On June 27, 2013 Aspect Software announced the availability of Aspect Workforce Mobile. This new software solution provides contact center agents mobile access to Aspect’s workforce management solution. This makes it possible for agents to view and request changes to their own schedule using their smartphone or tablet computer. Agents can also view their own performance metrics and productivity statistics on their mobile device from any location. For those agents who are motivated to get ahead and/or are working toward a career in customer care, this capability will prove to be an invaluable asset.
For supervisors, Aspect Workforce Mobile offers the ability to look at workforce schedules and make or approve changes as necessary from their mobile device. Supervisors with a mobile device can also view intraday statistics, forecasts, performance metrics and nearly every statistic provided by Aspect’s workforce management software.
What I found so extraordinary about this announcement is how stunningly practical this Aspect solution is. With the proliferation of mobile devices in the U.S. today, which currently stands at approximately 1.1 mobile communications devices for every man, woman and child in the U.S. and all of its territories, it only makes sense to extend the usage of these communications tools to those in the customer service profession. The next generation of workers has been raised with a mobile phone in hand and it is typically this generation’s resource of choice for nearly all information. Contact center executives should welcome the ability to access work information on a personal mobile device with open arms.
I was particularly interested in the proactive broadcast capabilities of Aspect Workforce Mobile. Any piece of information that can impact the workforce schedule in any way can be quickly automated and broadcast to a mobile device. For example, if a contact center finds itself with overtime hours available this opportunity can be promptly broadcast to its agent population. Agents can log on to the workforce management system with their mobile device and quickly check their schedule against the available overtime hours. Again using a mobile device from any location, agents can apply for the overtime hours as appropriate.
Credit for Aspect Workforce Mobile belongs to an Aspect customer and Aspect’s Innovation Group, which developed the solution at the request of this specific customer. The customer has been using Aspect Workforce Mobile with its nearly 3,000 agents and estimates it will save about $500,000 per year. I’d call that an acceptable return on investment (ROI).
As previously mentioned, this is a practical solution that I expect to find immediate and widespread acceptance in the worldwide contact center industry. Beyond that, I’m happy to see that there are still contact center solutions providers that are creating solutions that directly address and impact the actual, existing productivity challenges faced by contact centers today. With so many vendors that seem to have their head in the cloud, so to speak, it is reassuring to see that Aspect still has its feet firmly planted on the ground.