future-of-contact-centres

What's next? Future proofing your contact center

 

Adaptability is the key to survival for all businesses, and none more so than contact centers.

With consumer habits changing constantly, and the continuing influence of technology on customer-business interactions, looking to the future isn't an option, it's a necessity.

Here we'll do just that. This article will examine a few trends that are already occurring in the contact center industry, and some that you're likely to see in the years to come.

Call Design has solutions to help contact centres navigate the complex world of technology.Technological innovations will play a huge role in the future of contact centers.

1. Increased personalization

The likes of Spotify and Netflix long ago cottoned on to the fact that personalization is the key to customer satisfaction, and this is a trend that's branching out far beyond the entertainment industry.

There are numerous ways that contact centers can personalize the experiences their customers have. These include:

  • Omni-channel approaches: Social media has revolutionized the way people talk to each other, and to businesses. These days, customers expect to be able to reach agents through the medium that's most convenient to them, so establishing which platforms are favored by your consumer base is a great way to show you understand their habits.
  • Empathetic agents: Training your agents to understand a product or service is one thing, ensuring they get this information across in a manner that creates trust with a customer is quite another. Managing the quality of your staff's service should remain an utmost priority for workforce leaders.

2. New technologies

We've already discussed the impact of social media, but there are plenty of other tech-based innovations that have a part to play in the future of contact centers.

Artificial Intelligence: 

Many contact centers are already taking advantages of the benefits offered by artificial intelligence (AI), and its capabilities are only going to increase as the technology becomes more sophisticated.

A few examples of how AI can be used in contact centers include:

  • Helping customers find useful information: In the digital age, consumers will often turn to the internet before picking up the phone. Virtual assistants can be used to direct these users to an FAQ page based on their query, or connect them with the best qualified agent.
  • Taking the place of interactive voice response (IVR) processes: The machine learning capabilities of AI means that it can go beyond presenting a caller with a set of choices, as is seen with IVR. Instead bots can begin to understand statements and therefore provide a better level of customer experience.

Biometric security:

Customers are often asked to give out sensitive information when interacting with contact centers, so it's imperative they trust you. As a result, It's likely that simple identification questions such as full name, age and address will soon become a thing of the past.

Instead, voice biometrics will provide agents with a quick and efficient method of flagging suspicious behavior that could denote fraud. This works through speech recognition, meaning that even the most advanced fraudsters would struggle to gain access to the information they need.

Voice biometrics could have an important role to play in the future of contact centres.Voice biometrics can help contact centers protect their customers from fraudsters.

3. Changing work patterns

It's no secret that sitting at a desk all day isn't great for your body, or your productivity. Well, even that could be set to change.

Computers and headsets are so ingrained into the stereotypical contact center environment that it's difficult to imagine life without them, but as speech-text technology keeps improving these items may be consigned to the history books. Agents will be free to move around the office, creating a more dynamic workplace and fewer manual administrative tasks.

Going a step beyond this, the numbers of remote workers are also likely to increase. Flexible work arrangements featured in the top five factors that make an employer attractive, according to PwC's Millennials At Work survey. Therefore, finding techniques that enable staff to take greater control over both how and where they work is an important consideration for any contact center manager.

Call Design's ME Mobile App can help with this. Accessible from your agents' smart devices, this piece of software allows employees to keep track of their schedules, apply for leave and swap shifts with colleagues to create timetables that work for them and you. They can do all of this while on the go, which also reduces the pressure on your workforce management team.

While the day-to-day takes up the majority of your time as a contact manager, it's important to keep an eye on the horizon. Call Design has a raft of training and solutions that you can leverage to ensure your contact center is prepared for anything the future might throw at you. For more information, get in touch with our team today.


Retaining staff: A guide for contact centre managers

 

It's no secret that attrition is one of the biggest challenges facing contact centres, and it's something the industry acknowledges. In fact, 40 per cent of contact centre managers want to improve retention rates among staff, according to Deloitte's Global Contact Centre Survey.

