Illustration by Eric Jackson

Despite a lot of industry conference activity in May (or possibly because of), Pipeline readers found the time to read about contact center cost management, balanced decision-making, workforce management, remote access solutions and virtual training models. The following were our most popular posts in May.

Driving Margins by Minimizing Contact Center Costs
Understanding your contact center costs is vital to successful management and administration of your center. Before we begin the discussion about reducing your cost per call, we first need to make sure that you have contact center costs measurements in place. If you are not actively tracking your costs and trends, it is impossible to know whether any of your change efforts have been successful. Unless you are an Excel power-user, enlist the help of a business analyst who can help you gather, filter and graph data for trend analysis.

Differentiator Series, Part 1: Balancing the Contact Center Brain
Like people, contact centers deal with two sides of a brain that will often lead to conflicting conclusions. The right brain is the creative, people-oriented side. This is the more emotional side, placing value first and foremost on the people side of the equation. Faced with a problem like high abandoned rates, the right side of the brain will lean on a solution that “fires up the troops,” encouraging them to work harder and more efficiently in order to answer more calls.

Workforce Management in the Omnichannel Age
The contact center credo is simple: When somebody calls, somebody should answer. As such, ensuring that a sufficient pool of agents is available to competently handle incoming queries at any given time is key to mission success. Too few and customer experience suffers, resulting in both frustrated customers and overwhelmed staff. Too many and operational efficiency suffers, resulting in both excessive expenditures and underutilized expertise.

Simplifying Remote Access
The need for remote access to core contact center infrastructure continues to grow. Whether implementing a home agent program, accommodating “on the go” leaders, establishing connectivity to outsourcers, ensuring business continuity, or tying into branches and retail outlets, businesses need effective communication between the contact center and a variety of locations.

5 Elements of a Successful Virtual Training Model
Education expert Bernard Bull once said, “In order to create an engaging learning experience, the role of the instructor is optional, but the role of the learner is essential.” A massive increase in online education over the past decade has revealed the truth of this observation. According to, the learning management system or LMS market—producing software for the administration, documentation, tracking, reporting and delivery of e-learning—is expected to grow from $2.55 billion in 2013 to $7 billion in 2018.