Seamless scheduling drives the operational mechanism of a contact centre with efficiency. You need to analyse the pressure of work and allocate the right number of executives at the right hours. It is necessary to schedule the work in a well-calculated manner, so that you can use the time economically. When properly scheduled, you can get optimum benefits from the available resources. Here are ten tips that will enable you to make the call center scheduling processes more productive.
Work on annualised hours
These days, a number of companies operate on annualised hours instead of going for overtimes and extended hours. You may hire part time agents and include both full time and part time agents in your team. When you switch to this system, you can save a lot of resources on overtime expenditure. This enables your company to get more human resources during the busy hours. When the pressure is comparatively lesser, you may decrease the manpower, according to the need of the situation.
Deal with scheduling questions through an intranet
When you look out to devise a flexible work schedule, aiming to increase the productivity of the company, an intranet platform to deal with scheduling questions will turn out to be effective. The employees can discuss their schedules and working hours directly with the schedulers on the platform. They can ask questions about their work timings and request for holidays, if necessary. It will simplify the call center shifts scheduling process and help you to manage the manpower effectively.
Setting up groups of scheduling representatives
You need to up a representative group to discuss about issues related to outbound and inbound call center scheduling. Organize a meeting once a month involving these representatives and get a clear idea of the problems faced by the agents. The representatives are also to be consulted, and you can ask them what they expect to be done to eliminate the hassles. The representatives convey the decisions and opinions of the managing board to the agents.
Clarify the task and timings to the agents
This is a basic element of using the time economically, but often lacks in many organizations. You need to explain the task and timing to every executive. They may not be able to use their time productively if you do not provide them with the guidance. Make sure that no agent is idle and allocate the task to them in a way that ensures the best use of time. When the agents have a clear understanding of the timings, they can incorporate necessary changes in their working procedure to ensure optimum productivity.
The best performers should get the shift of their choice
You can use the scheduling mechanism to improve the performance of the agents. Devise a call center scheduling process, where the best performers are able to pick the shift that they are comfortable with. It will create an urge among the employees to perform better, which, in turn, will leverage the quality of their performance. In a nutshell, the quality of work in your organization will improve if you can motivate your employees to perform better. Positive motivation always enhances productivity and you should implement it without a second thought.
Explain your agents why you decline their preferred shift requests
The agents should be informed why they are not being allowed to get their preferred shifts. It will urge them to comply with the necessary clauses, so that they can enjoy their preferred shift. It will also prevent them from requesting other managers to arrange the desired shifts for them. It might cause problems within your operational infrastructure if they approach a different manager and get their desired shift. Keep the reasoning clear and explain your agents why they are not getting the shifts they prefer.
Automate the work after calls
An effective way to increase the productivity of your company is to automate the work of the agents after the calls are over. It will do away with the wastage of time; this strategy is what a typical call center service provider in India always implements. You may set up a timeout system, which compels the agent to be ready for the next call within a particular time. You may also do away with the process, where the agents select the reasons and sub reasons for interaction. It will deliver a boost to the productive hours.
Every floor should always have a team leader
You may create a chart, where the names of floor managers and their corresponding timings of supervision are displayed in every floor. Their number extensions are also to be displayed in the chart, so that they can forward calls to them without any hassle. They should have a clear understanding of the process and know whom to contact, if necessary. It will save a substantial amount of time and simplify the working infrastructure. The charts should be visible to every agent and help them to contact the floor manager instantly.
Make the agents aware of the impacts
You should try to measure your intraday service level agreement (SLA) and the beginning and end of a day. This will give you an idea of the effectiveness of your call center scheduling strategies. Besides, this can be used in the meetings, where you can monitor whether the current schedule is productive or requires change.
Floors should have the scheduler’s photo
Place the scheduler’s photo on every floor. It delivers a more human-feeling to the agents who contact them. Agents will have a better perception of the person they are contacting, rather than feeling that they are requesting a faceless person for their preferred shift.
Follow these guidelines to make a better use of your resources and time. All the agents should be completely engaged during their working hours; this is what successful companies offering BPO call center services do. Streamline your operational process by incorporating these changes in your organization and start seeing amazing results.