Human Automation – What’s new?


It’s time to discard the minutiae and start focusing on the future according to Dave Hoekstra. In his latest blog Dave explains that while human automation might be new to some, to others technology has been automating processes for many years.

Over the last few months, the Teleopti/Calabrio team has been hard at work releasing new features to help contact centers manage resources more easily. New capabilities in Teleopti WFM like Overtime Manager, Grant, Insights, and Self-Scheduling introduce some awesome potential for users to really tap into the power of what a world-class WFM system can do for their contact center.

These new capabilities are a result of a new mindset that our development teams have embraced called Human Automation. Human Automation is the idea that a piece of software can replicate the same decision-making process as a human being without that human needing to be there. It is not a new idea. Cavemen used to carry rocks from one place to another until someone invented the wheel. Riverboat captains rejoiced at the creation of the steam engine, making it possible to go upriver. Humans used to (gasp) hand-schedule resources to work in their contact centers (some of you are still doing this)!

With the advent of software to process complicated and repetitive tasks, humans faced a new challenge. This software does a great job, but I am always having to tell it what to do. Click here, look at this, type this in, wash, rinse repeat. With Human Automation, software developers (like Calabrio has in Minneapolis, Stockholm, Strängnäs, Gävle and Jönköping) can utilize new technologies to automate the processes that we humans have had to do, over and over, for years!

Eat, Sleep & Repeat

One of the biggest problems that humans have compared to computers, is that we have to sleep. We have to eat. We get sick, and we like to spend time with our families and friends. Computers don’t need to do that, so how can we show the computer how to perform the same tasks we would, sitting in front of our laptop? The answer is Human Automation.

The newest feature of Teleopti WFM is Self-Scheduling, and it is a perfect example of Human Automation. When a contact center agent wanted to move their lunch, the process was always the same.

  1. Email the Planner
  2. Wait and Hope for them to check their email
  3.     a. Maybe it will happen
        b. Maybe it won’t

  4. Wait some more
  5. Planner finally checks the email
  6. Planner checks staffing requirements
  7. Planner changes schedule
  8. Planner emails back to approve change
  9. Agent breathes sigh of relief

Self-Scheduling removes the wait

Why do we need that whole middle step? We have the staffing information, we know what to look at…so let’s just skip that whole step. That is exactly what Self-Scheduling does. It removes the human from the equation and allows the agent to get instant feedback on whether the move is possible. The agent is back to work quickly, and the planner can focus on bigger picture items with their time.

More productive planners

WFM planners understand this struggle all too well. A vast majority of their time is spent managing data. Updating schedules, planning meetings, entering exceptions, tweaking forecasts, watching the RTA feed….these are all tasks that quickly can eat up an entire day. By introducing Human Automation into the contact center, planners can now spend their time on capacity planning, cost management, and work items that contribute much more heavily to the overall health of the contact center.

Dave Hoekstra is a Teleopti WFM Evangelist


About Teleopti

Teleopti, a Calabrio company, helps organizations empower their employees to provide outstanding customer service through our cloud-first workforce management (WFM) software. We are a global team of innovators and experts focusing 100% on WFM, enabling companies with user-friendly automation and optimization of omnichannel forecasting, scheduling, and people management. Teleopti WFM supports companies’ profitability by elevating operational efficiency, employee engagement, and customer experience. Since the start of 1992 we have grown our customer community to 100 countries, collaborating with partners worldwide, and today Teleopti WFM plans and empowers over 500,000 employees. For more information, visit Teleopti

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