Ask the Experts: Workforce Management and Contact Centers

Welcome to Ask the Experts, brought to you by In this video, Intelisys’ Cloud Evangelist Brandon Knight discusses how workforce management software keeps contact center budgets in line while improving service levels with NICE InContact’s Aaron Goodwin. Learn more about contact center solutions from the NICE inContact team here:

Brandon: We’re back. This is our Ask the Experts segment, and this one’s on workforce optimization and workforce management. So, we’re going to bring back into the studio Aaron Goodwin from InContact. Aaron, how’s it going buddy?
Aaron: It’s going great. Thank you for having me.
Brandon: Good, good. So, this is a unique one. So, I know you guys have some cool stuff you’re doing, but before I jump to that, let’s talk about workforce management overall. Why is it so important to the operation of a contact center?
Aaron: Yeah, so workforce management software is important because it helps businesses keep costs in line while making sure that they can maintain their service levels. And so, the translation there is 80% of a contact center budget are the human beings that sit in the seats and take calls and manage communications–the agents. So, that’s the biggest part of the overall budget. Businesses want to be careful not to overstaff, right? Because they want to keep costs in line. But it’s also important that they have enough agents in their seats to accept calls and all the other communications–emails, chat sessions. And keep the service levels in line so that you don’t queue people up longer than you need to and you don’t lose callers and give people a bad experience.
So, that balance there is something that workforce management software helps companies achieve because that becomes very complex and complicated to do by a human being once you exceed, say, 50 agents within a contact center.
Brandon: Agreed, agreed. I want to switch gears a little bit because you guys have kind of fulfilled on an unspoken promise a little bit. When NICE inquired InContact, those of us in the industry were wondering how that was going to affect a little of a contentious point in our industry–which is the integration, or the lack thereof in most cases, between the WFM suite and the contact center product. You guys have really resolved that in a big way. Talk to me about your integration.
Aaron: Yeah, that’s a really good point because that point of contention has always been the feed from the ACD. Those calls coming off that ACD, or the metadata from that ACD, over to that workforce management platform. That’s a critical point of integration because the accuracy of the information from the ACD leads to the accuracy of forecasting and scheduling that comes out of WFM. So, with most other products out there–in fact, probably all that don’t have single platform like InContact–you’ve got to have that integration in there and it can become a problem if the ACD is not providing accurate information to the workforce management platform.
So, what we’ve got is a single solution, a single stream of data, coming from our ACD into our workforce management platform. Therefore, providing businesses the ability to perfectly, accurately forecast future agent staffing needs.
Brandon: Awesome, awesome. Aaron, thank you so much for your time. And a few partners out there that are either looking into the contact center or space, or expanding, keep in mind the importance of workforce management, workforce optimization. Be ready to have the conversation with your prospects. You can find out more about workforce management later on in this certification. And you can also find out more about InContact if you check them out on iCSU.