The Holiday Preparation List
Yes, every year we do a blog on this. Because every year, many contact centers rely on increased holiday business to pay the bills.
If we are entering your busiest time of year, you’ll get through it if you have prepared in advance. It’s not too late to start. Here’s what to do:
- The Stand-By Agent List
More calls means you may need more agents to handle them. You should have a stand-by list, created from promising applicant interviewees, former agents that may have time to freelance, and experienced temps provided by an agency. Now is the time to check in with these folks to see if they are still available.
- Workforce Management
Proper planning and forecasting is the key to handling seasonal changes in call volume. This is much easier to do with Workforce Management software. Now you can take advantage of “special day” forecasting/scheduling, leveraging call history data to forecast the future. Plus, you can run simulations based on this data and review the results, so they can be fine-tuned as necessary. Once generated, schedules should be easily accessible to all concerned parties so there’s never any confusion.
- Check With Marketing
Has the company announced a new seasonal sale or promotion? Is there any reason to believe it will result in higher or lower call volume than last year’s sale? Start running those numbers now.
- The Test-Drive
There is no substitute for practice, not only to confirm that you have the right resources in place, but also to allow your agents (particularly the newer and seasonal hires) to acclimate to the pressures of the work environment. Perform multiple drills to identify unforeseen hurdles that can impact customer service.
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