Why workforce optimisation improves the efficiency of your social customer care team

14 June 2018 by Anita Matthews

Improve Your Social Customer Care Performance with Workforce Optimisation

Today social customer care teams are handling more and more digital interactions. Contact Centres are evolving both geographically and technologically and must handle new channels and infrastructure. As teams become more disparate, shift patterns change and homeworking becomes more prevalent, it creates an increasing challenge to stay on top of team productivity and performance.

Just to add to the complexity, customers generally don’t care how many other social messages you have to handle.  They expect the best possible response time. They only care that their message is resolved as quickly and easily as possible.

A key way to ensure your team stays productive and continues to meet your SLA is to use workforce management and optimisation

What exactly is workforce management?

In general terms workforce management relates to activities required to maintain a productive workforce. These can include: Scheduling, forecasting, performance management and time-keeping & attendance.

How is this different from workforce optimisation?

Workforce optimisation is all about achieving operation efficiency through the use of improved processes or leveraging new technologies. This means having the right staff in place to deal with your forecast contact volume. If your contact volume increases you’ll need a way to fill the gap, or you’ll create higher wait times and delay customer responses.

How can workforce optimisation benefit my team?

Consistently monitoring employee performance and customer interactions, will help you realise better efficiency, productivity, and ROI.

It can help you in the following ways:

  • Measure productivity – Ensuring your customer service continually meets performance targets can be difficult. There are often other activities an agent needs to undertake as part of their day such as training or attending meetings, which can take them away from responding to customers.
  • Understand your real productivity rate – According to a Knowlagent survey contact centre agents are idle an average of 49 minutes each day. While it’s not realistic to expect agents to be productive 100% of the day, if you can understand more about the other activities they get pulled into, you can improve process flow and make improvements.
  • Forecast activity and staffing levels – Once you have an accurate picture of your average productivity levels and contact volume, you can plan your staffing levels and patterns to match. This means you should be ahead of the curve in terms of any changes in behaviour patterns or longer-term trends.
  • Payments and bonuses – Workforce management can also involve making sure your team members receive the right payments and bonuses. These can include both individual performance bonuses or team related bonuses. Having your performance figures in black and white can help agents understand how their performance compares to the rest of the team and can help you provide the support and training structure they need.

Workforce management for social customer care teams

A social customer service platform like Sentiment with built-in workforce management and optimisation capabilities can help you track and measure social team performance. You can understand more about your contact flow and ensure you’ve got sufficient resources in place to cope with demand.

Workforce Management

Workforce Management - status timeline

Image showing statistics available in the Workforce Management Metrics section of the Sentiment platform

Track and monitor agent status

The Sentiment system tracks agent status’ and provides insightful metrics and reporting to show which agents are online and when. The agent status’ can also be customised to enable you understand more about any time spent “offline” e.g. at lunch, in a meeting, team training, administration duties.

This can help provide a true reflection of your team's capacity available at any given time, and how this varies throughout the day, week, month.

The Sentiment Workforce Management section provides supervisors with a visual output of agent status data, timelines and status summaries. The data available includes:

  • Status breakdown by %
  • Status totals by login time and status
  • Status timeline showing the status of agents across the chosen time period.

Learn more - Try Sentiment for free and see how you can easily track and monitor agent and team customer service performance on social media.

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Tags: social customer care, social agent productivity, workforce management