Emma Skygebjerg Talks Workforce Management
Ease of use is one of the top drivers of customer retention for software developers. For Emma Skygebjerg of Loxysoft she highlights the ease of use and user-friendly aspects of their ProScheduler tool several times during our interview at Call Center Week Winter.
The shop talk or internal talk for developers as they focus on customer retention is “stickiness”. How do we make our products more sticky? How do we make it irreplaceable?
Stickiness is important to product developers because customers are more reluctant to switch products. When customers use software products and rely on them, the products’ stickiness is high. Developers can grow faster when their customers stay longer.
But developers can increase stickiness in more ways than one. The most positive direction is a great experience for customers. They want to continue using the product.
For software developers, when stickiness is positive, they experience lower client acquisition costs due the higher client retention and fewer customer complaints and bad reputations to manage. This is a win-win.
Watch Emma Skygebjerg of Loxy Soft talk Workforce Management at Call Center Week Winter with Jim Rembach Click to Tweet
What Loxysoft Does
Loxysoft Group is the largest full-service provider of support systems for contact centers and other contact-intensive organizations in Scandinavia. The group has over 100 employees spread out over five locations: Stockholm, Gothenburg, Oslo, Bracke, and Ostersund where Headquarters is located.
Loxysoft Group consists of Loxysoft AB, Loxysoft AS, Loxysoft Workforce Management AB and Loxytel AB. Together, these companies can deliver everything a state of the art contact center needs. Telephone services with Loxytel AB, staffing system with Loxysoft WFM AB, outbound dialer system and CRM systems with Loxysoft AB and inbound contact center systems with Loxysoft AS. In addition, Loxysoft Group also provide everything from lead lists to advanced consulting and support.
Loxysoft Group’s customers need only one single point of contact but can, if needed, utilize all the capacity and competence of the entire Loxysoft Group. Customers are today mainly located within the Nordic countries but Loxysoft Group also has customers in other parts of Europe, Asia and North America.
When Workforce Management tools don’t work
My good friend Dan Rickwalder of Proactive Planning Group shared in an article titled Seven Call Routing Decisions that Make Planning Hard that as an expert in Workforce Management he often hears, “the forecast was off.”
He shares that call data is the cornerstone of the planning process. You cannot generate a good forecast if the call data is wrong. And without a good forecast, the rest of the planning process falls apart. Being able to count calls is so important that it is the first thing he looks at with a new client.
And when he finds call data issues, it’s usually one of these seven “deadly sins” of call routing.
- Overflow Routing – Agents too busy, wait 30 seconds then send the call somewhere else. This is an attempt to keep calls with the best agents. But in reality it just holds calls where they will not be answered and then it affects call counting.
- Voice Mail – Is it handled? Is it abandoned? Is it RONA (Ring On No Answer)? Typically voicemail calls are counted as handled calls. That poses the issue of a handled call that will then need to be worked in a “not ready” state. It also messes up handle time, since typically the call is handled in only the ring time (5-10 seconds).
- Second Line – Allowing agents to have customers call them back directly. This poses several issues and not just for call counting. Generally second line calls are counted as direct extension volume along with calls to supervisors and others. This means these calls will not be officially counted until you add them in.
- Call Back in Queue – This functionality has many names and works differently depending on your communications platform vendor. But the result is the same; customers get called back when their turn to be answered comes up. While this is great for customers, it poses challenges from a workforce planning perspective.
- Reserve Agent – This functionality combines with rollover routing to send calls elsewhere if there is not a minimum number of agents available. This preserves service performance for the reserved agent group, but also causes that group to have artificially low occupancy.
- Auto After Call Work (ACW) – This functionality doesn’t actually effect call counting, but it does affect handle time. In essence, agents are given a set number of seconds of ACW between calls. This artificially inflates handle times.
- Multiple IDs – Many communication platforms come with automated skill setting tools these days. However many centers still use multiple agent log ins for different tasks. There are good reasons to do this, including client billing and complex setup on skill changes. And while this also does not cause call counting issues, it does cause people counting and lost time. And many WFM systems cannot accommodate multiple IDs.
So as Dan says, “there you have ‘em…your seven sins or signs of the apocalypse, or things that will just make my head hurt when I visit your center.”
If these sins are experienced in your call center, the Workforce Management tool you use not be easy to use. But it’s would not be the developers fault. You must be aware of how your sins affect call counting and you must minimize them.
Join me on the Fast Leader Show Podcast
Listen to the Fast Leader Show now. It’s an energizing docuedutainment (don’t look it up I made it up) podcast released each Wednesday and hosted by Jim Rembach. Each week, Jim introduces you to real folks (from the call center industry and beyond) with real stories of how they were able to get over the hump and lead themselves or others better…faster. You’ll learn how to become a better leader (faster) through their stories by improving your employee and customer engagement through the power of improving your emotional intelligence. Get more human-centric and move onward and upward…faster.