Tip of the Week

  • How do you raise or lower agent occupancy?

    February 12 – 

    Are you being pressured to raise or lower occupancy in your call center?  Unfortunately, occupancy is not a goal that can be set without understanding the trade-offs.

    Think of speed of answer (service level or ASA) on one end of a teeter-totter and occupancy on the other end.  Assuming you maintain a constant workload, if speed of answer gets faster (raises) then occupancy will be lower. You will need more people to answer the phone more quickly and that means spreading the same workload among more people and that means lower occupancy for each person.  If you want higher occupancy, then speed of answer will necessarily be lowered (slower) as you remove team members to increase each individual’s occupancy.

    The only way to modify this effect is to change the workload.  You can cross-train and combine teams or using skill-based routing and this increases the team size and occupancy will rise automatically as fewer people are needed in these larger teams to maintain the speed of answer goal.   Or if you want to lower occupancy, you can accomplish this by splitting teams into smaller groups but you will need more total people than if you combine the teams.

    Note:  This week’s tip provided by Maggie Klenke.  She may be reached at Maggie.klenke@mindspring.com

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