According to Dave Hoekstra at Calabrio, Workforce Engagement Management (WEM) is a team sport. Why? Because customers extract most value from their new, comprehensive WEM offering when their workforce planning and quality teams are in step with each other.
After all, workforce management (WFM), quality assurance (QA), and performance coaching departments should collaborate, spot opportunities to leverage each other’s data, and take contact center performance to the next level.
This concept isn’t new, however, many service operations have yet to learn this lesson.
“Too Many Organizations Are Still Working In Silos”
Most customer service leaders do not see the value in working together. This is one of the core reasons why, as Hoekstra puts it: “Most organizations are not fully benefitting from WEM and are still working in silos.”
“It’s very difficult to drive value from a WEM suite if the users of the suite aren’t even talking to each other internally,” he says. “That remains an ongoing challenge.”
Yet, there are additional reasons why WEM investments may not reach their full potential.
For instance, some employees have become very attached to the products they have used – in many cases – for 20 to 30 years.
So, there is often pushback when a manager encourages a switch to a more modern suite. Some department leaders even rip out new tools and replace them with more familiar solutions.
In the world of SaaS-based contact centers, this is becoming much easier to do.
However, by doing so and working in silos, operations limit the vast potential of WEM suites to drive enhanced customer, employee, and business outcomes.
Changing the Status Quo and Driving ROI
Step one to realizing a return on investment is facilitating conversations between customer service leads, discussing how they could use each other’s data to drive ROI.
“A lot of decisions happen at the granular, operational level, when we should be going a little bit higher up and having more of a strategic conversation,” says Hoekstra. “That is where you get the light bulb moments and broader ambitions.”
As an example, consider a WFM leader that understands the potential of using agent evaluation data to inform their schedules.
A planner may then look at the schedule and spot agents that – despite performing well – are not best suited to a particular type of contact, for example complaint handling.
Then, they recognize that the contact center tends to get more complaints on a Monday morning because customers have noticed an issue over the weekend.
In doing so, they can offer these top performing agents, that aren’t great with compliant handling, the opportunity to start later on Mondays and do more hours on Tuesdays instead, optimizing contact center performance.
Nonetheless, this is only one example. There are many other opportunities contact centers are missing because many are not collaborating or viewing WEM as one integrated suite.
Workforce Engagement Management: 1 + 1 = 3
“When you start to provide all these functions—including WFM, QA, speech analytics, and more on a central platform, working together as one, it is a case of 1 + 1 = 3,” claims Hoekstra.
“There are new initiatives that you can run across domains that you just can’t do with siloed functions and solutions from different vendors.”
In addition to the example above, these initiatives may also include:
- Identifying when agent performance typically dips to optimize break times
- Isolating the channel an agent performs best in and giving them more time managing that channel
- Spotting where they work best to enhance their hybrid work schedule.
Yet, in addition to pulling service leads together, creating new WEM workflows, and working with a single vendor, contact centers must build a more general awareness of what a WEM “suite” means.
Indeed, when managers hear “suite” they tend to think: “Jack of all trades, master of none.”
Nevertheless, these suites are 20 years old now, according to Hoekstra. “They’re best-of-breed in each component. So, there is no functional compromise in buying a suite,” he concludes. “In fact, having all of your data in a single suite completely eliminates dreaded silos, making information easier to access and interpret, especially for leaders who aren’t viewing the data on a daily basis.”
Calabrio: The Award-Winning WEM Suite Provider
Calabrio helps customer service organisations create a connected WEM strategy, utilize a best-of-breed suite, and move the needle on contact center performance.
Such dedication paved the way for Calabrio to secure the 2023 CX Award for best workforce optimization provider at CX Today’s hallmark awards show.
To learn more about Calabrio’s technology and how its team of experts can take your WEM strategy to the next level, visit: calabrio.com