Increase Back-Office Capacity by 10% to +20%

Process More Work at a Lower Cost

Capacity Planning – What Is It?

Capacity planning is the process of forecasting demand to determine how many resources, with what skills, you will need to meet demand and process the work.

What do we mean by resources?
Well in customer service operations, “resources” have historically been your employees. However, recently “bots” that can process tasks and, in some cases, a full process have been introduced. Intelligent Virtual Assistants or chatbots give customers the ability to self-serve and execute many tasks on their own, decreasing the need for human intervention. Capacity plans need to factor in bots as available resources.

What do we mean by demand?
In customer service, demand refers to all the inquiries and service requests made by your customers and prospects, as well as the back-end processing of those requests. At one time, demand was easily measured by your ACD, which captured customer calls. Today, it’s not so easy. There are many different channels and modalities customers and prospects use to interact with your company. Understanding your end-to-end processing capacity needs means you also have to capture data from email, chat, and disparate business process management systems (BPM), workflow CRM, and legacy systems in your back-office operations.

How Does Capacity Planning Work?

To build a capacity planning model, you first need to forecast your demand. This includes all the tasks that need to be performed and the handle time to complete those tasks.

For true accuracy, you should include time spent on activities outside of customer support and production work, such as project, meetings, training, enrichment activities, as well as the need to have coverage for lunches, breaks, absences, and vacation. Remember…people are not robots. Human skills vary and disruptions happen, so you need to apply a utilization and proficiency factor.

The demand forecast and capacity plan will identify:

  • The average total FTE needed by work type/skill to complete work.
  • The intraday hours needed by work type/skill to complete the work.
  • Where there is over or understaffing.
  • The roles and skills needed for future hiring plans.
  • Where there are opportunities to shift or share resources across functions.

How is Capacity Planning in Back-Office Operations Different?

Workforce planners for customer service have typically focused on the contact center. Recently, organizations have been merging their back-office processing functions into their customer service operations. In these instances, you need to build capacity plans that span both groups.

However, capacity planning in the back-office is different than in the contact center for many reasons. Here are a few of the key differences:

  • Complex processes: Back-office work is often complex, with multiple steps that require different teams to execute different tasks.
  • Siloed systems. Different teams often have different legacy processing and workflow systems with severe integration limitations. Organizations are challenged to capture all the work items and data needed to create accurate capacity plans.
  • Backlog: Work has extended service level agreements (SLAs) that can span days or weeks, creating a backlog of carryover work that needs to be factored into demand forecasts.
  • Exception work: A lot of the work in the back-office that require human touch are exceptions, which increase the variability of the work, making it difficult to account for handle times, which impact the accuracy of your capacity plans.

What Can Improved Capacity Planning Do for You?

With Verint Workforce Management for Back-Office Operations solutions, a growing number of Fortune 500 companies have been able to:

  • Capture activity data directly from the desktop
  • Translate this data into work types, volumes, arrival patterns, and handle times
  • Generate accurate demand forecast capacity plans that meet your cost and service goals
  • Conduct what-if scenarios showing the impact of changes to volumes, resources, and technology on capacity
  • Understand current and future resource needs, informing hiring plans on the number and types of skills needed to meet SLAs.

UK Energy Provider

A leading UK energy company saw a compelling connection between back-office operations and customer experience. When they launched a customer transformation program, a key area of focus was improving back-office workflows. They wanted to give all levels of management real-time data to better monitor and improve back-office productivity.

With Verint Operations Manager, they created comprehensive demand forecasts and built an accurate capacity model that enabled them to:

  • Identify spare, short-term capacity across business functions
  • Quantify the volume of work
  • Gain real-time visibility into outstanding work
  • Clear backlogs and meet SLAs.

The energy company’s target was to increase operational capacity by 20 percent while maintaining the same workloads and resources. The actual benefit realized was a 30 percent improvement in capacity and productivity, while also reducing overtime and speeding turnaround times.

Learn more

RSA General Insurer

RSA, one of the world’s oldest general insurers, is on a transformation journey, with ambition to deliver ‘best-in-class’ performance in all markets it serves. The Commercial Risk Solutions (CRS) group of RSA has more than 1,000 insurance brokers and services 12,000 customers. CRS was being over-run with complexity and unnecessary costs. It needed a way to capture end-to-end processes and identify opportunities to streamline and improve productivity and capacity.

With Verint Operations Manager, RSA gained complete insight into process inefficiencies, volumes, skills, operational capacity, and demand by the second. They used this unrivalled insight to build effective capacity plans, improve performance, and balance workloads. RSA streamlined and sped up end-to-end processing, resulting in a:

  • 20 percent lift in capacity
  • 40 percent reduction in backlogs
  • Opportunity for an additional 29 percent capacity gain identified through sustainability and continuous improvement plans.
Hear RSA Share Their Story

Private Medical Insurance Provider

The member services and claims group of a Private Medical Insurance Provider was struggling with a very complex, varied work environment. Employees in these functions handle both customer calls and back-end processing, making it difficult to understand who was working on what, when, and for how long.

The insurer wanted real-time reporting and the ability to capture all work and back-office activity into a single dashboard so they could manage the workload, plan resources to align with demand and reduce staffing costs by 20%.

With Verint Operations Manager, the insurer created more accurate capacity plans, reduced shrinkage and downtime, sped turnaround times while reducing errors. Specifically, the insurer:

  • Captured 16% in capacity savings
  • Identified an additional 20% capacity opportunity
  • Right-sized their organization for future growth.

Guardian Life

The Guardian Life Insurance Company’s customer service operations support 26 million clients and 24 different business units. Guardian sought to automate its capacity planning capabilities for the over 2,000 employees in their back-office functions. They extended their deployment of Verint Workforce Management (WFM) beyond the contact center to departments that handle preparing a quote for sale, new business and case installation processing.

Interestingly, they found that WFM alone was not enough. They needed a way to understand how back-office employees were spending their time to accurately forecast work volumes and schedule resources. They added Verint Desktop and Process Analytics (DPA) to their implementation. With WFM and DPA, Guardian was able to:

  • Increase productivity and operational capacity by 20%.
  • Reduce shrinkage from 30% to as low as 13%.
  • Decrease overall staffing requirements by 8% and overtime by 30%.
  • Lower contact center call volume by 20%.
Hear the Guardian Life Story

Digital Financial Services Company

The auto financing group of a leading digital financial services firm, with a customer base comprised largely of car dealerships, realized that differentiating themselves from the crowd required them to cost effectively deliver faster, more responsive service.

The first step was to baseline processes and how employees were spending their time, but management lacked the necessary visibility into day-to-day operations.

“We didn’t have the measurable data we needed,” says the director of workforce management and capacity planning leader at the digital financial services company. “As a result, it was difficult for us to understand exactly how front-line employees and managers were spending their time.”

The digital financial services company deployed Verint Operations Visualizer within its auto financing loss mitigation group. The group includes approximately 400 contact center agents and 350 processing specialists. Operations Visualizer gave employees and managers real-time insights that helped focus employees on achieving performance standards to reach their productivity goals.

The loss mitigation group was able to:

  • Improve employee productivity by 13%.
  • Decrease idle time by 10%.
  • Decrease quarterly, year-of-year inventory numbers by 25% to 60% despite a 3% to 5% increase in volumes.
Check Out the Digital Financial Services Success Story

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