Quality customer experience doesn’t happen by chance. It demands product/service quality, optimized customer journey, and most importantly, excellent customer service. In any organization, the leading factor for the quality of the customer experience is the employee. These are the people who create the product, organize the process, and deliver the experience to the users. If you want to elevate CX in 2024, you need to build a customer-centric culture and properly manage your employees.
In other words, you need proper workforce management.
Why Workforce Management Matters
Primarily, workforce management is important because it keeps your employees happy and productive. It also keeps them working for your company – something that’s especially important nowadays.
Today’s employees have different priorities from before. They expect quality work conditions and jobs that offer excellent employee experience. According to a Glassdoor study, 56% of workers now rank a strong workplace culture higher than a bigger salary.
We live in a very competitive market where companies fight to attract – but also retain the best talent. This is the world of The Great Resignation, a time when people separate from their jobs in search of a better place to work.
Think of this as a domino effect. If your employee is unhappy, the chances of your customer being unhappy are high. An unhappy employee won’t treat your customers better than you treat them.
So, if you’re focusing on the CX, you can’t neglect the employee experience – and their work at your company. Creating an amazing customer experience relies mostly on the work of your employees.
That’s why workforce management matters.
Let’s create a common scenario for a customer that uses your business.
The customer needs to reach out to your contact center. They call or write in the chat, and the agent responds almost immediately. They are cheerful, professional, and rapid in solving the problem or answering the question.
The customer is happy.
Here is a scenario B. A poorly managed or unhappy employee will do the opposite in this phase of the customer journey. They won’t be happy, so they won’t be cheerful. They aren’t properly guided or managed, so they’ll struggle to find a solution fast.
The result? You’ve failed the customer at the first point of their journey.
After the call, a satisfied and quality employee will follow through and tackle the customer’s issue. A disgruntled employee will delay the process, make a mistake, and frustrate the customer.
Which is the better option?
If you want a good CX, you need well-managed employees. To get that, you need workforce management.
6 Workforce Management Tips that Elevate CX
Strategic management of human resources in a company is critical for effective work and consequently, a good customer experience. Here are the steps you can take to manage the workforce in a way that will elevate CX.
1. Streamline the Budgeting Process
Budgeting in companies is very burdensome, lengthy, and, in most companies, very manual. Office politics do not help the matter, so if you want to manage your workforce more efficiently today, you need to start with the money.
This can be streamlined very easily. If you want to make matters simpler, more accurate, and less stressful for your employees, you can learn more about budget tracking software. From budgeting automation to forecasting, tracking software can streamline the work at your company, reduce errors, and keep your workers within budget.
Here is what you can achieve with a budgeting tool:
- Forecast budgets across the organization
- Integrate budgeting with real-time reports
- Track and manage cash flow and operations with ease
- Inform employees of the budget and restrictions in real time
- Stay on track with your organization’s financial goals
- Enhance collaboration and transparency in financial planning
2. Implement AI voice generation
Your workforce can only achieve so much without help. In a busy period for your business, your employees will be tired, overwhelmed, and possibly unable to cater to every need of every customer.
Thankfully, artificial intelligence has made it possible for companies to automate and streamline just about every communication with the customer.
For instance, you can use AI voice generation to assist your workforce in handling customers and collecting their data. AI voice generation is useful for many reasons, including:
- Personalized product recommendations
Your employees won’t have to manually collect or analyze data such as customer purchase history or browsing behaviors. AI can analyze this information instantly and offer recommended products using AI-generated voice messages.
- Personalized greetings and messages
AI voice generation can create greetings for your customers based on past interaction data. Your employees can use AI to analyze data and understand the customer’s preferences such as language, style, and tone – and automate this to improve the CX.
- Customer feedback analysis
Gathering customer feedback has become a common practice at companies these days. It allows them to address customer concerns in an empathetic, personalized manner. With tools like AI voice generation, this can all be automated.
3. Monitor employee performance/ provide constructive feedback
Workforce management should be based on how the employee performs. That being said, if you want to help employees in offering quality customer experiences, you need to monitor their performance – and gather their feedback.
A workforce management team will monitor the quality of work, and the flow in the company throughout any given day.
Thankfully, there are many tools that can automate and organize this in reports. Based on how people perform in the company, you can offer them real-time feedback that will help them improve.
4. Forecast staffing needs
At any given moment, your organization should know what the customer expects and what they need. Before you set any realistic service goals, you need to know what your company’s staffing needs are.
Take, for instance, a call center. If you want to know how many employees you need to offer fast and quality responses to the customers, you need to have an understanding of the historical call volume, as well as the average time an employee needs to handle a query.
At any given time, your company needs to know how many people it manages – and how many people it needs. Workforce management is reliant on having the right number of people tackling customer requests.
If you don’t have a sufficient number of people in your workforce, your employees will be tired and frustrated, and so will your customers.
5. Utilize customer survey data
Who better to ask about the work of your employees than the people who deal with them directly – your customers? Part of workforce management is to use the data you gather from your customers to improve the work of your employees.
There are many ways to collect data from your customers and this includes surveys. There’s a survey you can send out to evaluate each stage of the customer journey. This will tell you what you need to improve when it comes to your employees’ work.
6. Optimize scheduling
Time is a delicate matter when you’re managing a workforce. You need to plan for everything including absenteeism, people leaving their jobs, peak hours, etc.
If you want your workforce to work without glitches – and without overworking – you need to transition to a more effective scheduling process.
Scheduling is much more efficient if you use technologies to keep track of everything. Good scheduling software can help you do the following:
- Display open shifts so employees can choose their preferred work hours
- Identify the peak hours and assign more employees during those periods
- Notify employees whenever a schedule changes
- Keep track of everyone’s work schedule
- Offer more flexible shift options to your workforce
- Remove the burden of working overtime
When your employees are burned out, they won’t perform at their best. If they can’t have frequent downtime i.e. breaks, this can also affect their work and with it, the customer experience.
If you want to reduce employee stress, you need to optimize your team’s schedule.
The Role of Workforce Management in Customer Experiences
Setting up your employees for success happens before they get a customer call or meet a client. These are the people who create the products and offer the services, and their performance is greatly reliant on the employee experience.
The employee doesn’t even have to meet the customer or directly interact with them to affect the CX. Their work will affect it in some way – good or bad.
Everything can affect employee performance: when they started to work, how many days they’ve had off in the year, how many breaks they took, and even who they work with.
If you want people to be happy and work at their best, you need to manage the workforce.
Workforce management empowers the employees and gives them the tools to do their jobs. A properly managed employee can deliver the required service because he is equipped with the resources, information, and training that allows him to do so.
Workforce management inspects their behaviors, improves the bad, and validates the good.
Finally, workforce management collects and analyzes powerful data that can optimize the employee lifecycle.
How have You Been Managing the Workforce?
In 2024, if you want to elevate customer experience, you need to have fierce workforce management. The link between employee and customer satisfaction is more visible now than ever. Implementing tools for budget tracking, AI voice generation, scheduling, and employee performance tracking, are just a few of the many options you can use to elevate CX.
Do you have any other tricks under your sleeve?
Jake Stainer With over 10 years of experience in the digital marketing and growth sector, Jake Stainer’s passion lies in helping SaaS brands leverage SEO as their primary revenue driver. He’s founded and led successful ventures, including Papora, an award-winning B2C language-learning subscription service with over 150,000 users, and co-founded Skale, a growth agency collaborating with top SaaS companies like Hubspot, Pitch, G2, and Perkbox. Some of the skills that he brings to the table are cohort analysis, marketing communications, social networking, and strategic business analytics.