How to Improve Forecast Accuracy


In this video Chris Dealy, WFM Evangelist at injixo, explains what can be done to improve forecast accuracy.

Four Tips to Improve Forecast Accuracy

I’ve got a few tips for you about improving your forecast accuracy.

Tip One – Focus on the Right Metric

Chris Dealy at injixo
Chris Dealy

So the first one is to make sure that you basically focus on the right metric, and the trick there is to use the number of offered contacts, not the handled contacts.

Because what you want to forecast is the number of intended contacts that you receive, whether they’re chats, or calls, or whatever.

If you just use those that you handle, you’re excluding the abandons, which isn’t really what you want. You want to be looking at the contacts that customers attempted to make.

Top Two – Choose the Right Forecast Method

Second tip is to choose a forecasting method that works best with your data, in your contact centre.

Now bit of a plug for Call Centre Helper here – there’s a brilliant article written by somebody called Jonty Pearce, you may have heard him, called the latest techniques for call centre forecasting.

It’s a brilliant overview of the different algorithms there, and the tip is to experiment with each of those to find which one works best, with each queue, for each channel, in your contact centre.

And also bear in mind that might change over time, so you need to revisit that regularly. Now again a modern AI-based, you know machine learning, forecasting engine will do that for you.

Always search for the best algorithm, and the best model of that algorithm, but it’s definitely something you should think about, don’t use the same technique every time.

Tip Three – Learn From Past Experience

The third tip is to use what you learned when you were measuring forecast accuracy each time you do a forecast.

So you’ve got to be removing anomalies, so when we compared forecast and actual, you know can you find the explanation of why that went wrong.

Was it because there was an event, or an outage, or something like that, and then you can remove those things, or plan for those things next time around.

And that’s about adding what they call business intelligence, so if you know that there’s a marketing campaign, that’s what threw you off last time, next time that marketing campaign is run build that into your forecast, as a kind of exception, or an event as it’s called in injixo.

It could be anything like marketing campaigns, price changes, product launches, that kind of thing.

Tip Four – Continuous Improvement

And the final tip is it’s a never-ending story improving forecast accuracy. You should be looking to continuously improve, and measuring each time, which we talked about earlier, and find the root causes and aim to get better each time around.

Thanks to Chris Dealy at injixo for contributing to this video.

If you are looking for more great insights from the experts, check out these videos next:

Author: Chris Dealy
Reviewed by: Robyn Coppell

Published On: 5th Mar 2024 - Last modified: 17th May 2024
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