Canada’s economy has arguably outperformed that of its far-larger neighbor to the south thanks to a strong resource sector and financial prudence. Canadians are risk-adverse, which means the country has not grown as it might have been otherwise, and its economy is dominated by foreign-owned firms, but it has not fallen to the same extent as the U.S.
Canadian call centers have reason to rev up operations into a higher gear. The call center sector must continually improve performance; for them, too, the specter of offshoring looms with Asia-Pacific for English-language- and Africa for French-speaking- programs.
A critical factor in driving contact center performance is optimally balancing costs, speed and customer satisfaction. The responsibility often rests in the hands of specialists, workforce management planners and analysts, who create optimal agent work schedules. All three outcomes, financial success, operational precision, and customer satisfaction, can be achieved or scuttled at the hands of these critical often unappreciated data crunching experts.
Precise or imprecise staff schedules, and the workforce planners that create them, are critical to both the quality and financial viability of a contact center. Under-scheduling call center agents, even by a small amount, may increase customer wait times exponentially, with potentially catastrophic effects on customer satisfaction. Over-staffing, on the other hand, results in wasted compensation dollars as highly-skilled agents wait idly for the next caller. The larger the center, the more critical the need for skilled analysts who can wield the mathematics and science that underlie the workforce management discipline.
For many years, workforce management training courses and professional certification programs were unavailable in Canada, but no longer. The Chicago-based RCCSP Professional Education Alliance forged its way into Toronto in 2010 and 2011 to provide much needed, lab-like, hands-on training developed and led by authorities of the workforce planning world.
RCCSP reports that a three-day Optimizing Workforce Management training course touring North American will make a stop at the Park Hyatt Toronto Hotel on July 11-13, 2012. Thereafter, the course continues on to Atlanta where it will co-locate at the Georgian Terrace Hotel on July 30-August 2 alongside RCCSP’s flagship Contact Center Management Boot Camp, a total-immersion training course and accelerated certification program.
The Workforce Management Optimization course, led by Michele Borboa, was developed by leading workforce management authority and Call Center School founder, Maggie Klenke. Already accredited as a prep course for The Call Center School’s Workforce Management Mastery Certificate, the Workforce Management Course also earned RCCSP accreditation in 2010, as a qualified prep course the Certified Workforce Management Professional (CWMP) certification exam. The CWMP has an additional field work project requirement.
Attendees of the rigorous hands-on program now prepare simultaneously for two out of three certifications available to call center workforce management professionals. The third industry-recognized certification, the Certified Workforce Planning Professional (CWPP) administered by the Society of Workforce Planning Profession (SWPP), is the most advanced of the three, with significant field experience requirements. Course instructor Borboa holds all three certifications.
Canadian call center workforce management professionals may register for the training through either The Call Center School or the RCCSP Professional Education Alliance. Those unable to attend the open-enrollment course may sign-up for a series of online instructor-led seminars, one 90-minute session per week, and qualify for The Call Center School’s Mastery Certificate in Workforce Management. Both the 3-day instructor-led program and the online series can be delivered privately to on-site audiences with as few as four participants.
An abbreviated 2-day Fundamentals of Workforce Management training course, addressing forecasting and scheduling, can also be attended in Toronto, July 11-12, 2012
RCCSP is the accreditation, examination and certification body for the call center industry's most comprehensive suite of professional certifications for individuals. Accredited training courses are offered year round by Alliance member call center training companies and consulting professionals. A complete schedule of North American training and certification courses for supervisors, managers, directors, operations engineers, workforce management professionals and six sigma designers can be found here.
Edited by Juliana Kenny