On Aug, 5 2022
From a distance, the job of a workforce management (WFM) analyst can seem easy and straightforward. They aren’t assisting customers and they have their fancy WFM software to crunch data and generate schedules in a few minutes.
So, what exactly do they do all day?
The answer is A LOT. Below is an example of the day-to-day life of a real WFM analyst working within a financial industry contact center.
HOW DO YOU START THE DAY?
The day kicks off with checking for any call-ins related to who is sick or running late. Then it’s time to evaluate who needs to take the day off or leave early. All of this is currently handled via voice mail or text messages but could be streamlined by using an automated schedule attendance monitor (ASAM) solution within WFM software. This technology would enable agents to communicate with the software directly and update their status (i.e. late check-in) directly through a mobile WFM app. It would eliminate the need for communicating outside the application.
WHAT DOES YOUR MORNING USUALLY LOOK LIKE?
Most of the morning is spent doing adherence reviews and reporting from the previous day. Manual adjustments are made within the WFM software system for anything that occurred but wasn’t accounted for. For example, if there was an extra meeting or a training session ran long, adherence would need to be adjusted to reflect any discrepancies not caused by the agent. After this, different reports are pulled from the WFM software and phone systems. They are combined into a summary report which is shared with upper management.
HOW ABOUT THE AFTERNOON IN THE CONTACT CENTER?
It can vary but sometimes it involves changing the schedules of agents in real time. If it’s a busy day, training sessions will be cancelled so more people are on the phones. Lunches and breaks can also be moved around.
Forecasting can also be completed during this time. It happens once a week and covers a period that is two weeks in advance. Shift preferences and shift bidding are allowed but split shifts are not. The concept of split shifts was entertained but the agents didn’t have a lot of interest in the solution. It’s not a fit for this contact center right now.
Later in the afternoon time is carved out to approve or deny agent time off (PTO). This can take up to two hours but at a minimum is around one hour. The big thing to look for is ensuring PTO doesn’t conflict with any scheduled training. Checking PTO accrual balances to see if an agent has the hours available to take off is currently a manual process. Ideally in the future it would great to utilize the time off management solution within WFM software and have these accrual totals pulled in via an integration with the HR system.
As you can see, the life of a WFM analyst isn’t as easy as it may appear to be. The role requires a unique individual with discipline and an ability to make the right decisions quickly. There is also a need for strong communication skills not only with agents about their schedules but also with management about the overall contact center performance.
Shout out to all the WFM analyst out there… we appreciate you!