Staff Scheduling for Inbound Call Centers and Customer Contact Centers

AAAI Conferences

The staff scheduling problem is a critical problem in the call center (or more generally, customer contact center) industry. This paper describes Director, a staff scheduling system for contact centers. Director is a constraint-based system that uses AI search techniques to generate schedules that satisfy and optimize a wide range of constraints and service quality metrics. Director has been successfully deployed at over 800 contact centers, with significant measurable benefits, some of which are documented in case studies included in this paper.


Staff Scheduling for Inbound Call Centers and Customer Contact Centers

AI Magazine

The staff scheduling problem is a critical problem in the call center (or, more generally, customer contact center) industry. Even the simplest variations of this problem are known to be NPcomplete (Garey and Johnson 1978). Although staff scheduling has long been an important operations research problem, scheduling has recently become an important component of an emerging class of business software applications known as workforce management software. The need for effective workforce management systems has been driven primarily by the recent, rapid growth of the call center--customer contact center industry, in which efficient deployment of human resources is of crucial, strategic importance. Traditionally, in this industry, staff scheduling has been performed using ad hoc methods and operations research techniques (Cleveland and Mayben 1997).


Staff Scheduling for Inbound Call and Customer Contact Centers

AI Magazine

The staff scheduling problem is a critical problem in the call center (or, more generally, customer contact center) industry. This article describes DIRECTOR, a staff scheduling system for contact centers. DIRECTOR is a constraint-based system that uses AI search techniques to generate schedules that satisfy and optimize a wide range of constraints and service-quality metrics. DIRECTOR has successfully been deployed at more than 800 contact centers, with significant measurable benefits, some of which are documented in case studies included in this article.


Essential Technologies in Call Center Workforce Management RapidHits

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The two qualities can also create a competitive advantage, which is key priority for growing organizations. While agents hold the keys to your company's success, they are also the most expensive resource you have – accounting for 60% to 70% of expenses in a contact center. Depending on organizational needs, call centers can implement an array of different technologies, from basic to sophisticated. Monet Software predicts in their study that call centers using workforce management systems generally experience a minimum reduction of 2% for staff hours with an average potential savings in the 5-10% range. With workforce management it is generally expected that at least 25% of the time currently devoted to manual input can be saved.


The Deep Space Network Scheduling Problem

AAAI Conferences

We describe the Deep Space Network's scheduling problem based on a user requirement language. The problem is difficult to encode by almost all existing planning and scheduling systems. We describe how it can be mapped into a system that supports metric resources, durative action, simple temporal network constraints, and task hierarchy among other language features. We also describe how we adapted a local search scheduler to generate schedules. However, we argue that the application will best serve the users if local search is combined with systematic search. We describe how an implemented systematic search can be effectively applied to rescheduling.