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Series Highlights

Attend this comprehensive series and learn how to:

  • Review data sources for the WFM process.
  • Forecast monthly, daily, and hourly workload.
  • Calculate staffing requirements to meet service goals.
  • Create schedules to match workforce to workload.
  • Manage daily staffing and service levels.
  • Identify strengths and weaknesses in current WFM processes.
  • Optimize skill-based routing designs.
  • Match workforce to make the most of skill-based routing design.
  • Identify strategies for managing daily attendance and adherence.

The majority of costs associated with a call center are attributed to personnel, making it imperative to get just the right number of staff in place.  Call center staffing, commonly referred to as workforce management, is one of the most critical functions of managing call center service level, costs, and ROI.

The Call Center Workforce Management Web-Based Training and Certification Series is designed specifically for the specialized training needs of analysts and those management professionals and leaders responsible for call center staffing.  Within a core program of five targeted sessions, participants will learn best practices in forecasting workload, balancing staffing costs and service tradeoffs, scheduling, managing intra-day service levels, and ensuring agent attendance and adherence. For a more detailed and comprehensive program, an eleven-part is offered covering everything from the very basics to more advanced forecasting techniques for fine-tuning workload predictions, and advanced scheduling techniques that can improve coverage and effectiveness.

For one low price, all your supervisory and management professionals can hone their skills and learn innovative ways to raise your center's quality of service, improve operational efficiency and lower operating costs.  Taught live by members of the RCCSP Professional Education Alliance, and delivered in-house in a virtual classroom at your location, the Call Center Workforce Management Training Series offers proven call center forecasting and scheduling techniques which can be applied directly to your call centers.

This US management seminar series will be delivered in English.

Series Schedule

Want to join-in a series that's already started? That's not a problem! It is not necessary to attend these seminars in any specific order. When you sign-up for a series that's already underway, we will automatically enroll you in the next series for the sessions you missed!

Introduction to Workforce Management:
An Overview of the Workforce Management Process

In this session you will learn about the implications of getting the numbers wrong, as well as the step-by-step process of effectively forecasting calls, calculating staff requirements, creating staff schedules, and tracking daily service and performance. You will also find about the critical tradeoffs between staffing, service, and cost and how each of these tradeoffs affects the final staff count.

Seminar attendees will learn to:

  • Define workforce management and its implications on cost and service.
  • Describe why call center staffing is such a unique kind of problem.
  • Outline the step-by-step process of forecasting calls, calculating staff, and creating workforce schedules.
  • Identify the impact that every single individual has on meeting service goals and balancing workload.
  • Outline ways to improve attendance and schedule adherence.

Data Collection and Analysis (core program course)

The most critical step in the workforce management process is the first one: data collection and analysis. The best predictor of future call workload is past data, so gathering the right data is critical to the workforce management process.

In this session, participants will learn where to look for data and how to scrutinize it to make sure it is appropriate for inclusion in the forecasting process. The course will present mathematical techniques for analyzing data and making needed adjustments. The role of business drivers and how to incorporate them into the planning process will also be focused upon.

Seminar attendees will learn:

  • The basic principles of data-gathering in the workforce planning process.
  • About the sources of call center planning data.
  • About the impact of call routing and button usage on input data.
  • About data aberrations and how to adjust for them.
  • About business drivers most pertinent to the planning process.

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Forecasting Fundamentals:
Proven Practices for Predicting Call Workload (core program course)

Without a solid forecast in place, the best staffing designs and schedule plans just aren't relevant. While forecasting approaches range from simple gut feel to complex mathematical modeling, there are several that every call center manager should know about.

This session reviews the most popular techniques used for forecasting and the advantages and risks of each. Attendees will learn about the step-by-step approach used by most call centers called time-series analysis, including a case study and an exercise to complete after the class. Tips will be provided on forecasting short-cuts and when to use them.

Seminar attendees will learn to:

  • Describe the importance of accurate forecasting and cost implications of doing it poorly.
  • Identify the preferred techniques of data gathering and analysis.
  • Outline the different approaches used by call centers today and which is most widely used.
  • Outline the step-by-step process of time-series analysis.
  • Calculate trend rates and identify seasonal patterns.
  • Identify some popular forecasting shortcuts and when to use them.

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Calculating Call Center Staff:
The Math of Call Center Staffing Tradeoffs (core program course)

Getting the "just right" number of people in place at the right times to handle the contacts - it's every call center manager's dream. However, figuring out the right staffing mix to maximize service to customers, while minimizing cost, can sometimes be a nightmare.

