Extended Hours Situations: The WFO Difference

Sometimes it happens for a good reason – a special sales promotion, or a 24-hour shopping event.

Sometimes it happens for a bad reason – a product recall, or a news story that casts a negative light on the company.

In either case, special circumstances may require contact centers to schedule extended hour shifts. While doing so can be a challenge, it is one more easily managed with a workforce optimization solution.

With WFO, contact centers can accurately forecast and plan personnel needs by running “What If” scenarios and analyzing the results. Once the level of increased demand has been determined, scheduling becomes more efficient and flexible, ensuring better utilization of resources and improved cost management.

Contact centers that already employ a flexible shift model will have an additional advantage in these situations. Their agents are already accustomed to working based on forecasted caller demand, instead of the same specific hours on the same specific days every week. They also have some say in which shifts they are assigned, so they can balance work, school and home life obligations.

As a result, when a manager needs agents to work 7-10 pm on days where this is not routine, he or she may know which agents are likely to be available, and which may be open to an extra shift in exchange for future incentives.

And if such instances become routine, the data gathered by WFO will be invaluable in forecasting future extended-hour details.