Hiring part-time employees is becoming a common trend among contact centers. It’s indeed a more flexible arrangement, but the management aspect can be challenging.
More and more call centers are hiring part-time workers as a flexible staffing solution to cut operating costs, especially during off-peak hours. With a team of part-timers, managers can also optimize work scheduling by assigning more people to specific hours during which call volumes usually spike.
However, supervising your part-time staff can be tricky, especially if you’re new to such a setup. Here are five staff management tips that will help you increase employee engagement among your part-time agents.
Don’t treat them as second-class employees.
One of the most common misconceptions that managers have about part-timers is that they’re not as productive as full-time employees. This kind of thinking can create a barrier between you and your staff.
To avoid this, keep in mind that part-time work is just as valuable as your ’round-the-clock operations. This staffing arrangement allows your contact center to be more agile and effective, so you should treat your freelance workers as important members of your organization as well. Make them feel that they belong in the company, even though they may not be in the office for the full eight hours. This is one way to motivate them to do their best in any given task.
Assign a manager for part-time shifts.
Your part-time employees also have needs, so assigning someone to ensure that their concerns are being addressed is a great way of providing them a good work environment. Aside from that, you should have someone who can monitor their tasks by conducting a performance review or an overall employee evaluation as needed. By doing this, you can gain an accurate measure of their productivity and find ways to boost employee engagement.
Engage them in training sessions.
Whether they’re part of your frontline team or your back office operations, your part-time workers execute crucial tasks in the contact center. Therefore, you must invest in improving their skills and knowledge by designing training programs exclusively for them. This way, they can perform better and help push the organization toward its goals.
Make their working hours consistent.
Having a part-time work is no easy feat. Often, these employees struggle to make their own schedules fit together, as many of them may be juggling two or three jobs. It would help if you can make your part-timers’ shifts consistent. If this isn’t possible, you may opt to plot weekly, instead of daily, schedules. They should then be informed of their shifts ahead of time so they’d know what to expect. This would help them build a routine around their schedules and, in the long run, would prevent absenteeism.
Always communicate with them.
Staff management is always challenging, but working with part-timers can even be more difficult because of the limited time of interaction you get with them. One way to address this is to schedule regular weekly meetings. During these meetings, encourage your part-time staff to speak up about their concerns or the challenges they encounter. Also, make sure to collect their contact information so you can reach them if needed.