“injixo has saved us lots of time. It helps us to be proactive, not reactive. And to operate our contact centre with improved efficiency” Derrabella Hadley, Head of Customer Service
Derrabella Hadley is Head of Customer Service at Leicestershire County Council (LCC). A highly experienced, award-winning contact centre professional, she has over 20 years of customer service experience in the retail, telecommunications, and public sectors.
She’s particularly adept in the field of workforce planning and is familiar with several well-known workforce management systems.
Leicestershire County Council is a local government organisation covering the whole of the county of Leicestershire, excluding the city of Leicester itself.
It is based at County Hall, Glenfield, and employs thousands of people across multiple industries and specialties. LCC has a dedicated Customer Service Centre (CSC) responsible for handling enquiries from residents on a variety of topics.
These include queries relating to highways, waste, school admissions, blue badge, and many more. In common with many councils, Leicestershire is constantly striving to deliver great local services, while empowering employees and respecting the environment, all within strict budgets.
Many aspects of LCC’s operation are seasonal. This, combined with the huge diversity in the types of contacts that LCC has to handle, makes accurate forecasting problematic.
As a result, forecast accuracy was variable, particularly in peak seasons, and that adversely impacted the customer experience.
Handling the disparate enquiry types requires a complex skills setup in the CSC, which makes scheduling a real challenge.
For years, the CSC had tried to get by with spreadsheets for workforce planning, as well as with an outdated telephony platform.
Spurred on by the impacts of COVID-19, LCC upgraded the telephony platform, and the time also came to switch from spreadsheets to a professional workforce management application.
“For a long time the CSC had worked without a WFM system. We can’t imagine going back now!”
Derrabella is familiar with many well-known WFM systems, so she quickly drafted her selection criteria.
She needed the ability to forecast and calculate required staffing levels for multiple channels. The ability to schedule a multi-skilled workforce quickly and easily was important.
Good real-time management that integrated with the communications platform was a must. And the system needed an easy-to-use employee portal to improve engagement and take the workforce with her on the journey to better planning outcomes.
The injixo Journey
Once LCC selected injixo, the setup was rapid, for several reasons. Implementing injixo does not require a large investment of IT time.
Integration with the communications platform can be done by a planner with limited assistance from IT or the platform vendor.
The training was conducted by one of the injixo consultants, all of whom are former planners with many years of first-hand experience.
He was able to advise Derrabella’s team about how to set up injixo to meet the specific goals of the CSC and injixo went live on the date that was agreed upon in the kick-off meeting.
Value and Achievements
Using injixo, Derrabella’s team has improved the performance of the CSC in several areas.
Forecasting used to be a manual process, involving tedious and error-prone cross-checking of year-on-year volumes with predictions.
Now forecasting is almost completely automatic, and its accuracy has improved dramatically. LCC now tracks forecast accuracy and there is an improving trend.
This results from an ever-increasing set of historical data to feed injixo’s machine-learning algorithms and the fact that it’s possible to easily add business intelligence to teach the algorithms about special events.
Seasonal peaks and troughs were previously tough to manage, but with injixo, they are clearly visible, so that the CSC can proactively manage them.
Pre-injixo, rotas were published no more than a week in advance, so advisors lacked certainty about the schedules and activities they would be working further into the future. Manual adjustments needed to be made daily.
Break times simply alternated from month to month. Now LCC can schedule weeks in advance, optimising staffing levels around demand with lunches and breaks scheduled at times that have minimum impact on staff coverage.
Using the injixo Meetings feature, team meetings, 1:1s, and training are scheduled in time slots that have the least impact on service level.
As a result of schedules that are optimised around demand, occupancy and productivity have improved. injixo has unlocked the potential of the ‘gig economy’ for the CSC, by making it simpler to employ staff on a casual basis to best meet peaks through the year.
Shrinkage was hard to monitor and to manage in the past. With injixo, the visibility of advisor activities has been transformed, so shrinkage can be managed much more effectively. Shrinkage levels are now in line with expectations.
Managing schedule adherence was a manual process before. Now, the injixo real-time adherence feature, together with summary adherence reporting, has enabled LCC to continuously monitor and improve adherence levels.
Real-time management as a whole has become more proactive than reactive. Intraday interventions are needed less frequently than before injixo, mostly because the forecast is now much more accurate.
LCC now has a cloud-based telephony platform and WFM system. This combination has enabled a smooth transition from office to home and hybrid working.
Last but not least, injixo is saving LCC at least one hour of planning time per day, while improving outcomes for customers, advisors, and the council.
Derrabella looks forward to driving further efficiencies for the CSC via continuous improvements in forecast accuracy, schedule optimisation, and schedule adherence.
She’s also planning to explore opportunities to apply WFM outside the contact centre. LCC is adopting a ‘one council’ approach which moves away from departmental silos.
‘One council’ is about identifying ways to reduce and better handle demand to become a modern, efficient organisation, applying best practices across all departments. Workforce planning definitely has the potential to be part of that.
“injixo has saved us lots of time. It helps us to be proactive, not reactive. And to operate our contact centre with improved efficiency”
We’re honoured to have Leicestershire County Council as an injixo customer.This blog post has been re-published by kind permission of injixo – View the Original Article
For more information about injixo - visit the injixo Website
Call Centre Helper is not responsible for the content of these guest blog posts. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect those of Call Centre Helper.