The labour market is currently in a state of flux. Entire industries have come to a standstill while other sectors are struggling with understaffing. Working online, changing mobility, and a changed attitude towards work ethics and productivity are permanently changing the working climate. How can workforce management (WFM) contribute to this? We asked Robert van de Weerd, WFM specialist at Engage.
The power of good WFM
We live in a 24/7 economy in which work and private life are increasingly intertwined. Listening to the employees’ requests for flexibility, and using this to bind them to us for longer and achieve maximum efficiency is only possible if WFM is well organized. This is all about deploying the right number of employees with the right skills at the right time to optimize services for our partners.
In addition to planning, it also involves forecasting the demand for capacity, translating the demand into the required deployment, and making adjustments on the shop floor. WFM is a discipline that affects the entire organization. To make sure the WFM process is executed perfectly, Engage uses Verint as our WFM solution. This enables us to run the scheduling process efficiently and effectively. Moreover, this solution is fully in line with our Happy People philosophy. It allows Engage employees to greatly influence their own schedules so that we can help improve the work-life balance. When drawing up schedules for our employees, we take their wishes and preferences into account as much as possible, which helps us keep our services focussed. Our WFM team has the important task of striking the right balance between employee and customer interests.
When it comes to the work itself, WFM puts you to make a much better match between the customer, the customer’s question, the channel, and the employee. Many of our partners are in the process of developing a channel strategy. Which channels suit our services and products, and what suits our customers and employees? It’s important that you get to know your employees well, and what drives them, and to link this to the right channel and schedule their work accordingly. Happy employees make for happy customers.
How do you see the future of WFM? Does Conversational Intelligence (CI) affect WFM?
WFM continues to play a crucial role in customer contact, where information can be gathered ever faster and more concretely through the use of conversational intelligence. For example, conversational intelligence allows all conversations to be monitored, and we can respond more quickly and efficiently if we observe any peculiarities. This helps to improve the deployment of our employees and contributes to a pleasant customer experience.
Have the events of 2020 influenced how you work?
The events of 2020 have certainly had an impact on my work. The closure of branches has considerably increased the share of e-stores. In terms of customer contact, this translates to explosive growth in customer queries. Capacity models that are constantly changing due to new insights had to be adjusted regularly. Whereas I used to visit our customers frequently on location, now this contact is mainly through online meetings. I miss being able to physically see and experience the atmosphere and the commotion; things are more difficult from a distance. Fortunately, all facilities are set up in such a way that we can properly operate all our accounts from home, although catching up over coffee during a break is unfortunately not yet possible.
Are you interested in finding out how WFM can make your customer service even more efficient? Or do you need help with designing or redesigning your customer service with people working from home? Please contact Inke Lunenberg by calling +31 (0)6 46290217 or e-mailing email@example.com.