So what can you do to hold on to your top performing agents? Let's explore.

Contact centre managers need to know how to deal with unhappy staff.Staff attrition is one of the greatest problems facing contact centre managers.

1. Analyse your hiring process

Reducing contact centre attrition starts with your hiring processes.

It can be difficult to know from a resume how well a candidate may suit your company, but it's important to begin building an idea as early as you can. Cover letters in particular should allow you to gain an understanding of how their past experience sets them up for life in your centre, but also what they expect from the role, and how they might fit into the structures you have in place.

Your hiring process should determine whether someone will slide seamlessly into your culture.

This information can then be added to at the interview. As well as digging deeper into their professional skills, a substantial proportion of this time should be allocated to determining whether the candidate will slide seamlessly into your culture. A good indicator comes in the form of their soft skills.

Soft skills is a category that includes attributes such as communication, leadership and collaboration, all of which permit people to work well alongside others and produce an atmosphere where people want to stay and develop.

2. Establish clear objectives, and clear rewards

Opportunities to progress finished second only to a good work/life balance in the list of factors attracting millennials to a workplace, according to Deloitte's 2016 Millennial Survey. Once hiring is complete, therefore, part of the onboarding process should involve giving your new recruits a clear picture of not only their own role, but what they can do to advance.

Crucial to this is having well-defined and easily available employee handbooks. Among other things, these should detail incentives for good performance, as well as Key Performance Indicator (KPI) targets that need to be met. This approach gives your staff something to aim for beyond their day-to-day targets. Though, as we will see in point four, these are also important when it comes to improving retention in contact centres.

Having a clearly defined progression for employees is a great incentive.Employee handbooks are great ways to show the opportunities for promotion.

3. Personalise incentive schemes

A great way to go the extra mile for your staff, and increase their loyalty to your business, is to personalise the incentives you offer.

This could be something as simple as giving employees a range of options if they're eligible for a reward, showing that you take these processes seriously and aren't simply going through the motions.

Digital rewards are also a great option. Acknowledging high achievers on social networks such as Facebook or LinkedIn provide public acknowledgement of good results, and even a well thought-through email can be an effective way to build manager-staff bonds.

4. Stay on track

Using trackable metrics is an essential aspect of managing agent performance and the quality of client interactions.

This not only ensures that your customers experience a consistently high standard of service, but also allows you to catch potential problems and turn them around.

Tracking performance using metrics gives you the chance to catch problems and provide a solution.

Using metrics allows you to identify areas of weakness and provide the necessary training to bridge gaps. As well as showing interest in the professional development of your individual agents, this proactive management can halt the disenchantment that often comes with poor professional performance. Ultimately this may result in preventing an employee from leaving the company.

However, even when employees aren't missing targets, providing regular commentary to staff, based on the insights gained from metrics, is highly recommended. In fact, 51 per cent of millennials surveyed by PwC said that feedback should be given very regularly or continuously, and the more detailed, the better.

5. Open up your culture

Vital to preventing unnecessary loss of staff is creating a culture where agents feel comfortable talking to management about problems they may be having.

As these issues may range from professional to personal, it's vital that leadership are properly trained to make these interactions productive. As with feedback on trackable metrics, these are opportunities to catch issues before they snowball and provide a resolution that aids with retaining the staff involved.

However, sometimes enlisting the help of outside experts can be the best solution. Call Design's Contact Centre Consulting service is designed to help managers who are too close to identify the root cause of what is preventing an easy fix to culture problems. This service will optimise the running of your contact centre down to the smallest details, including leadership skills that could help you better understand the challenges facing your staff.

Exit interviews allow you to get insights on what went wrong,Exit interviews provide a valuable opportunity to learn how you can improve your systems for future employees.

6. Conduct exit interviews

Even if you adhere to all the guidance mentioned in this article, from time to time staff will leave. Rather than view this as a failure of your retention initiatives, use it as an opportunity to learn why this employee felt it was time to move on.

