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IT Voice Interacts – Mr Vikas Wahee, Head of Solutions, BPM & ITES, Intellicus Technologies

IT Voice : Highlight the key features and capabilities of Flow WFM tool   

Wahee : FLOW WFM offers a comprehensive suite of features to address key challenges in workforce management. It breaks data silos by connecting disparate data sources, providing rich insights and supporting various systems. The platform’s AutoML forecasting capability infuses contact centers with data-driven forecasting, enabling businesses to select from a wide range of algorithms and improve forecast accuracy. Capacity planning is streamlined with the ability to balance costs with customer satisfaction, using what-if analysis to prepare for various scenarios and maximize revenue. The shift identification feature automates shift planning, minimizing scheduling leakages and irregularities while optimizing staffing schedules and lowering operational costs.  

By enabling employees to request their desired shifts and week offs through shift-bid, FLOW aids organizations in creating a satisfied workforce that in turn, leads to elevated customer satisfaction. Rostering and scheduling become efficient with intelligent skillset allocation, WFM analytics and real time performance dashboards empower users with customizable insights to drive data-driven decisions and performance improvement across all levels of the organization. 

IT Voice : Many BPOs emphasize the importance of employee satisfaction. How does your WFM tool support better employee scheduling and work-life balance?   

Wahee : In the contemporary landscape, workforce management adopts a comprehensive approach that integrates diverse HR methodologies and harnesses technology to optimize workforce planning, talent acquisition, development and retention. It takes into consideration a range of factors, including workforce demographics, skill prerequisites, employee engagement and organizational culture. The evolution of workforce management underscores the understanding that employees are not merely assets but rather fundamental contributors to an organization’s prosperity. 

FLOW WFM features a self-scheduling module that demonstrates a level of intelligence in grasping the needs of the business and its employees, offering a remarkable degree of flexibility. Traditionally, when an employee’s shift clashed with personal commitments, they would need to engage with the HR department or a manager, often resulting in less than satisfactory resolutions. However, with the self-scheduling module, employees have the ability to structure their schedules to cultivate a healthier and more efficient work-life balance. This flexibility empowers employees to harmonize their work responsibilities with personal commitments, fostering well-being, contentment and increased engagement. 

IT Voice : Real-time monitoring and reporting are crucial for BPO operations. How does your tool provide actionable insights and help in managing teams effectively?   

Wahee : Real-time queue management stands as one of the most robust and impactful use cases for FLOW WFM. This functionality goes beyond merely offering real-time updates; it also incorporates a sophisticated alert system that can be tailored to specific business needs and distributed to various users according to their roles. This real-time alert system is designed to streamline the workflow for team leaders and managers, freeing them from the need to constantly review data. Instead, they can direct their attention towards the alerts generated through outlier detection and focus on taking proactive measures in response to these alerts. 

By adopting this approach, FLOW WFM empowers team leaders and managers to maintain a comprehensive oversight of the critical areas that require attention, ultimately resulting in an enhanced customer experience. It eliminates the burden of manual data monitoring and highlights exceptions or unusual patterns automatically. These alerts can be configured to suit specific business types, ensuring that the right information reaches the right individuals at the right time. 

IT Voice : How do you envision the role of WFM tools evolving in the BPO industry in the coming years, and how does your company plan to stay at the forefront of these changes?   

Wahee : One of the most pressing challenges faced by modern contact centers is the need to accurately forecast customer demand and align staffing levels accordingly. Inaccurate predictions can lead to scenarios where contact centers are either understaffed or overstaffed, resulting in suboptimal employee utilization and operational inefficiencies. A modern WFM software like FLOW plays a pivotal role in optimizing scheduling and workload, which, in turn, helps reduce agent churn. A well-designed WFM solution should provide insights into the most efficient shift types, employee types and the number of shifts required to maintain optimal staffing and meet service level agreements.  

When the right number of agents with the appropriate skills are available at the right times, customer service is more efficient, leading to higher customer satisfaction and loyalty. Furthermore, when combined with real-time monitoring and reporting capabilities, contact center managers gain the ability to proactively manage team performance. They can make on-the-fly adjustments to schedules, mitigating excessive overtime costs which not only affect the bottom line, but also have a bearing on agent attrition rates, morale and overall job satisfaction.  

IT Voice : Can you share some real-world examples or case studies where BPOs have significantly benefited from implementing Flow?

Wahee : A leading BPM in India faced several challenges including data silos, manual data extraction and slow, inaccurate forecasting. FLOW allowed the BPM to consolidate data from various sources, providing a single source of truth and eliminating the need for manual data extraction and cleaning. This data integration improved the speed and accuracy of their forecasting by nearly 85%. With FLOW’s AutoML capabilities, the BPM could train the system using various data sets and run multiple iterations for more precise predictions. The time required for generating predictions reduced significantly, from weeks to minutes.

The BPM’s WFM team could now add their expertise to the AI/ML model’s output, which allowed for precise parameter adjustments by using human intelligence to the models. This helped in achieving service level agreements while eliminating the need for manual buffers. Additionally, FLOW optimized staffing by providing the right headcount and scheduling, reducing variances between actual and forecasted data. The BPO could design optimal shift plans thus enhancing productivity and cost savings. FLOW’s real-time and historical data analytics also provided a 360-degree view of business performance enabling them to monitor critical KPIs and dynamically adjust their operations.

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