customers gain a sense of trust that they’ll be connected to a knowledgeable agent every time.
Great WFO solutions, not only track agent schedule adherence, but make it easy for agents to view, bid, swap, and notify their supervisors about shifts. Some solutions have mobile applications that allow agents to send a notification if they’re running late, for example. This way, supervisors can proactively adjust the schedule so that the other agents on the schedule aren’t so affected. Agents are more engaged because they have more control over their schedule and supervisors can receive up-to-date notifications to adjust when necessary. Overall, workforce management solutions reduce agent and supervisor stress while ensuring customers always have a positive experience.
Interaction analytics transforms call centers by aggregating valuable insights from customer interactions across many channels. Interaction analytics is a key component of a workforce optimization solution because it enables contact centers to capture all recorded voice calls and, in some solutions, interactions in digital channels. By doing so, interaction analytics can help contact centers understand what their customers are saying and how their agents are responding. Fully indexed interactions are searchable, making it easy to identify common trends. If customers frequently call in with questions about their warranty, interaction analytics allows you to dive into those conversations and use this data to better train agents on how to respond. Interaction analytics is essential for understanding customers and using data across channels to better train agents.
Performance management helps call centers maximize agent contributions to success. It creates a culture of transparency and high performance, while also providing supervisors detailed KPIs and metrics. Best-of-breed workforce optimization solutions with performance management include real-time performance visibility, continuous historical trends and correlations, and automatic notifications when KPIs or SLAs change or drift.
A great way to use workforce optimization to transform your call center is to combine performance management and gamification to optimize agent productivity. Gamification uses challenges and games to create healthy competition. With rewards and payouts, this motivates agents while also installing a culture of high performance and transparency, which is known to help to reinforce training and reduce agent attrition.
For more information about workforce optimization, check out our Five9 WFO datasheet.
Moving to the cloud will allow for faster, easier deployments, seamless upgrades, flexible scalability, and reduced capital expenditures associated with on-premises systems.
The contact center should support customer journeys across web chat and social messaging apps like Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, and others.
Shoppers will be coming in from many different channels, so it will streamline the customer experience to route interactions using the same logic.
Agents must begin the conversation right where the customer left off online. When the customer’s needs are transferred to an agent in real time, your brand is creating a seamless transition from web to contact center. Remove customer stress, unneeded customer repetition, wasted time, and deliver a world-class customer experience.
Customer relationship management (CRM) system integration can improve the shopper experience by using CRM data to find the last person spoken to, use shopper purchase history to find the best expert, etc. In addition, once the connection occurs, your staff can access past interaction history and CRM information to understand the customer’s journey and deliver a more personalized experience.
Artificial Intelligence (AI)
AI can deliver next- best-action recommendations and assist in responses that will improve conversion rates, increase shopping cart value, and speed up responses.
Supervisors should monitor messaging interactions in real time and assist if needed, even if they are not in the same location.
AI & PCI Compliance
Intelligent virtual agents (IVAs) can automate payment processing across digital channels and reduce your compliance risk by collecting sensitive customer data without revealing it to a human agent. Make sure that the IVAs can easily integrate with your payment gateways.
About The Author
Natalie Mackay specializes in product marketing for Five9, which is based out of San Ramon, California. She also has a background in SaaS tech sales with experience in go-to-market product launches, content creation, demand generation, and sales enablement. Her focus is on solving real-world customer challenges by bringing valuable solutions to market with straight-forward product messaging and positioning.