Call Center Schedule Rotations: The Basics

Customer Engagement Team December 17, 2021

It takes both art and science to staff a call center. Next to hiring the right personnel, call center shift scheduling plays the key role in maximizing resources and making sure calls are handled in a courteous and efficient manner.

There may be some instances where an agent needs to work a specific shift on a particular day of the week, one week, and then the next week work, different shift on the same day. Call center schedule rotations should balance available staff against predicted call volumes. Data from call recording software and workforce management solutions should provide the answers necessary to improve this process of call center shift scheduling.

However, there are always variables with scheduling, from shift swaps and vacation seasons when more agents are in Hawaii instead of at their desk, to unanticipated call volume swings.

This is important stuff, but the time spent working on adjusting rotations and changing schedules is also time that is not being spent on other facets of the call center, such as improving service levels and achieving the company’s operational and fiscal goals. So optimizing call center shift timings needs to be done, but it needs to be done quickly.

The role of workforce management

The more a call center can rely on workforce management software to streamline rotation schedules, the more time that leaves for management to deal with other issues. Communication is the key, and call centers should choose a workforce optimization solution that includes forecasting data to help determine call center shift timings. This includes exception handling, as well as a wide range of scheduling metrics that make it easier for agents and management to adjust to changing situations in call volume. In addition, workforce management can track how well agents are functioning within the system, and where action may need to be taken. When agents are clear on what their hours will be, when they can swap shifts and take vacations, and have that information available quickly, it should result in a positive impact on job performance and morale. It should be equally easy for management to review schedule changes and determine their impact on productivity.

For more information about call center schedule rotations and exception handling please click here to watch a video.

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