It’s Time to Bid Farewell to Excel-based WFO

FROM THE FEBRUARY 2019 ISSUE

Challenges and Priorities Survey

Contact centers need performance management tools to manage their operations. Too often, the dominant “tool” is Excel. Unfortunately, when individuals export and manipulate data to produce (pretty) reports, recipients may not understand, embrace or accept the findings. Moreover, without well-defined processes for what to do with the information, the impact falls short of potential.

Centers that use performance management tools are more likely to drive meaningful, actionable results. The tools don’t just deliver reports; they drive processes and actions. They provide a means to track and hold people accountable—e.g., coaching sessions happened, goals were met (or not met), the rewards were delivered, or the additional coaching and training pursued. And they show how action translates into favorable indicators and trends that move in the right direction.

Here’s a quick comparison that highlights differences between the “DIY” approach with Excel and sophisticated WFO tools:

Your Call to Action

Don’t feel like the pursuit of better tools has to be a long-term, waiting-for-the-next-budget-cycle project. You can start doing some things now! Review what you have as a first step and think about how you can get more out of it. Many centers simply need to re-launch and re-train and establish new end-to-end processes as they do. Such efforts include weaning folks off Excel as they move from manual tasks to automation, leveraging the available tools.

Beyond using what you have, you can identify any gaps to fill as your next step. Keep in mind that tools are more valuable when integrated or part of a suite.