Workforce Optimization

Optimizing Your Workforce: Tips for Better Scheduling and Work Allocation

April 27, 2023

6

 min

In today's fast-paced and competitive business environment, it is essential to improve the efficiency of your workforce to remain profitable and sustainable. 

Workforce optimization can help organizations to achieve their goals by aligning employee skills, resources, and processes with their strategic objectives.

You can optimize your workforce using various software applications and technologies, such as workforce management software, performance analytics, and quality monitoring tools. These automated solutions streamline several workforce-related tasks, such as scheduling, time tracking, training, and performance management.

Optimizing Business Performance: Key Workforce Optimization Methods

Some of the best WFO methods for businesses include:

Forecasting:

This involves work prediction, which means analyzing the timeline for a project. Accurate forecasting allows businesses to allocate resources more efficiently, ensuring having the right number of people in the right place at the right time. Forecasting can change based on historical data, seasonal trends, and other factors.

Scheduling:

After forecasting, the next step is scheduling. It involves assigning employees to specific tasks and shifts. Optimized scheduling will help avoid overstaffing and understaffing.

Enhancing Business Efficiency: Verint's Forecasting and Scheduling Solutions

Verint’s Forecasting and Scheduling solutions comprise artificial intelligence (AI), which helps gain agility and automate forecasts with accuracy. It helps reduce staffing costs, improve employee retention, and more.

Real-time monitoring:

Real-time monitoring involves tracking employee performance and adjusting schedules or resource allocation as needed. This can help businesses respond quickly to changes in demand or unexpected events.

Performance analysis:

Performance analysis involves analyzing the in-hand data to identify the areas where performance can be improved and then planning the next strategic steps. This can help businesses identify training needs, improve processes, and optimize resource allocation.

In this blog, we will share some tips for better scheduling and work allocation for your resources using Forecasting and Scheduling solutions. 

So let us dive in!  

Workforce Scheduling Tips

A study by Salesforce and Forbes highlighted that revenue growth is linked to high employee experience, regardless of customer experience prioritization. 70% of executives that participated agreed that improved employee experience leads to improved customer experience. (Source: https://www.salesforce.com/form/conf/forbes-ex-cx-growth/).

Below is a list of five WFM scheduling tips that can help improve your employee experience.

  • Use flexible scheduling: Implementing flexible scheduling options can help increase employee satisfaction, reduce turnover rates, and improve customer service. Flexible scheduling allows employees to work at their preferred times and helps balance their work and personal lives. This can include alternatives like split shifts, compressed workweeks, or job-sharing. According to FlexJobs’ 2022 Career Pulse Survey, from 4000 respondents, 63% choose better work-life balance over better pay. (Source: https://www.flexjobs.com/blog/post/work-life-balance-or-better-pay-two-thirds-choose-balance).
  1. Involve employees in scheduling: Involving employees in scheduling decisions can help improve morale and employee satisfaction. Giving employees some control over their schedules makes them feel valued and improves engagement. This can include allowing employees to request specific shifts or even to participate in creating their work schedule.

Through monthly or weekly meetings, employees can be informed about the work that is planned for them. It helps the manager and the employee in better planning. 

  • Monitor adherence to schedules: Monitoring adherence to schedules is critical to ensure that employees are utilizing the working hours they are scheduled for. It helps managers identify and address attendance issues, reduce delays, and prevent absenteeism.

A study from Texas State University clearly states that job satisfaction and absenteeism are interrelated. When employees feel overburdened by work or disengaged, they tend to avoid showing up at work. (Source: https://digital.library.txstate.edu/bitstream/handle/10877/3429/fulltext.pdf?sequence=1). 

  • Provide regular breaks and time off: Regular breaks and time off are essential to maintain employee health, safety, and productivity. Allowing employees to take breaks and time off helps them recharge and can reduce stress and burnout. Flexible break schedules and time off options such as vacations, personal days, and sick leave should be a part of your work plan.
  • Use automation to optimize scheduling: Automation can help managers schedule optimization by identifying the most efficient staffing levels based on historical data, business needs, and employee availability. Automation can also help reduce scheduling errors and save time by automating routine scheduling tasks such as shift swaps and time-off requests. 

All the above features are included in WFM scheduling solutions. Deploying a good workforce management tool is almost always beneficial.

Verint’s Forecasting and Scheduling solutions help improve both employee and customer experience while helping you achieve your business goals.

The solutions’ key features include:

  • Helping to manage all of your employees, whether working remotely or in the office, as one workforce.
  • Guiding the creation of flexible schedules where agents can switch channels and tasks throughout their shifts.
  • Leveraging the peaks and valleys of work across employee types to improve efficiency and reduce staffing costs.

With a better overview of your workforce, you can use AI to intelligently forecast and schedule resources to fulfill customer demand across traditional and digital channels.

Guardian Life, a Fortune 250 mutual life insurance company, aimed to simplify, modernize, and automate its workforce planning capabilities to balance the needs of its customers with those of its employees. The challenge in terms of the workforce was only 20% staff was in the contact center, while 80% of the staff resided in back-office processing units. The company successfully achieved its goal by migrating its Verint Workforce Management to the cloud and expanding it beyond contact center operations to cover its back-office functions. Verint's purpose-built functionalities, including work item tracking, extended service goals, and backlog management, facilitated Guardian's initiative to expand workforce planning across all back-office areas.

As a result, Guardian increased productivity by up to 20%, reduced shrinkage from 30% to as low as 13%, and saved millions by reducing overall staffing requirements by 8% and overtime by 30%. 

(Source: https://www.verint.com/resources/guardian-life/).

WFM Work Allocation Tips

It is a crucial responsibility of a project manager to assign tasks to each team member. 

The following tips can guide a project manager in better work allocation:

Gain Insight into Your Workforce:

Before work allocation, it is vital to understand the skills, strengths, and weaknesses of your workforce. This will help ensure that work is allocated to the right person with the right skills.
A study conducted by International Labour Organization states that employees deliver more when engaged in work with their expertise. Also, it highlighted the importance of training and development programs for the employees to feel valued. (Source:http://ilo.org/wcmsp5/groups/public/@ed_norm/@relconf/documents/meetingdocument/wcms_092054.pdf).

Utilize Workload Management Tools:

Implement tools to help manage and balance workload across your workforce. These tools can help you avoid overloading certain employees while others remain underutilized.
According to the studies, overloading employees with work reduces productivity by 68%.(Source: https://thrivemyway.com/productivity-stats/).
Workload management software from Trello, Asana, and Verint can help teams track the progress of tasks and ensure even work allocation.

Establish Task Prioritization:

Prioritize tasks based on their urgency, importance, and complexity. This can help ensure that employees are first working on the critical jobs. 

Maintain Clear Communication Channels:

When allocating work, it is essential to communicate clearly and effectively. This includes providing detailed instructions, deadlines, and expectations.

Verint Work Allocation Manager is an automation tool that captures, compiles, and prioritizes work from any source system. It allows the work to be pushed to employees or for employees to select work items from a prioritized list based on business rules. This tool is particularly useful for claims processing, loan production, and other customer support areas as it helps keep employees focused on important tasks. It also enables managers to monitor completion and act proactively to avoid service-level issues. By ensuring accurate and timely completion, Verint Work Allocation Manager can help reduce costly overtime, errors, and rework; thus, improving customer satisfaction.

If you have more questions or require guidance on work scheduling or allocation, contact us at https://sparsolutions.com/contact-us. Our team will help you solve all your doubts and find better solutions to meet your business goals.

Workforce Management

Scheduling Tips

Real-time Monitoring

Performance Analysis

Work Allocation Strategies

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