ST. LOUIS, MO (July 29, 2003) – Pipkins Inc. today announced the availability of its Real-Time Intra-Day Optimization Suite, an industry-first set of components designed to expedite and optimize current-day schedule adjustments in call centers. This enhancement to Pipkins’ Vantage Point workforce management software enables supervisors to respond to unexpected agent absences and other last-minute problems quickly, efficiently, and without interruption to normal activities while maintaining the best possible service levels.
The suite consists of a variety of tools for automating agent absence reporting, streamlining intra-day forecasting and personnel reassignment, and disseminating new intra-day schedules. These include:
- The industry’s only intra-day schedule re-optimization utility, which electronically modifies agents’ breaks, lunches and work assignments to reflect unexpected absences, meetings and/or call volumes.
- Touch-tone and Web-based exception reporting by call center agents that is instantly and automatically integrated into the daily schedule through Vantage Point’s optional IVR Scheduling Support and WAVE modules.
- Pop-up, email and/or online agent notification, including a unique add-on system that sends last-minute schedule changes or overtime requests to agents’ computer screens via pop-up messages; and
- Separate intra-day analysis and forecasting functions that enable supervisors to quickly review the current-day staffing situation, update the forecast, and recalculate the day’s staffing needs.
“Typically, last-minute staffing problems require call center supervisors to manually create, print and distribute new intra-day schedules, talk to agents individually to solicit overtime hours, and so on. This is inefficient, less accurate than electronic rescheduling, and causes unnecessary delays that can leave the center temporarily understaffed and also negatively affect the service level for the day,” said Joel Gilbert, Pipkins CIO.
“Our Real-Time Intra-Day Optimization Suite ensures that scheduling changes reflect the best use of human resources, and it allows these changes to be implemented quickly,” Gilbert said. “No other workforce management system on the market has this complete spectrum of capabilities.”
“On any given day in a call center, staffing problems come up that you can’t plan for. People call in sick, snowstorms make it impossible for agents to get to work, supervisors hold impromptu meetings, and so on,” said Jennifer Gaia, former workforce manager of customer service for Scholastic Inc. “Intra-day rescheduling is necessary on a regular basis, and the kinds of tools that Pipkins has developed can make the difference in continuing to service customers efficiently.”
About Vantage Point
Pipkins’ Vantage Point workforce management software forecasts workload and schedules staff in single or multi-site call centers using a proprietary optimization algorithm, advanced skill-based modeling, and exclusive historical trend analysis that fine-tunes call volume forecasts for special events such as mail drops.
Optional modules are available for real-time adherence monitoring, Web-based agent access, Web-based time and attendance, IVR scheduling support, and now pop-up agent notification of intra-day schedule adjustments. Vantage Point is also available through WorkforceScheduling.com, Pipkins’ Web-based subscription service.
Vantage Point integrates with leading ACDs, e-mail response systems and other multimedia queuing devices for data collection across multiple sites and time zones. It also provides a full complement of default and custom reports, with an open system design that allows managers to access call center data using any third party SQL reporting package.
About Pipkins Inc.
Pipkins Inc. (PIPKINS), founded in 1984, is the leading supplier of workforce management software and services to the call center industry. Its Vantage Point product enables managers to solve the complicated operational issues in today’s multi-faceted call center environment. PIPKINS’ systems forecast and schedule more than 100,000 agents in over 300 locations across all industries worldwide. The company is headquartered in St. Louis, Missouri. For more information, visit www.pipkins.com.