This is a golden chance where the individual in question is likely to be far more honest than they were during their tenure at the company. If there was no single reason that led to their departure, you can still gain valuable insights on what they feel your organisation does well, and what could be improved.

Learning from past mistakes and engaging with your staff is integral to reducing attrition in your contact centre. However, if you want more information on the relevant professional services you can make use of, get in touch with the team at Call Design today.


Absence management: Methods for reducing worker absenteeism

 

Absenteeism is costing US and Canadian businesses $225.8 billion and $16.6 billion per year respectively. These stats come from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Conference Board of Canada, which highlight the cost of absenteeism in the hourly and salaried workforces.

Understanding the statistics is one thing, but fixing them is another. To help your contact center, we discuss four absence management strategies below:

Absenteeism in the form of excessive sick days be by symptomatic of a larger problem.An increase in sick days may be one of the first symptoms of a growing absenteeism issue in your business.

1. Identify the root cause

Absenteeism is not a problem, it's a symptom of a problem. Most likely a variety of problems, compounding together. Issues that can cause absenteeism include:

  1. Low morale or engagement levels.
  2. Stress or burnout.
  3. Workplace conflicts (e.g. bullying or harassment).
  4. Illness, injury or disability.
  5. Work/life conflicts (e.g. the needs of work and the needs of, say, childcare, conflicting with each other).
  6. Limited consequences for lack of attendance.
  7. Time theft (aka taking elongated breaks, regularly leaving early or turning up late).

Awareness is the first step to solving a problem. Take time to investigate what issues your contact center may be suffering from. This can be done through regular 1:1 personal sessions between staff and their team leader, and through anonymous feedback surveys.

 

2. Create an attendance policy

A clear attendance policy has two major benefits:

  1. It sets out your expectations for attendance so staff and their managers know what is and is not considered acceptable.
  2. It helps you benchmark individual attendance levels against the company expectation, so you can measure their performance. Without this, unconscious bias or favoritism may lead you to challenge some staff more than others.

What goes into an attendance policy?

An attendance policy should include comprehensive descriptions of your expectations around annual leave, sick leave, what constitutes tardiness, leave request procedures, rules around special leave (i.e. bereavement or jury duty) and so on.

This should be included in your employee handbook and all staff should be able to find and access it easily.

Employee wellness programs combine policies, perks and initiatives to encourage staff to better look after themselves.

3. Consider employee wellness programs

Employee wellness programs are typically a combination of policies, perks and initiatives that encourage staff to look after their physical and mental health. This could include discounts at gyms or medical centers, health insurance packages, policies designed to promote better self-care, and environment support (e.g. desk ergonomics, green spaces and so on).

These programs have been found to work. In a Comcare review, it was found that wellness programs such as smoking cessation interventions, physical activity and/or nutrition interventions, and changes to organizational culture showed real health-related benefits to employees.

4. Offer more flexibility

There's a growing call for flexible working around the world. One study by the Intelligence Group showed that 74 percent of the Millennial generation use work-life balance as a leading factor in evaluating job opportunities, while workers in Generation X can find themselves in need of workplace flexibility in order to care for aging parents.

Can your business handle flexible working arrangements? Some contact center leaders find it difficult to accommodate variable hours or working from home due to the schedule-intensive nature of the job. Staff levels must be carefully planned and easy to predict in order for the business to handle call volumes.

However, this is not an unsolvable problem - it just requires a technology upgrade. Consider investigating workforce management solutions that enable smart scheduling and easy shift swapping, as this will help you encourage staff to balance their working lives and personal lives without impacting your company's bottom line or the customer experience.

Choose Call Design to help you

If you aren't sure you can do this alone, it's time to seek help. Call Design is a leading workforce optimization consulting provider, featuring a team of experts with an average of 10+ years of experience. We have an array of WFO tools, solutions and training courses to help your business find and improve the root causes of your absenteeism issues.

To learn more, contact us today.


