Category Archives: Contact Center Operations

BLOG-SIKORSKI’S THINK ABOUTS: INTERIOR DESIGN OF YOUR CALL CENTER # 5

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Here is #5 of my Call Center Design series . . .

Climate – Common Issues to Avoid

  • No regard for SBS (Sick Building Syndrome)
  • Dirty filters
  • Closing air vents

Climate – Helpful Hints

  • 70-72 Degrees Fahrenheit
  • Keep HVAC systems on at night and weekends
  • Use outside air from the roof not from the bottom of an airshaft
  • PC with Monitor is the equivalent of 1.5 bodies

Lighting – Common Issues to Avoid

  • Glare
  • Solid plastic lens covers
  • White or black work surfaces
  • No alternate light control
  • No automatic shut off

Lighting – Helpful Hints

  • 35 foot candles
  • Indirect lighting
  • Clean monitor screens regularly
  • Teach staff how to use PC controls

Furniture – Common Issues to Avoid

  • Too trendy
  • Staff never asked for feedback
  • Too personalized
  • Staff not taught how to use
  • Poorly organized

Furniture – Helpful Hints

  • Should last 10 years
  • Standard components
  • Forget the gadgets
  • Manufacturer Mock-up
  • Chairs must have arms, be back and seat adjustable, well cushioned

This week’s discussion with your employees –What can we do to make our office more comfortable?

This is the last of my Call Center Design series and I do hope you have taken away some “Think Abouts” for your next redesign.

Thank you for reading and sharing!

Warmest regards,

Laura Sikorski – Independent Call Center Consultant

Website

lsikorski@laurasikorski.com

WebTV Show Video Archives  http://thedailyblu.com/video/video/search?q=sikorski%27s+think+abouts

BLOG-SIKORSKI’S THINK ABOUTS: INTERIOR DESIGN OF YOUR CALL CENTER # 4

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Here is #4 of my Call Center Design series . . .

Layout – Common Issues to Avoid

  • Insufficient training space, lounge space and conference rooms
  • No
    • Reference library
    • Counseling/Project/Quiet rooms
    • Interaction status monitors/reader boards
  • Uncoordinated color schemes
  • Wrong traffic patterns
    • Lounge
    • Bathrooms
    • Time Clocks
    • Storage Area
    • HR Area
    • Training Area

Layout – Helpful Hints

  • 30->45 square feet per agent
  • Functions of the agent workflow is the core of the design
  • Interview your staff

Acoustics – Common Issues To Avoid

  • No panels or they are too high/too low
  • Painted walls
  • Solid plastic lens covers
  • Painted ceiling tiles
  • No trees or plants
  • Pictures with glass

Acoustics – Helpful Hints

  • Install white/pink noise
  • Ceiling tile Noise Reduction Coefficient
    • .9 Open Space
    • .5 Closed Office
  • Ceiling Height minimum 9’

Next blog will be about Climate, Lighting and Furniture.

This week’s discussion with your employees –What do you like best/least about our office design?

Thank you for reading and sharing!

Warmest regards,

Laura Sikorski – Independent Call Center Consultant

Website

lsikorski@laurasikorski.com

WebTV Show Video Archives  http://thedailyblu.com/video/video/search?q=sikorski%27s+think+abouts

BLOG-SIKORSKI’S THINK ABOUTS: INTERIOR DESIGN OF YOUR CALL CENTER # 3

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Here is #3 of my Call Center Design series . . .

Operational Structure of the Center must be considered

  • Operation Goals of the Agents
  • Supervisor to Agent Ratio
  • Updating Reference Materials
  • Types/Amount of Meetings
  • Interaction Volume – Calls, Emails, Web Chats, etc.
  • Traffic Patterns

What are your Support Areas

  • Training
  • Employee Lounge
  • Reference Library
  • Time Clocks
  • Counseling Rooms
  • Sick Room
  • Copying Facilities
  • Recreation Needs
  • Technology Needs

Workstation “Think Abouts”

  • Single “Cubby” vs. Pods
  • Ample Room/Easy Access
  • Amount of Personalization
  • Wires
  • Chair
  • Fire Retardant
  • Electrical
  • Rearrangement

Next week I will blog about Office Ergonomics – Layout and Acoustics

This week’s discussion with your employees – “what’s right/wrong about their individual work space.

Thank you for reading and sharing!

Warmest regards,

Laura Sikorski – Independent Call Center Consultant

Website

lsikorski@laurasikorski.com

WebTV Show Video Archives  http://thedailyblu.com/video/video/search?q=sikorski%27s+think+abouts

BLOG-SIKORSKI’S THINK ABOUTS: Interior Design of Your Call Center # 2

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Here is #2 of my Call Center design series . . .

