Forecast Staffing With a Seamless WFM System Integration

Agent salaries make up 60% to 70% of contact center costs. If the data driving your workforce management system making decisions around agent use is off by a small amount, the potential implications could be huge. Overstaffing your agent headcount by 2% to 3% could cost you hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars, depending on the size of your organization. Understaff your contact center and customer experience suffers.

In fact, businesses lose an estimated $62 billion per year through poor customer service. And a multichannel bank leaves $124 million on the table for every one-point decline in its customer experience index score. Properly connecting your Genesys® PureCloud® data with your workforce management (WFM) system allows you to accurately forecast staffing. Here’s what you need to consider for a seamless integration.

Accurate Data

The benefits of a WFM system are based on the data it receives from your contact center. That data is used to build forecast models that determine when interactions are going to arrive. And that allows your organization to build efficient agent schedules in the WFM system.

If you handle 1,000 calls a day, multiply that by handle time. Even if you’re off by a small percentage in handle time, your variance between how many people you schedule and what you need could be significant. Accuracy is about getting the data and the calculations of that data based on the different ways a call or chat can be handled — transfers, holds, after call work. It you don’t get that right, you’ll have inaccurate data — and that affects your business.

Your adapter needs to be equipped to handle specific interactions and agent edge cases to effectively manage the workforce. For example, if you allow agents to go into an after-call work state at any time, associating this time to an interaction is important for accurate average handle time calculations. If the data isn’t calculated accurately, you’ll create inaccurate forecasts and schedules.

Timely Data

In addition to having accurate data, you also need that data to be timely. Your solution must provide real-time agent-state data, also called adherence data, to ensure agents stick to their schedules. Real-time doesn’t mean every five minutes or 10 minutes or in a bucketed fashion; it means live, up-to-the-minute data that you receive as agent states change.

Efficient schedules don’t mean anything if no one follows them. Adherence data ensures that people follow the plan. If you’re responsible for workforce management, you spend a lot of time generating forecasts and producing schedules that match the forecasted workload. Real-time adherence data justifies all the work.

For example, if you carefully schedule breaks and lunches, but everyone decides to go to lunch together, you won’t have the people you need where you need them. Real-time agent data will tell you if there’s a problem you need to address. And it guarantees you’ll see an ROI from your forecasting and scheduling.

Flexibility and Future-Proofing

Your WFM adapter also must be able to accommodate any and all interactions (voice, chat, etc.) as well as associated configurations. It needs to be impervious to change and flexible.

If you choose to use one queue for all your interactions, or if you’ve chosen to segment them out, your adapter must be able to deliver this information to the WFM system. And the data must be supplied in the way the WFM wants it. If your WFM system needs information calculated a certain way — especially when calls or other types of interactions overlap intervals — the adapter must support this. A flexible adapter adjusts with business changes.

WFM Adapter for PureCloud

The Aria Solutions WFM Adapter for PureCloud provides a seamless integration between the PureCloud platform and NICE, Aspect, Verint and Teleopti WFM systems. With multimedia support, historical reports and real-time adherence data, the WFM Adapter maximizes your PureCloud and WFM investments with improved employee productivity, forecasting accuracy, capacity planning and resource allocation — all without the need for infrastructure investment.

To learn more about WFM Adapter for PureCloud, visit Aria Solutions in the Genesys AppFoundry Marketplace or contact Aria Solutions to set up a demo.

This blog post was co-authored by Kelly Wilson. Kelly serves as the VP Client Delivery at Aria Solutions. He joined Aria in 2002 and is currently responsible for its professional services and support areas. Prior to joining Aria, Kelly had various operational and management contact center roles at both CellularOne McCaw Communications and TELUS Mobility. Then, he joined Aria as a specialist in workforce management (WFM) and was instrumental in developing this practice.