Why engagement management is vital for contact centres

 

We've all heard the adage that happy staff make for happy customers. A cliche, maybe, but one backed up by data. In fact, companies considered as customer experience leaders have 1.5 times more engaged employees than companies who lag behind, according to research by the Temkin Group.

Contact centres are direct points of interaction between businesses and clients, but there are reasons beyond customer satisfaction that make learning engagement management a must-do for those heading up agent teams.

Let's take a look at a few:

Customers will tell if your staff aren't fully engaged with their tasks.Engaged staff are more likely to have positive customer interactions.

1. It's a real time saver

Contact centres are traditionally flexible environments, and empowering staff to take greater ownership of their schedules is a popular way of increasing agent engagement.

The use of smartphone technology that allows employees to interact with each other, swap shifts and access their schedule remotely not only gives them responsibility for their working hours, but also saves your workforce management team a lot of time rearranging hours on their behalf.

However, implementing this scheme requires thoughtful management in order to maintain control over staffing numbers. It's important that it links with your workforce management tool, and rules are built in to check intraday staffing levels for each skill before allowing swaps to go ahead.

2. You can attract great staff

Millennials are flooding the Australian jobs market, and they rate engagement highly when choosing where to work.

The ability to progress up the career ladder came in first among a list of factors attracting millennials to employers, in a study conducted by PwC, beating even competitive salaries. They also expect regular feedback, praise for good performances and clearly established targets to aim for.

With all of these demands falling under the banner of employee engagement, it's clear that effective management is key for businesses that wish to remain competitive in the world of employment.

Staff feedback can help contact centre managers establish effective engagement strategies.Millennial staff expect regular engagement through feedback from management.

3. ...and keep them

Employees are a staggering 87 per cent less likely to leave a company where they feel highly engaged, as compared with staff in organisations where this sentiment isn't so strong, as claimed by a report from the Kenan-Flagler business school.

In an industry where high turnover rates are the norm, this is research contact centre managers can't afford to ignore. Indeed, individual engagement strategies such as prioritising the recognition and reward of high quality performance can in themselves improve retention, according to a Deloitte survey.

It's important to remember that these initiatives don't happen by magic, and careful planning is needed to ensure they fit the culture in your contact centre.

Effectively managing staff engagement has benefits beyond customer experience vital to the continued success of your business. Call Design's Manager Essentials course is an intensive one-day program tailored to optimise your leadership practices and get the most out of your staff. To find out more, get in touch with our team today.


Why promoting teamwork is crucial to your business

 

Teamwork is the buzzword that stood the test of time. From pre-school onwards we're told, quite rightly, that combined effort can achieve more than that of an individual. For businesses, this concept in itself is a great advocate for the benefits of teamwork; with everyone pushing towards a common goal, greater volumes of work will be done.

However, the rise of technology, and a shift in priorities accompanying the arrival of the millennial workforce, have enhanced the importance of teamwork further. Let's delve into why teamwork is so important for contact centers in the 21st century.

Listen to your employees about ways to optimise your business. Teamwork is taking on new meanings in the digital age.

Greater productivity

It makes sense to start with the most conventional advantage of teamwork: greater productivity. This concept may seem self-explanatory, but understanding that aligning your workforce will result in a higher rate of task completion isn't enough. You need to know why that is the case if you, as a contact center leader, are going to benefit from this collaborative culture:

  • You create an environment of shared responsibility: If you make it clear to staff how their efforts contribute to the success of the team, they will want to make sure that they're pulling their weight, and not dumping extra work on their colleagues. This can be achieved by setting goals at a company level, departmental level or however you organize your office.
  • Teams create healthy competition: Setting individual targets in the context of these overarching aims can also instigate healthy competition among team members who want to be seen to lead the pack.
  • There's protection against the unexpected: Cross-training means skilling staff in different roles so they can cover each other in case of unexpected absences. By allowing your agents to learn from each other you can ensure that productivity remains high even when disaster strikes.