Interior Design Should

  • Accommodate Change
  • Encourage Growth
  • Give your staff the ability to control the use of their own environment

Design Should Incorporate

  • Traditional Offices
  • Building Functions
  • Center Functions
  • Agent Area as the CORE of the Design Process

Design Development

  • Select the Architect
  • Physical Location (square footage)
  • Organization
  • Structure of the Center
  • Support Areas
  • Workstation

Organization

  • Departments
  • Job Descriptions
  • Tasks
  • Responsibilities
  • Flow of Work
  • Flow of Paper
  • Communications
  • Office Standards
  • Efficiency of Existing Adjacencies

Next week I will blog about Structure, Support Areas and Workstation Design

This week’s discussion with your employees – discuss the “Flow of Work” in your center.

Thank you for reading and sharing!

Warmest regards,

Laura Sikorski – Independent Call Center Consultant

Website

lsikorski@laurasikorski.com

WebTV Show Video Archives  http://thedailyblu.com/video/video/search?q=sikorski%27s+think+abouts

BLOG-SIKORSKI’S THINK ABOUTS: Interior Design of Your Call Center

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Throughout my career I have designed the physical interior layout of call centers from 5 to 500 agent seats across the globe.  This next blog series will step you through the basic process of designing your center for efficiency and productivity.

What Makes a Center Well Designed?

  • The least dollars for the most space
  • The most bodies in the least amount of space
  • The most space in the least amount of time
  • The most durability for the least amount of money

The Answer

  • Never losing site of your makeover goals
  • Safety and welfare of all your employees
  • Increased efficiency
  • Encouragement of productivity
  • Comfort for your entire staff

You Will Need to Compromise With

  • Management
    • Executive
    • Administrative
    • Financial
    • Facilities
    • Purchasing
  • Architects
  • Engineers
  • Contractors
  • Manufacturers

Benefits of Design

  • Reduced stress
  • Higher motivation
  • Increased company morale
  • Reduced absenteeism
  • Reduced errors
  • Enhanced supervision
  • Happy employees means HAPPY CUSTOMERS!

Staff Problems

  • Air Quality/Ventilation
  • Cramped workspace
  • New technology
  • Paper pollution
  • Wiring in the way
  • Backaches/Headaches
  • Glare

Staff Needs

  • Access to job tools
  • Access to other areas
  • Ability to control the use of their own workspace
  • Comfort

This week’s question for your employees – What problems do you see with the way our office or your workspace is designed?

Thank you for reading and sharing!

Warmest regards,

Laura Sikorski – Independent Call Center Consultant

Website

lsikorski@laurasikorski.com

WebTV Show Video Archives  http://thedailyblu.com/video/video/search?q=sikorski%27s+think+abouts

BLOG – SIKORSKI’S THINK ABOUTS – QA PROGRAM: SPEECH ANALYTICS

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For me . . . the most exciting evolution in Call/Contact Center technology is speech analytics and here is why:

  • Fine tuned to the point where if a certain word is used the interaction is recorded
  • Identifies the emotion in the voice
  • Converts voice to text
  • Searchable data
  • Sends real-time alerts to supervisors
  • Monitors the entire customer experience
  • Unlocks the information buried in customer conversation

Applying speech analytics enables you to focus on key issues that matter most.

You can drill down to the root causes of customer and agent issues and concentrate on problems that impact company wide performance.

Speech analytics is a powerful tool and should  be used to place customer needs front and center:

  • Improve processes
  • Empower agents
  • Identify
    •   Service issues
    •   Trends
    •   Product needs
    •   Product problems
    •   Strategies

This week’s question for your employees – Explain speech analytics, ask how they feel about this technology and how would it benefit your company?

Thank you for reading and sharing!

Warmest regards,

Laura Sikorski – Independent Call Center Consultant

Website

lsikorski@laurasikorski.com

WebTV Show Video Archives  http://thedailyblu.com/video/video/search?q=sikorski%27s+think+abouts

BLOG – SIKORSKI’S THINK ABOUTS – QA PROGRAM: FORMAL MONITORING POLICY

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A formal policy should be in place and detail:

  • Performance Guidelines
  • Tools and Measurements
  • How reviews and scores will be communicated

Here are the components:

  • Performance Evaluation Policy Form
  • Performance Standards (Calibration) Chart
  • Quality Monitoring Form
  • Performance Evaluation Form

If you would like samples of these forms, please send me your email and I will gladly share . . .

Trends in Quality Assurance:

  • Less punishment more training
  • Cheaper data storage
  • Helps the rest of the business
  • Integration with other systems
  • Customer surveys and be sure to share with your staff
  • Screen capture with recording
  • Speech analytics

This week’s question for your Supervisors – Do we have sufficient staff reviewing employee performance?  If not, what is your plan to prove why you need more?

Thank you for reading and sharing!

Warmest regards,

Laura Sikorski – Independent Call Center Consultant

Website

lsikorski@laurasikorski.com

WebTV Show Video Archives  http://thedailyblu.com/video/video/search?q=sikorski%27s+think+abouts