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Workforce Management Creates Successful Home Agents

 
September 25, 2008



Managing a workforce can be a challenging task, especially for contact centers that attempt to control their workforce using manual methods. If the contact center has deployed a home-based agent platform for its customer service operations, the need for assistance in managing this workforce can be even greater.


According to a recent survey, contact center managers are increasingly hiring employees who will work from home. In fact, nearly half of the survey respondents reported that they plan to extend their workforce to remote or home-based agents to assist in addressing the challenges inherent in recruiting skilled agents.

The survey, which was conducted by data, voice and IP solutions provider, Integ, show that the amount of remote and home-based contact center agents will more than double in the next two years. Of those contact centers that participated in the survey, 18 percent currently employ home-based agents.

This figure is expected to grow to 37 percent by 2010. Integ expects that during the same period, 45 percent of companies will have call center agents in remote – although not home-based – offices.

If these numbers come to fruition, contact center managers will be increasingly seeking solutions that make the management of dispersed agents more effective.

Monet Software’s Workforce Management System provides contact center managers with the applications needed to deliver an efficient and productive workforce, regardless of location. With the right partners, the contact center can find success with home-based agents.
 
Ian Poole, CEO of Integ, noted that contact center employers are increasingly recognizing the need for some employees to work from different locations. Therefore, they are driving the demand for technology that will allow employees to work from anywhere.

Problems with employment are helping to drive the growing demand for remote employment. For contact centers, hiring is often done based on the available labor pool within a geographic area. If the experience, skills and education of this pool is limited, so is the contact center in its ability to hire the right candidates.

Companies are also finding that remote employment or home-based offices can provide more workplace flexibility, reduce employee travel and benefits. It can also allow the center to more effectively schedule agents during peak call times.

Of those contact center mangers participating in the survey, 70 percent report that offering remote employment will attract good candidates who are seeking part-time or home-based employment. The platform delivers a level of flexibility that allows for a broader reach when seeking out qualified candidates.

In order for these contact centers to not only implement a home-based platform, but to also ensure its success, they must have the tools necessary to effectively manage the dispersed workforce.

Monet WFM OnDemand is the company’s newest product that packs every award-winning feature from both the Monet Workforce Management System and Monet AnyWhere into a flexible hosted model. Monet OnDemand takes easy installation and immediate ROI yet another step ahead of the competition.
 
Monet WFM’s features can be accessed from anywhere in the world from nearly any operating system (Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, BSD). It gives agents the ability to work from their home office and even make their own work schedules. Low monthly pricing means budget is no longer an issue, and hosted servers mean that no IT staff is needed for support.

Susan J. Campbell is a contributing editor for TMCnet and has also written for eastbiz.com. To read more of Susan's articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Michelle Robart