As we will see later on, simply setting goals isn't enough to keep your team members engaged. They need to be consistently measured and reviewed so that you can supply informed feedback to help your agents further their career objectives.

Setting team goals can improve performance at individual and departmental levels.

Idea sharing

One of the traditional characteristics of effective teamwork is good communication. In the past this has mainly referred to sharing information at a peer to peer level, or directives coming down from management.

Both these concepts are still important to the effective functioning of a team, but this shouldn't be where communication ends. Contemporary scrum models of working encourage employee feedback to improve the ideas and methodologies currently being employed. This is especially important to teamwork in the digital age, where new technological solutions are springing up all the time. Regularly engaging staff not only empowers them to feel involved with the improvement of the company, but also gives management a better chance of staying abreast of the myriad of changes going on in the world of business.

Provide opportunities for millennials to upskill and network.Millennials expect a cohesive company culture.

Building a community

Another reason why teamwork is important in the workplace is building a sense of community, something that will be of increasing importance as we welcome more millennials into our offices. This demographic will make up 75 percent of the workforce by 2025, according to Deloitte, and they have some clear expectations when it comes to choosing where to take their skills.

When it comes to teamwork, these desires manifest themselves in two important ways, as shown in a survey by PwC:

  1. Shared values - Employees are drawn to employers who they perceive to share their values.
  2. Inclusivity - In addition, compared to previous generations, millennials place more emphasis on being engaged in a cohesive team, and less on salary.

Popular scrum business models emphasize the importance of employee feedback.

The concept of a cohesive community also feeds back into communication, but in a very specific way. In addition to the two points above, millennials are highly focussed on being able to progress their careers. This means leadership should provide regular feedback on performance, reward success and present opportunities for upskilling.

As well as the obvious business benefits that come with increasing staff skill levels, by listening to millennials' desires employers make themselves more attractive. It's no secret that the job market is becoming increasingly competitive, so if you're interested in attaining, and holding onto, the very best emerging talent, you should consider bringing your company culture into line with these changing expectations.

Great team spirit among your agents requires concerted effort and planing from management - it isn't just going to spring up overnight. Sometimes you can simply be too close to your current way of working to see the problems, which is where Call Design comes in. We offer a tailored consulting service to review how your team operates, and iron out any problems. For more information, get in touch with our team.


What is the contingent workforce and how can you manage it?

In August 2018, over a third of US workers are part of the gig economy. Of these gig workers, more than 10 percent are contingent employees according to the Federal Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Employing these workers presents unique opportunities and challenges for business mangers, but what exactly is the contingent workforce, and how best can you go about managing staff who fall into this category?

Defining the contingent workforce

The contingent workforce refers to people employed by a company on an on-demand, often short-term, basis. Examples include consultants, independent contractors or freelancers who aren't full-time employees and therefore don't appear on the company payroll.

They're often engaged through a recruitment agency to cover staffing shortages and sudden increases in workloads. This workforce offers a flexible solution to these problems without the costs associated with hiring and onboarding full-time employees.

Often staff engaged on this casual basis receive fewer, if any benefits, and lower salaries than permanent personnel. However, bringing in external manpower can be daunting to managers. These people aren't aligned with your business's goals, workflow and culture - so how do you manage them effectively?

Here are some key tips to maximizing the potential benefits of the contingent workforce.

1. Integration is key

Integrating all newcomers is a key responsibility for anyone in a leadership position.

This refers to both social and professional integration, as the two are intrinsically linked. Companies that make workplace collaboration a priority are twice as likely to be profitable, according to research by Deloitte, so encouraging a culture of teamwork and social integration should be top of the to-do list for managers of contingent staff. Have a look at these suggestions for how you can achieve this:

  • Send an email to existing employees prior to the arrival of contingent workers to introduce them.
  • A team lunch or coffee on the first day can be a great welcome and a way for everyone to get to know each other.
  • Provide a volunteer 'buddy' from your permanent workforce to help new staff get used to the surroundings and procedures.
  • Include them in social events outside office hours to help them get to know their peers.

