BY BRUCE BELFIORE | September 9, 2019
I wrote previously about spending the budget you have left for this year, before it is taken away. This second blog focuses on budgeting for next year.
Budget season brings to mind the words from the Rolling Stones song.
“You can't always get what you want But if you try, sometimes, you might find you get what you need”
Highlight the words “if you try”, since getting the budget you “need” is not something that falls into the laps of most managers.
Let’s face it, the budget meeting is often the worst day of the year for contact center managers. They are, generally speaking, right-brained, people-oriented individuals, who are forced to share the same room with those left-brained bean counters from finance for a few hours. These are important hours that will determine the contact center’s funding fate for the next year.
My message is: You can do it - - and “get what you need” - - “if you try”. Wherever possible, use numbers to support your positions.
- Workforce Management software and simple Erlang calculators can be brought to bear in arguing for additional headcount to provide the appropriate level of service for your mission and your brand
- Call Center Benchmarking can show where you stand compared with your industry peers, and bring your superiors around to your point of view on needed improvements
- Showing how proper call center training of every level of your workforce has improved your metrics can help you secure more funding for the education side of your operation
- Carefully selected case studies from vendors that mirror your situation can indicate where new technology can improve your performance and provide a healthy Return on Investment (ROI) for your company. Calculate the ROI - - if you need help, reach out to someone in finance, or call us
- If you are with a company quoted on the stock market, then see if you can convert improved financial performance into Earnings per Share (EPS) calculations. If done properly, this is a huge advantage when arguing your case for new initiatives
Remember, customer contact is the front door of your enterprise. Whether you are a corporation, a government entity or a non-profit, you are the “face and the voice” that customers will associate with your products and your brand. You deserve adequate funding. Be sure to assemble the evidence and the arguments that will speed your budget requests through the approval process.
Best of luck! If you need assistance, please feel free to contact us.
Bruce Belfiore is Senior Research Executive and CEO of BenchmarkPortal, custodian of the world’s largest database of contact center metrics. He hosts the monthly online radio show "CallTalk" and is chancellor of The College of Call Center Excellence, which provides courses for call center professionals. He has consulted for many Fortune 1000 companies, helping them to improve the strategic value, efficiency and effectiveness of their customer contact operations. He is the author of the book Benchmarking At Its Best for Contact Centers and holds bachelor’s, MBA and JD degrees from Harvard University.