Call Center Scheduling Feature Article
December 12, 2008
Personality-Based Call Center Scheduling Creates a Positive Environment
By Susan J. Campbell, TMCnet Contributing Editor
Call center scheduling is an important aspect of properly managing a call center. In fact, whether or not agents are properly scheduled will determine the level of service provided to customers, the efficiency of the call center, and the satisfaction of each employee. As employee satisfaction plummets, attrition increases.
Agent attrition is one of the highest and most unnecessary costs within the call center, but it does not have to be a factor. A recent survey revealed that call center agents who have a good relationship with their colleagues are the most motivated to do their jobs and do them well. Team leaders in this survey supported this view.
According to this survey, contact center agent attitudes are changing. The survey suggested that the relationship with their colleagues was three times more important than that with their manager. For team leaders, relationships with their peers were five times more important to them that the one they had with their bosses.
Such attitudes can be taken into consideration when scheduling agents. Sure, it is important to ensure that call center scheduling is done according to forecasted needs and skills, but it is also important to schedule call center agents according to personalities. When contact center leaders schedule according to agent personalities, the overall environment changes, driving efficiency and productivity.
Agents who participated in this survey indicated that a good working environment was the second most important motivational factor. Researchers believe this could be a sign that agents are dissatisfied with their present working conditions as this issue is generally taken for granted and ranked very low in similar surveys.
Too often, managers believes it is merely salary and incentives that are motivating their agents to produce, but in reality, the overall environment is just as important – sometimes even more so. Managers can make a significant difference when they schedule call center agents according to what mix creates the best overall environment.
Commenting on the survey results, Clive Harris, managing director at Specialist Call Center Services, said in a Call Center Helper report, “These results are significant, and HR managers and call centre managers should sit up and take notice. Recruiting people who have the right skills for the role will always be important, but companies must also pay attention to selecting people with the right personality, and critically those who are going to stay loyal to the company.”
Susan J. Campbell is a contributing editor for TMCnet and has also written for eastbiz.com. To read more of Susan's articles, please visit her columnist page.
“There are clearly huge benefits in maintaining a loyal and motivated workforce, but in our experience, too little effort is placed in the recruitment process to achieve this. No matter what motivational techniques you use, not having the right quality and loyalty in the call centre will always hamper your performance and cost you money,” Harris added.
Companies such as Monet Software
offer call center scheduling solutions that allow the call center to pay attention to the skills, availability and personality of the agent. When these things are taken into consideration and matched according to anticipated volumes, the call center is much better equipped to deliver the optimal experience for the customer, and motivate agents toward loyal performance.
Edited by Michelle Robart
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