As you would with any new personnel, full onboarding and training should compliment social integration and is integral in allowing contingent workers to effectively complete the tasks you will assign them.

Integrating newcomers is a key responsibility for anyone in a leadership position.

2. Make your expectations clear

One of the challenges of managing the contingent workforce is ensuring they're aligned with the aims and objectives of the organization as a whole.

A crucial step in bringing casual workers up to speed with what's expected of them is setting clear performance targets. These can take the shape of individual and team goals, both of which come with unique benefits:

  • Individual goals: The provision of SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, time-bound) objectives gives something tangible to aim for, as well as providing team leaders with a way to measure performance and progress. This is something we'll return to shortly.
  • Team goals: Including contingent workers in team-wide goals not only aids with the integration process, but also gives them a sense of responsibility and understanding for how their personal efforts impact the team and, by extension, business as a whole.
Both contingent staff and full-time employees should have clear goals.Giving contingent staff clear goals is a good way to engage them with your workflow.

3. Track their performance

Quality management software is a great asset for team leaders. It allows you to to assess the day-to-day performance of staff to ensure standards remain consistently high.

Having core performance data at your fingertips means you can determine whether your contingent staff are achieving the targets you set, and identifies areas where further training is needed. It also provides the opportunity to recognize and praise those exceeding expectations.

One of the challenges of managing the contingent workforce is ensuring they're aligned with your aims and objectives. 

4. Make communication easy

There's a lot to communicate when managing the contingent workforce. As well as providing regular feedback on performance, listening to their experiences is critical to improving your contingent worker strategies in the long term.

Keeping an eye on time frames is also a must. Be open when talking about ongoing work, and when contingent staff are two months out from completing their contract start the conversation about next steps. If your initial reason for engaging them was due to a workload increase, effective forecasting should allow you to plan for future trends, but even if you can't give any concrete information, keeping them in the loop is important if you to wish to renew their contract.

Contingent staff can provide added flexibility to businesses should the unexpected happen, but proper management is key. Call Design provides tailored training and solutions to equip you with the essential skills to effectively unlock the potential of this workforce. For more information, get in touch with our team today.


Shift Bidding for Better Efficiency and Engagement

Without flexibility and room for change, schedules can get stale. Companies can find that schedules are becoming less and less of a good fit for evolving staffing requirements. Some agents, especially Millennial and Gen Z agents, can find that static schedules don’t offer the flexibility they crave. Perhaps junior workers get stranded in less-desirable schedules on weekends, holidays, or in late shifts they they’d prefer not to work. In many cases offering shift bidding more often can increase schedule efficiency and improve overall agent satisfaction. But without a world-class WFM system, Shift Bidding can be complicated and time-consuming. Many businesses find it impractical if not impossible to run a shift bid more than twice a year.

Bid More Often

Here's where our Workforce Management application comes in: with powerful tools to facilitate bids, WFM administrators can create and execute bids in a fraction of the time it took in the past, allowing them to run bids much more often. Some find they can bid for schedules monthly, semi-monthly or even weekly. WFM even makes it possible to run special bids for holidays, or for intraday offerings for OT or Voluntary Time Off.

Balancing Fairness with Performance

Using optimal schedules based on the most up-to-date staffing needs forecast, you can ensure a more efficient fit with changing business requirements. And you control the crucial step of ordering your employees to determine their order in the bid. Consider a ranking method that aligns with your business goals, emphasizes fairness but also incentivizes better performance. Think about a merit-based possibility to engage your staff more. Rather than an abrupt change that causes distress among your agents, you can gradually evolve towards a merit-based shift bid. You can also strike a balance between performance and quality scores for example by using them both in weighted combination.

