Strategically Scheduling Veteran and New Agents Provides Balance
Call center scheduling is becoming increasingly important, especially because agent turnover rates show no signs of slowing down. It’s no secret that call centers are somewhat like a revolving door—new agents come in as veterans leave all the time. There are plenty of reasons for this never-ending flow of agents, but one of the main issues if agent burnout. People get tired of answering phones all day, especially if they have to deal with a lot of angry customers. Proper and fair scheduling, especially during the summer months, can help combat this problem. Here are some of the best ways to handle call center scheduling.
Use staggered start times and split shifts. Rather than having set blocks of time for all agents to come into work, consider allowing them to make their own hours. For instance, one agent may choose to work from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m., while another chooses to work from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Similarly, you can break up shifts into a.m. and p.m., so some agents can choose to work in the morning while others can work at night. Not only will allowing your agents to pick their own hours make them happier, but it’ll ensure that the call center is operational for longer in the day, which is great for customer satisfaction ratings as well.
Let a random agent make the summer schedule. As a post from Call Centre Helper suggests, it might be a good idea to let an agent make the summer schedule. They know better than anyone else how frustrating it can be to work hours you don’t want, and will likely go out of their way to create a schedule that makes everyone happy. Good schedules and happy agents are especially important during the summer months.
Make sure to have a good mix of new and veteran agents on at all times. This is incredibly important, and goes back to my earlier point. Unfortunately, call centers do have high turnover rates. Good scheduling will stop some people from leaving, but not all. That’s why it’s so important for managers to schedule a healthy mix of veteran and new agents in the same time slots. Newer agents will be able to look to veteran agents for guidance, and managers can avoid the potential disasters that could come along with having a call center staffed only by newbies for any chunk of time.