This session outlines the step-by-step approach to call center staffing. Attendees will learn about setting service goals and how to use Erlang techniques to determine the right number of bodies in chairs. The session will also discuss the most critical staffing tradeoffs, such as cost versus service concerns, the effect on service of plus/minus one person, the impact of large groups and economies of scale, and effects of staff occupancy. All attendees will receive free QuikStaff planning software.

Seminar attendees will learn to:

  • Identify factors in setting service level goals and what factors contribute to speed of answer expectations.
  • Use Erlang calculations to pinpoint staffing needs.
  • Identify service and cost tradeoffs and ways to improve service without adding staff.
  • Describe the most common mistake call centers make in determining staff numbers.
  • Identify ways to incorporate multi-media contacts into the staff planning process.
  • Use free QuikStaff call center planning software.

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Scheduling Principles and Problems:
Solutions to Scheduling Challenges (core program course)

Have you managed to arrive at the delicate balance between efficient schedules and staff preferences? Don't worry - you're not alone! It's the age-old problem that workforce planners and call center managers continue to struggle with week in and week out. And just when you've got it figured out, throw in skill-based scheduling, extended hours of operation, or the need to cover e-mails and web chats in addition to calls.

This session outlines the most common scheduling problems call centers face and will provide some traditional solutions as well as some creative new ones to help with your scheduling dilemma.

Seminar attendees will learn to:

  • Describe schedule efficiency versus acceptability conflicts.
  • Identify the ten most common scheduling problems call centers face today.
  • Describe options that have worked for other call centers in solving scheduling problems.
  • Examine schedule horizon tradeoffs.
  • Identify long-term scheduling strategies as well as real-time reaction strategies to meet service goals.
  • Describe the latest workforce management software capabilities for solving scheduling problems.

.

Managing Daily Service Levels:
An Intra-Day Guide to Managing Staff and Service (core program course)

Everything is in place. You've forecasted workload according to best practices and created a staffing plan and set of schedules to efficiently match the workforce to the workload. But you know what they say about the best-laid plans. It's critical to track how well the plan is working every single half-hour of every single day to ensure service goals are being met and employees are being utilized effectively.

This session will outline the process of tracking performance within the day and provide overstaffing and understaffing reaction strategies should the plan go awry.

Seminar attendees will learn to:

  • Identify the components and the process used to track daily performance.
  • Outline the steps of developing a communications plan should changes in staffing be required.
  • Identify reaction strategies from both a staffing and technology perspective.
  • Outline the many types of intra-day activities that affect staff availability and how to track them.
  • Identify the most critical measures of intra-day performance and when to use each one.

Attendance and Adherence to Schedule

One of the toughest jobs related to workforce management may not be the intricate calculations of forecasting nor the numerous iterations of coming up with the best schedule mix. The hardest part may come after the schedules are in place – simply ensuring there are frontline staff available when and where you need them to be. Some call centers are much more successful than others at this attendance and adherence dilemma. So how do you get staff to show up for work on Mondays and stick to their planned break times?

This session will share proven practices on attendance and adherence that have resulted in increased availability.

Seminar attendees will learn:

  • How to quantify the cost and service implications of missing staff.
  • Methods to communicate and educate staff on the “power of one” in call center staffing.
  • Various options for setting adherence performance goals and selling to the staff.
  • How to establish reward and consequence programs that support adherence goals.
  • About software advances in adherence tracking and reporting capabilities and how to justify them.

Advanced Forecasting Techniques:
Fine-Tuning Workload Predictions

Without an accurate forecast of workload and staff requirements, the scheduling process will be inefficient. This session will explore various approaches to help fine-tune your tactical call forecasting process. Whether you're forecasting by spreadsheets or with workforce management software, you'll learn how to improve the accuracy of your daily and half-hourly forecasts through techniques like exponential regression and use of correlation coefficients.

Seminar attendees will learn to:

  • Identify ways to improve forecasting accuracy beyond the basic software forecast.
  • Calculate forecast accuracy by various methods.
  • Outline additional components of time series analysis beyond trend and seasonality.
  • Identify predictable cycles in call center workload.
  • Apply linear and exponential regression techniques to fine-tune forecasts.

How To Effectively Communicate With Call Center Professionals

Workforce managers are comfortable with their own specialized language and terms like erlangs, adherence, and occupancy. It's a language not always understood by operational leaders of the call center. However, you will need to speak the call center management's language to earn approval for the resources you need.  

