I’m often asked the question, “I already have reporting. Why would I get a performance management tool as well?” and at first glance, I can understand the sentiment. But then I think about the automatic power windows in my car. Before I had power windows, I could roll down my windows manually, but it took extra effort. I also had less flexibility – if my dog wanted his head out the back window, I couldn’t do it while I was driving, making him wait. Frustrating for us both!
Similarly, while reporting and dashboards provide a plethora of information, and you can eventually get the insights and data you need, it might take manual exporting, data manipulation and analysis to get there. Additionally, the manual data manipulation process delays the delivery of insights and information up and down the organization. So, like my dog, your leadership team and your front-line employees will both need to wait for that performance insight!
Automate your analysis process
When I worked in a contact center, there was a complicated projections report that we presented to the leadership team every Monday morning. The expected information could only be obtained by exporting a massive file into Excel, running a multi-step macro, posting to a TeamSite, and then sending an email highlight to the relevant leaders. This meant that every Monday morning, I had to come in early and run the report so that it would be waiting in inboxes by 9 am. I had all the right data points from reporting, but the analysis was clunky and manual. My weekly battle with this report typically took me 1.5 hours, which over the course of a year amounts to almost two full 40-hour work weeks! Imagine all the other things I could have accomplished in that time!
Additionally, for quite some time, I was the only person who knew how to run and apply the macro, which caused challenges if I was sick or went on vacation. Once we documented the process, we could train someone else to run it in my absence. But then – the macro broke! And the one guy who built the complicated macro had left the company, and nobody in any department could figure out how to fix or recreate it. Let me tell you - for the weeks it took to get the projections again, leadership was not happy, and we were hindered in our ability to make smart decisions.
This experience might sound crazy, but there many contact center managers reading this and nodding their heads because they’ve been there! According to a 2017 ICMI research study, 47% of surveyed organizations listed “consolidating reports” as one of the top challenges with performance management processes.
Looking back now, I laugh, because all these problems could have been avoided with a performance management platform. A performance management platform can automate that entire process and have that update in leadership’s inboxes as often as they need without any human intervention. Just create the report or dashboard one time and set up a subscription for it to run and email to leadership at any frequency desired.
Calculations take your data to the next level
An effective performance management platform empowers you to activate and take your data to the next level. For example, your ACD provides you the average calls handled per agent per month, average handle time, and days worked per month – three data points needed to calculate an agent utilization metric. However, without the ability to create a formula in the platform, someone will have to manually calculate agent utilization via Excel. That’s where a performance management platform steps in, allowing you to create the custom formulas and calculations you need without having to export data and manually calculate or run a macro. Additionally, once created, these metrics can be viewed in near real-time and for the time interval you need – allowing you to slice and dice your data with the click of a button.
Performance Management can do SO much more…
These are two important facets of performance management – but we’ve barely scratched the surface. A performance management platform also provides data transparency for all levels of the organization, provides holistic view through data aggregation from disparate data sources, engages and retains employees through gamification, coaching and feedback mechanisms, and SO much more. Thus, when someone asks, “Do I need a performance management solution if I already have reporting?” the answer is YES!