Looking to improve operating margins in your call center? Then take a look at your staffing strategy. From the assembly line to the executive office, effective staffing is essential to maximizing profitability.
Below are 5 practical strategies for using staffing to reduce call center overhead, manage call center operating costs, and improve organizational performance.
- Convert fixed costs to variable: If your call center is like most, labor is the biggest line item on your P&L. To minimize that expense, implement a planned staffing model. Reduce core staff to levels necessary to maintain normal operations. Then partner with qualified temporary staffing vendors to supplement your staff to meet peak production demands as needed. This strategy is particularly effective for call centers that have seasonal peaks and valleys in staffing demand.
- Limit benefits expense & eliminate unemployment claims: On average, benefits cost 20% – 25% in excess of payroll expenses. Where appropriate, use temporary and payrolled employees (employees who are paid through a staffing firm or professional employment service) to eliminate benefits expenses.
- Shift the administrative burden: When you use temporary staff instead of direct hires, all costs associated with processing and administering payroll and benefits are transferred from your company to the staffing firm.
- Reduce the risks of hiring mistakes: A bad hire can cost you between two and seven times the employee’s annual salary. Utilizing a staffing firm that focuses on a specific industry and has industry specific testing and screening in place can help reduce hiring mistakes. To further reduce your hiring risk, you can also take advantage of your staffing partner’s temp-to-hire services – particularly effective in the call center environment as the temp to hire model can act as motivation for retention thus reducing attrition.
- Cut costs by hiring: Capacity constraints are a significant source of cost. Constraints can have a direct impact on call center operations – from CSRs that bill by the minute to Collections Reps that create revenue, having seats empty can kill revenues. To eliminate the bottlenecks, consider adding temporary or full-time staff.