How much flexibility do you require?

The big question from this year is: “Do you understand how much flexibility you require?”  At each event, regardless of topic, it seems that this question keeps cropping up and the more we discuss we more we realise how important it is to know this.

It was great to see so many inspirational stories demonstrating the flexibility tool kit in action amongst this year’s innovation award finalists with examples from Sensee, Direct Line Group, Carnival UK and NHS Direct.

The Innovation award for Service Virtualisation was presented to Sensee whose outsourced homeworking model has raised the bar on performance and cut client’s costs by 10%-14%.  They have delivered full FSA/PCI compliance and created a high performing virtual operation that has a real team spirit and outperforms clients on all behavioural quality scores by an average of 16%. 

Dispelling the myths around homeworking with inbound and outbound activity, mix of full and part-time staff and significantly full FSA/PCA compliance.  The flexibility offered to staff has resulted in low absenteeism at just 2.63% and attrition at just 22%.  In addition shift adherence is at 95.5%.  “Agents work from home because of the flexibility it offers them; in many cases they wouldn’t be able to work otherwise.”  Interestingly of the 300 homeworkers the average is 40, over 75% are part-time with over 85% female and 17% with some form of disability.

Read the full case study online for more ideas or to read the site visit update click here.

Direct Line Group introduced “Shift Choice” which offers lifestyle options to their people whilst significantly reducing operational costs.  Increasing the number of calls handled with an improved schedule fit 90% of people now have at least 2.5 hours flex on start and finish times whilst part-time hours have been realigned.  Vitally, flexibility is future-proofed by having an annual preference window.

Read the full case study online for more ideas or to read the site visit update click here.

Carnival UK have made full use of the flexibility toolkit to create flexible resourcing to manage seasonal peaks and troughs and resource evening and weekend shifts.  Critically, flexibility works because of a wider focus on communication and development that generates the inner commitment that causes people to respond positively to requests for flexibility.  Carnival have demonstrated how to introduce a variety of flexibility options with annualised hours, homeworking and second jobs.

Read the full case study online for more ideas or to read the site visit update click here.

NHS Direct have shown how to overcome a legacy of fixed shift patterns to create a fully flexible resourcing model.  Key to their success was working in partnership with staff, unions and business stakeholders.  Their results include lowering the percentage of advisors on restricted shifts down from 48% to 2%.  This in-turn has led to a 97% schedule fit score.

Read the full case study online for more ideas or to read the site visit update click here.

Phil Anderson,
Contact Centre Specialist,
Professional Planning Forum
This article on Scheduling & Flexibility forms part of a Resourcing Planning Top Tips article produced by the Professional Planning Forum. If you would like to receive this regularly please sign up hereprint

Take a look at these articles, videos and links
See the latest articles on Planning for People
See the latest articles on Scheduling


(c) Professional Planning Forum 2000-2019
This site uses cookies to help deliver an engaging user experience.
To learn more about what cookies are and how to manage them visit