Communication

Before diving in, carefully consider your strategy for communicating with agents and supervisors. Create a clear, compelling message that tell them why a new Shift Bidding process is under consideration, especially if you are thinking about moving towards a performance-based bidding system. Use Workforce Management to create What-If scenarios that show the benefit of using new schedules for bidding: better staffing efficiency, better customer experience, increased fairness, and the opportunity for agents to have more control over the schedules they work. Listen to agent concerns, make them feel that they are being heard.

And be absolutely sure that your first bid is set up and executed properly; if the agents’ first new bidding experience is poor, they can form a negative opinion that undermines morale. Take advantage of our experienced consultants who have been through this process many times and can help guide you past any pitfalls.

Results in Less Time

When it’s time for agents to bid, you’ll need an efficient interface that allows agents to quickly make their choices and see the results. Make sure they know their position in the bid order so that they can take this into account when ranking their preferred schedules. Our Workforce Optimization Agent Portal provides a clear, easy-to-use interface that shows agents their position in the bid, the schedules available for bidding, and let’s them rank the schedules according to their preferences. Once schedules are assigned and made official, agents immediately see the results in the WFO portal and the optional ME mobile app. All done with no need for manual sign-up sheets or manual reports to communicate results.

The benefits of efficient shift bidding can be impactful: users have seen increases in schedule adherence of 4% or more as well as productivity improvements of 5% or more. Improved schedule efficiency, time savings for WFM admins, improved agent satisfaction offered by shift bidding are only some of the ways that WFM creates impactful change for our customers. Contact the experts at Call Design to discover more.


How an app can boost employee engagement

 

Smartphone applications enhance workplace management and save businesses time and money. With 77% of North Americans using smartphones, and 1 in 5 adults accessing the internet exclusively on smartphones, now is the time for your organization to be at the forefront of this emerging digital trend.

There are a number of clear benefits when it comes to implementing mobile technologies in the workplace. Companies that are more profitable than their competitors are more likely to use mobile apps and to introduce measures such as comprehensive training to facilitate app adoption, according to the 2015 Accenture Mobility Research report.

What is the ME smartphone app?

ME is a workforce management application that's compatible with iOS and Android devices. It enables staff to remotely access their schedule and calendar, monitor their performance, apply for time off, and swap shifts.

Staff can easily organise their work-life via the ME application.Sick leave, work schedules and shift swaps become easier when done through the ME smartphone application.

 ME can help your organization increase efficiency and profitability by:

  • Improving employee engagement

ME's Schedule View function enables staff to interact with each other and their employers. Whether they're on the bus to work in the morning, or sitting in the doctor's waiting room they can easily access their work schedule on the go.

  • Reducing HR expenditure

There's no need to schedule a meeting with HR or to fill out a lengthy form. If an employee wants to book time off or swap a shift, they can do so at the touch of a button. ME's Leave Request function enables staff to ask for annual leave and to receive feedback via notifications. They can also view the status of a request using the Request Viewer function.

Staff can organise their work schedule remotely with ME.With ME, staff can organize shift-swaps without needing to make a phone call or be on site.
  • Improving compliance and productivity

Employees can track their performance with the Agent Productivity function. This enables staff to pinpoint potential areas for improvement, check their productivity statistics and monitor hours worked.

  • Enhancing employee autonomy

If an employee wants to work a different shift, they can access ME's Schedule Trade function to swap their schedule. This increases staff autonomy by allowing shift swaps without staff needing to make a phone call or be on site.

How to seamlessly implement ME into your workplace:

The team at Call Design are here to help with installing, programming and tailoring ME's functions to suit your workplace. We can teach your employees how to use each of the application's features on their smartphones and can provide on-site or remote training for your management team.

If you want to learn more about how ME can benefit you, get in contact with the experts at Call Design today.


Go digital: 5 ways to reward your staff

 

Acknowledging employees for workplace achievement is essential to improve morale and increase retention and productivity. Implementing rewards may sound like an expensive initiative; however, employers can save money by rewarding staff digitally. Discover our top five affordable ways to reward your team.

