Richard Mill of Business Systems shares his advice for assessing your contact centre and back-office processes to achieve operational improvements.
In today’s digital economy, juggling the necessity to maintain cost efficiencies and customer expectations along with the growing demands of compliance is a difficult call for contact centre management.
As companies grow and diversify their contact centres in line with the trend for omnichannel, they change their environment from a single to a multi-sourced one.
At the same time, customers are wanting companies to anticipate their every need. Contact centres, however, are continually challenged at finding the right solution in a changing marketplace.
There may be a solution to this dilemma, however, in a new approach we have dubbed QPP, which stands for improving queue, people and performance management. It is a concept that has been of assistance to ReAssure, part of the Swiss Re group.
ReAssure operates in the life pensions and health business as well as the acquisition of life insurance brands and runs 3.3 million policies for several major UK Life Assurers.
Its operations include three main UK sites and one offshore site with 2,000 employees that includes 800 personnel working in customer service.
Its existing business processes and systems were unable to effectively transfer and record data across its four locations. Management was getting increasingly worried about the brand’s ability to deliver consistent customer excellence in line with its growth on the back of these systems. This often resulted in staff managing their own queues, bringing about a lack of continuity.
ReAssure was finding it impossible to deliver against required KPIs, so the leadership team opted to put a structured internal excellence drive in place. Part of this included deploying a new back-office workforce optimization solution which managed QPP and truly delivered to allow agents to better manage their work pipeline.
A Journey to Contact Centre Digital Transformation and Workforce Optimization
Central to this concept is an advanced way of working with real-time management data. This would only be possible by accurately assessing and improving agent productivity, plugging any skills shortages in teams aligning KPI management with changing client and regulatory demands.
This was made possible by applying QPP using the WFO suite – OpX. The applications making up OpX are designed to support contact centre digital transformation and workforce optimization of both the front and the back office.
ReAssure’s engagement with QPP thinking results directly in a 15% increase in the number of transactions processed per agent. Operating costs, propensity costs and telephone bills were reduced by 15%, 50% and 12% respectively. On top of this there was a 10% increase in customer satisfaction.
These are significant improvements by anyone’s standards. But they also make for a 360 degree view across all four geographical sites, maximizing load-balancing opportunities across each. This has resulted in true Next Day processing, accurate alignment of team progress against incoming tasks to measure productivity and adept quality controls. This includes check lists to monitor and support exact processing.
ReAssure now has real time operational insight through a comprehensive set of KPI dashboards and in-depth reporting. Team leaders know they are always in control, while service level agreement (SLA) adherence is automatically handled by delivering work to the appropriately skilled agent for processing.
Team leaders can also concentrate on high-value work, as they don’t need to be ploughing through spreadsheets and so can be proactively coaching their staff and looking forwards, not backwards. Even better, they can also see where they need to reallocate resources, plan for future workloads, and identify skills gaps.
By working effectively with the right management data to allow for real-time, end-to-end management and visibility of workflow, a dynamic queue management capability can be mapped from agents to team leaders, raising accountability and improving overall performance.
ReAssure has undoubtedly benefited from QPP, both in terms of capacity and quality control, which has had a positive impact on its bottom line. QPP could achieve just the same outcome for your contact centre, and as part of your development plans to deliver the right outcomes to customers every time.