Powering up morale in Police Control Rooms with Workforce Management - Business Systems UK Ltd - ContactCenterWorld.com Blog
In early 2015 we started the conversation on how Workforce Management can support, automate and optimise workforce and associated business processes within the Police control rooms.
Our article ‘3 Ways Workforce Management can Improve Policing Efficiency’ touched on how scheduling, forecasting and real time adherence can help the police force improve quality of service by increasing both resource efficiency and availability whilst reducing unnecessary expenditures.
Following conversations with those in charge of ensuring control rooms operate at their best, another important factor was highlighted. On top of following government guidelines, public expectations, high demands from their own and surrounding forces, and the ultimate pressure of maintaining public safety, planners are also faced with the important challenge of maintaining morale and development of their staff.
With a general consensus based on the importance of nurturing the individual in order to achieve as a whole, we highlight how workforce management can help improve staff engagement and increase moral with the aim of delivering high levels of service to those in need.
Self-service provides staff with the ability to manage their own hours, including holidays and shifts, in line with established police force requirements, consequently allowing for a healthy work/life balance. Self-service gives employee control and flexibility, two fundamental motivators that are highly appreciated by most.
- Preference scheduling: Where employees can state their preferred days and times to work as well as their preference for additional activities, such as lunch, breaks and training.
- Availability: Staff can enter what days and/or hours they are able to work and the WFM Tools can make use of those offers as and when required by the force.
- Shift swaps: Employees are able to swap their shifts with other employees. In addition, WFM now also offers next generation functionality in the form of a shift trade board, whereby control room staff can post a shift available for trade and set criteria for what they are looking for in return. The WFM system takes in to consideration managerial pre-established requirements and automates the shift trade process minimising team leader intervention, all whilst maintaining staffing level requirements in order to meet service level demands.
- Absence requests: Staff can enter absence requests through their WFM Tool. Their request is reviewed against pre-established absence management rules with an automated response possible for team members. As well as being accepted or denied a team members request can also be placed on a waiting list for team leader acceptance.
Self-service does not just benefit the employee; it can make a big difference for the organisation as a whole:
- Improved work-life balance leading to better employee performance and focus
- Encourages and fosters a team environment
- Morale is improved helping reduce attrition rates
- Staff deployment is optimised and overtime costs reduced
- Automation reduces supervisory and admin work, reducing overall costs and allowing managers to focus on more important factors
Workforce Management Training
As a final note, control room supervisors have found that adequate training on how to use the system is crucial to the success of WFM Implementations. One of the biggest issues that police forces have with WFM tools is that they are not always taught how to use the systems and therefore the tool does not get used to its maximum capacity. In some cases, they are not even made aware of the system’s full functionality. It is highly recommended that supervisors request appropriate and comprehensive training from their WFM provider during the implementation phase.
Publish Date: February 7, 2017 5:00 AM
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