Time Back for Advisors Stuck On Calls?

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Time Back for Advisors Stuck On Calls?

I wanted to see how other companies manage the issue of Advisors requesting time back for being stuck on a call.

Scenario is Advisor requests to claim back 10 mins for being ‘stuck on a call’ the previous day for 10 mins. Some advisors are expecting this as a right and some advisors are viewing it as ‘part and parcel’ of the role.

My concern is advisors planning on being stuck on a call one day in order to leave early on another day.

How else do others manage this situation?

Thanks in advance

Question asked by stemiller78

Call Monitoring

Do you not have call monitoring? Can you not pull recordings to see what’s happening?

Predictive diallers do all sorts of wonderful reports showing down time, extra toilet trips amongst a multitude of other sins. I bet most would have more than enough time in there to actually owe you.

The easiest way to solve this problem would be to let staff know there will be no time claimed back, it goes with the territory. Most if not all agents have enough unexplained down time in their working day/week to more than cover the odd over run here and there.

However if you constantly have this problem and it genuinely isn’t the agents fault then maybe overtime should be considered?

With thanks to Bailey

ACD Reports and Call Monitoring

Yeah we check what advisors are doing through the ACD reports and call monitoring etc etc. We have gone down the No time back route and this was challenged by HR and the Unions as we work for Local Government.

The Council has a policy of flexi time across the board which we cant do due to the size of the Centre and the resource challenge that would bring. So we then offered overtime if a call lasted over 15 mins. This wasn’t ideal as advisors tended to string out the call!

We now have budget limitations where we cannot offer overtime and we have an ever increasing number of advisors challenging us for time to be given back to them which we cannot afford! I just wondered how others dealt with this issue.

I particularly like the standpoint of ‘it comes with the territory’ as I am the planner and forecaster! However my viewpoint gets challenged by HR.

With thanks to stemiller78

Alternate Shifts

Would it not be possible to finish them all 15 minutes earlier? If not in its entirety then maybe a staggered approach? half & half, one week normal finish one week earlier?

The money saved could then pay those that insist on extra time and keep HR happy.

It may also bring about group debate, where not all will be impressed. Finishing earlier every other week and losing 2.5 hours pay over a 4 week month just so the odd ones can have 10 minute pay once or twice a week? It will not work in their favour and your more astute agent will pick this up.

At this point, I would throw it out to the call centre to vote let them choose my guess is it will stay as it is, as the majority will rule and chances are they will not challenge their own…

Should the vote go the other way you would of course honour it.

Just a thought, and a complete nightmare for wages so its about weighing up the pro’s and cons and costs again! 🙂

With thanks to Bailey

Accepted for the Role

As a norm it would usually just be accepted as part of the role, its not a fair one when using the approach of if an agent is late logging in then they have to work time back.

But generally in places I have worked it has been the case that the time is not given back to the agent, normally they should be passing on the call to a colleague if availability allows once they have gone 5-10 mins over their finishing time.

With thanks to Wilsons

Certainly a Contentious Subject

Certainly a contentious subject and I appreciate the extra constraints placed on you as a Local Council.

Have you thought about perhaps providing them with another reward that isn’t pay/time related and such a burden on the council…or are you worried that will be abused as well?

Another option would be to perhaps integrate this with performance metrics. Only people with Quality Scores of 85%+ get their time back…this way you a driving the right behavior in the Contact Centre, and rewarding those who are likely NOT to be the ones abusing the system.

Let me know your thoughts,

With thanks to GuyBSL

Make Sure There’s Not a Behavioral Issue

I think its also important to make sure there’s not a behavioral issue among the agents who always find a way to leave bang on X:59:99… you’ll be amazed at some of the tricks these kids can find out… like incorrectly logging off dallier, pressing F9, leaving a 2nd outbound line open that doesn’t show on the real time monitoring screens but does block inbound calls, all sorts of bizarreness.

Generally speaking, a good TL should be on top of this kind stuff and know which guys are the ones working their socks off and getting stuck on a call at the end of everyday and just getting totally fed up with the lack of ownership from others in the team — who may not be pulling their weight in this respect?

If its someone like that, then I would instantly give them back in lieu but at a time that suits the business needs.

With thanks to DevenK

Part and Parcel of Your Job

I’ve been a call centre agent and have since worked in Planning for >10 years, across two large companies and it’s not something I have ever seen or experienced being offered. I think you have to accept this as part and parcel of your job, in my opinion. As previously eluded to by another poster, you could counter argue with shift adherence, breaks etc.

If you are truly tied into this policy, perhaps investigate whether you can take advisors shifts into account in your call routing i.e if an agent is within your AHT + 30 seconds of an off phone event (break/shift finish) then move the agent to the back of the queue, thus decreasing likelihood of receiving a call?

With thanks to DanH

Author: Jonty Pearce

Published On: 12th Apr 2022 - Last modified: 5th May 2022
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