Transformation of Customer Experience Through Workforce Optimization

Workforce optimization, which includes both technology solutions and an investment in talent, ensures employees perform at peak efficiency and ultimately keeps customers happy.

Vivek runs a busy contact center. He and his team spend much time answering customer enquiries, and work long hours to deliver the ultimate consumer experience. The calls keep coming, and even after long hours, Vivek and his team are not able to generate any valuable insight; work becomes unexcitable, employees lack motivation and inadequate training leads to increased attrition. Vivek wants his business to appear as a strategic asset to his customers but unfortunately, lack of analytic tools makes it a sloppy tale.

Vivek and his management make the right decision to bring in a Workforce Optimization (WFO) solution that allows one to monitor live calls and with agent desktop activity; evaluate interactions, generate scorecards, conduct post call surveys, leverage speech analytics to learn what the customers are saying about the products and line up the right resources at the right time with the help of scheduling and forecasting tools. The result: A happy customer experience.

In today’s highly competitive world, driving exceptional customer experience is key for organizational success. It is customer experience, which effectively helps businesses not only retain existing customers, but help create opportunities to upscale and also bring new ones. Contact centers are the first line of engagement with the customers and also hold the greatest position in the cycle of customer experience, as they address a plethora of customer inquiries on a day to day basis. With customers becoming increasingly tech-savvy and well-informed, it is important to understand them in the most effective manner. And hence, workforce optimization solutions today have become the key to not only a successful business, but a sustainable customer experience.

Technology has made everything too intense today and has thrown out an outrageous number of options to customers to select from. In such a scenario, it becomes imperative that Contact center managers are able to understand customer needs and have the ability to route customers to agents with specific skills that are best suited to assist with customers’ individual needs and preference. This is only possible when effective analytical tools are part of the contact center solutions that help in optimizing the workforce in a manner best suited to delivering customer experience.

Workforce optimization – the clear disruptor

Increased competition in business have provided numerous options to the customer, so, if the customer is not satisfied with a particular service they will look for an alternative. Contact centers are learning these things and are getting much better. But still, there are gaps that need to be filled with new solutions and software.  Workforce optimization solutions are new disruptors in the contact center industry and are making a significant position for themselves. They not only help in analyzing, monitoring customer interactions and maintaining quality but also provide training to agents to understand customers better.

According to Gartner, a workforce optimization solution integrates different contact center technologies which include contact center performance management, e-learning, interaction analytics, quality management, workforce management etc.

Workforce optimization technology provides an ability to produce optimal shift schedules based on the demand of your customers and time of year. It also allows staff to manage their own schedules without impacting service levels. The solution helps in anticipating customer demand and the valuable information collected can boost the experiences of customers and help agents to be the best in the business.

Customer expectations have evolved

Evolution in the customer services space has just started and contact centers have a long way to go. Organizations need to stay ahead of their competitors to cater to these customers.  Organizations should also watch out for industry trends that have the potential to impact businesses in future and ultimately influence customer experience. For instance, significance of Omnichannel in the contact center business; consumers are no longer willing to tolerate having to repeat stories every time they switch hands through the customer service experience. They want steadfast action or prognostic consulting from the agent even before the customer tells his tale.

The need to have a comprehensive WFO suite embedded in one’s contact center solution business has prompted leading enterprises to pursue suitable workforce optimization providers on their existing platforms. 

Today’s contact centers need to sustain a people-centered approach. Although, automation technologies available today have made things more sophisticated and quick, customer engagement and services will still rank high in delivering ultimate customer experience which will eventually come through WFO.

Workforce optimization, which includes both technology solutions and an investment in talent, ensures employees perform at peak efficiency and ultimately keeps customers happy.

The author is R&D Senior Director, Customer Engagement Solutions India, Avaya. Views are personal. 

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