Call Design Australia can help your business grow.Rewarding staff is a great way to improve retention and boost morale.

1. Send employees personal emails

Sending an email might seem like a very straightforward way to acknowledge staff for workplace contributions; however, a personalized and thoughtfully worded email goes a long way in helping an employee realize their value. It's simple, free and it will motivate and encourage staff to continue to excel in their field.

2. Introduce gamified strategies

Gamification is a fun way to motivate and reward staff via healthy competition.

Gamification is the process of adding games or fun elements to a task. It can increase workplace participation, and it's a fun way to motivate and reward staff while implementing healthy competition among teams. Rewards can be based on individual or team targets such as the percentage of calls handled by type or total talk time. Based on the outcome, prizes like a team lunch or a coffee voucher will boost staff morale and productivity.

3. Give an online gift card

Corporate gift cards are an easy way to reward employees with differing interests. By personalizing a gift card, you can show that you're aware of what motivates an individual, and have taken the time to think about a gift you know they'll appreciate.

Reward employees with the chance to attend training, industry events and talks.Providing employees with opportunities to upskill will show that you're invested in their future.

4. Acknowledge staff on a social platform

Acknowledgements on social platforms such as LinkedIn or Workplace by Facebook are an excellent way to boost staff morale and to publicly reward employees for their contribution. Employees will be able to interact with one another by liking, sharing and commenting on their colleagues' achievements. This can heighten team communication and create a sense of comradery.

5. Provide opportunities for professional development

Employees are always looking for ways to develop and to improve their skill set. Providing the chance for them to take an online course, attend a training session, motivational talk or industry event is a great way to reward their hard work and to show that you are invested in their future and career progression. Call Design's training courses are the perfect way to upskill staff and optimize your workplace.

If you're looking for more ways to motivate your staff and improve productivity, get in contact with the experts at Call Design today.


How to empower agents and increase productivity

 

If you're able to empower your employees, increased productivity will be a byproduct. Find out how to successfully optimize your workplace to ensure your agents are empowered and engaged.

Find out how to optimise your workplace with Call Design.Are you looking for new ideas to increase productivity and decrease staff turnover?

Upskill managers and empower staff

Upskilling managers is the best investment a business can make - it opens doors and provides new learning opportunities which can be passed on to other employees. This culture of development creates a workplace that is never stagnant but is continually evolving.

Call Design's training courses are designed to improve staff performance and to hone management skills. The manager essentials course teaches managers to manage their team effectively, monitor staff performance, provide effective coaching and keep staff engaged. No matter which course you're interested in, Call Design will maximize your time spent learning and can cover everything from coaching employees and providing feedback to setting challenging yet achievable KPIs.

Optimize workplace health and wellbeing

People employed in more sedentary occupations, such as administrative workers, spend an average of 22 hours per week sitting for work. Unfortunately, It's likely that in workplaces such as contact centers, these numbers are even higher.

Discover a Call Design training course to empower contact centre staff.Employers can implement standing desks and provide exercise balls for employees to sit on.

Sedentary behaviour in the workplace can lead to to adverse health outcomes, which can decrease employee productivity and engagement. To encourage employees to move around more, employers can implement standing desks or tables and can provide the option of exercise balls for employees to sit on. Standing or walking meetings are a great way to ensure staff spend less time sitting.

Managers can also look at implementing some lunchtime workplace challenge using sports or active games where employees can compete with each other to win points and prizes. Sometimes just making sure employees get up from their desk and take a walk around the office can dramatically increase morale and productivity.

Increase employee flexibility (ME)

Empowered staff are those that feel trusted in their ability to make their own decisions, to work autonomously and to regularly upskill. Software such as Call Design's workforce management tool, (ME) offers employees the ability to use an application their phones to view their schedules, apply for leave and see their adherence wherever they are. This app increases autonomy by allowing schedule adjustments without staff needing to be in the office.

If you're interested in growing your business by empowering staff and optimizing your workforce get in touch with the Call Design team today.