Seminar attendees will learn to:

  • Describe workforce management and explain its value.
  • Explain workforce management in generic terms.
  • Use communication styles and techniques to maximize understanding.
  • Improve intra-team relationships by employing conflict management strategies.
  • Learn how to adjust your communication style to more effectively interact with call center professionals at all levels.

..

Skill Based Routing Design:
Balancing Customer, Agent, and Center Needs

This session provides a map to guide you through a process of applying skill-based routing fundamentals to the multi-channel environment. It will help you determine and assign priorities in order to manage service differences that make the most sense in your center. If you are responsible for serving customers via multiple channels, you will find valuable guidance from industry experts in this session to help you succeed in properly designing your skill-based routing system.

Seminar attendees will learn:

  • Basic steps of setting up a skill-based routing design.

  • Critical first step in the skill-based routing process and alternatives for making it happen.

  • How to set up communications channels as traditional skill groups.

  • How other call centers are prioritizing different types of contacts and setting service goals.

  • Various options for agent group design.

Skill-Based Routing WFM Challenges:
Forecasting and Scheduling for Skill Based Routing Scenarios

This session provides a brief review of the skill-based routing (SBR) design principles and focuses primarily on the changes that will be needed in the workforce management (WFM) operation. The first step in any effective WFM process is to obtain accurate historical data so the ACD and router setup to support this is critical. Agent and caller priorities can be useful but can create significant challenges in the planning and intraday management of the operation. Matching the WFM processes to the SBR design will go a long way toward achieving the efficiencies and effectiveness that SBR promises.

Seminar attendees will learn to:

  • Describe the basic design principles involved in SBR configurations.
  • Describe the challenges of achieving forecasting accuracy and tips for better data collection.
  • Identify the process of scheduling agents to match SBR configuration demands.
  • Describe the challenges of intra-day management of SBR and how to overcome them.

Who Should Attend

Managers, supervisors, and workforce management specialists who are responsible for service level goals and staffing activities in the call center.  The material in the first five sessions is at an beginner level. The eleven-session series covers beginner to advanced topics.

How to Attend

Access to all seminars in the Workforce Management Series is provided via an Internet connection and a separate audio (telephone) connection.  Two days prior to each seminar, you will be e-mailed access instructions for the web portion and the telephone number to call.  An unlimited number of in-house employees may participate around a single web/audio connection.

Certification

The Mastery Certification in Workforce Management certification consists of two parts: attendance in all five core program sessions of the Workforce Management Series and a certification exam.  The exam is web-based, open-book, and proctored.  Candidates are given 2 hours to complete the 20-question exam and must achieve at least 80 percent accuracy in order to obtain certification.  Certification exams administrations may be purchased for $25 each.  The 2-hour certification session at your location must be proctored by an independent leader from your organization.

Candidates will be advised of their exam scores within two weeks following the completion of the exam.

Course Instructors

The Workforce Management Series sessions will be led by leading authorities on the subject of workforce management, from the RCCSP Professional Education Alliance, a horizontal industry alliance of US call center training providers.

Location

A training room at your facility, with an Internet connection, projection unit, projection screen, telephone line and audio amplification capability.

How to Participate

The registration/connection fee includes a single Internet and single telephone connection to the seven web-based seminars and a course manual master for internal duplication and internal distribution only.

Registration Fees

The fee for the comprehensive eleven-seminar series for an unlimited number of your company's employees around a single connection, is $2750 ($1295 for the 5-part core program series).  The administration fee for the Mastery Certification exam for Workforce Management Series participants is $25 per exam, each.

Private In-House Online Training and Certification

Can't make these dates?  Why not schedule a private in-house seminar series on the dates of your choosing? Any number of your employees may attend each of the seminars around a single web connection (such as in your training room).  The cost of a private single-company seminar series, for a single connection, is $2995 for the 5-part core program, and $6595 for the comprehensive 11-part series.  To schedule dates for your private series, contact a RCCSP course counselor at (708) 246-0320.

Payment in advance is required for attendance of the seminar series and exam administration.

To register, click on the "Book Now" button or call (708) 246-0320.

Workforce Management Certification Online Series
Certification exams (order one for each attendee), $25 each                            


Payment is due prior to the seminar.

Cancellation Policy.  Registrants may cancel up to fourteen days in advance of the seminar start date for a full refund, less administrative fees of $500 USD.  Or, you may transfer your registration to another member of your company at no additional charge.  Registrants cancelling within fourteen days of the seminar will receive credit, less administrative fees of $500 USD, toward any other Resource Center seminar.  In the unlikely event that a seminar must be cancelled, you will be notified at least one week prior to the seminar date.

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