Forecasting & Planning
How effective Forecasting and Planning can bring commercial benefit
In today’s fast-paced business landscape, a robust forecasting and planning capability is important for gaining a decisive competitive advantage. Customers demand swift and reliable solutions. With precise forecasting and planning, your operation can meet or exceed customer expectations, translating both directly and indirectly into increased revenue.
Accurate planning is the method for eliminating costly pockets of overstaffing and optimising resource availability across operational areas. It allows you to allocate workload to the right individuals, boosting accuracy, customer satisfaction, and reducing rework. In sales, flawless planning ensures the perfect balance, safeguarding against lost opportunities while minimising acquisition costs.
Times of change demand even greater reliance on forecasting and planning. Whether it’s a new product launch, technology implementation, or a major shift in outsourcing, efficient service delivery to both existing and new customers is paramount to customer retention and maximising value.
Providing the right amount of work for colleagues with optimum scheduling can also help to foster a positive colleague experience and also free up management time for more strategic endeavours and performance management.
Let us help you equip your organisation with strong forecasting and planning capabilities, creating a path towards and exemplary operational effectiveness and improved commercial success.
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Forecasting and Planning - Atlantic Insight Services
We conduct an in-depth analysis of your end-to-end operations planning tools and processes, benchmark them against industry best practices, and deliver actionable recommendations for improvement. Our prioritised solutions focus on providing you with significant and immediate benefits, streamlining efficiency, identifying commercial opportunities, and enhancing overall performance.
We specialise in perfecting your demand forecasting models and processes to avoid costly overstaffing and ensure customer satisfaction. With a blend of academic rigour and extensive real-world experience, we maximise forecast accuracy by selecting the optimum models, gaining valuable insights across your business, and fostering consensus-driven judgments. Our commitment doesn’t end there; we transfer forecasting knowledge and best practices to your analysts and the broader operation, empowering your team for sustained, ongoing success. Trust our expertise to optimise not only operational demand forecasting but also sales volume predictions and supply chain activities, including estimations for promotional campaigns.
Experience efficiency in your operational centre through our tailored resource requirement estimation models. Whether it’s inbound, outbound, administration, technical back office, email, webchat, or field-based work, our versatile models cover all domains and functions. With successful automation of various algorithms, including queueing theory, we deliver accurate resource projections that achieve target service levels at challenging yet achievable performance benchmarks. Our models allow you to test different assumptions and explore resource requirements and commercial outcomes across a range of scenarios.
Discover the perfect mix across customer satisfaction, employee engagement, and operational costs with an optimum scheduling framework. With extensive experience in various scheduling mechanisms, we tailor solutions to your specific needs, ensuring resources closely align with daily and interval requirement profiles.
Enhance your Resource Planning capability and adapt seamlessly to changing demands, be it customer behaviour, marketing activities, or other factors. We collaborate with you to develop and maintain long, medium, and short-term tools, ensuring efficient planning for recruitment, holidays, absences, meetings, breaks and lunches, aiming for consistent service levels across every interval. The result for your operation is a cost-effective alignment of resources meeting a varying demand, ensuring reliable service levels and operational excellence.
Benefit from our wealth of experience in implementing and optimising Workforce Management Systems (WFMs). Whether you require support in project management for a new WFM implementation or seek to unlock the full potential of your existing system, we’ve got you covered. With our expertise, your organisation can achieve WFM integration and harness the full value of these systems, streamlining operations, and maximising efficiency.
Gain a significant competitive advantage by harnessing the potential of a well-designed and efficient Support Services function. Our consultancy is dedicated to partnering with you in creating the optimum structure, identifying crucial capabilities to drive your desired outcomes. Drawing from extensive practical experience, we provide reliable insights into team optimisation, enabling the recruitment of top-tier leaders, analysts and administrators. Additionally, our tailored coaching programs will bolster the development of your forecasting, planning, real-time management, reporting, and analysis resources, empowering your team for success.
Achieve a robust budget plan, detailing the necessary resources and cost required to provide services and deliver excellent customer service. The submission of a budget can be difficult and complex, taking into account many different factors, including challenging and achievable performance targets, opportunities to automate and also risk factors. The creation of a budget can place a huge challenge on an operational leadership team, and often the necessary skills are not in place to deliver a full submission. Let us help by delivering a budget submission, with a full audit trail of assumptions, that supports excellent delivery of customer service.
Client Success Stories - Forecasting & Planning
We have significant demonstrable success in improving forecasting accuracy and resource planning in a wide range of industries and applications, including multichannel contact centre, administration centres, field operations, technical back office and knowledge centres. Here are just a few of our successes:
Ensuring accurate planning for outsourcer across multiple accounts
An outsourcer was struggling with different planning methods and processes across many accounts. Once we understood the requirements, we designed and created a resource planning tool allowing the business to plan recruitment and account transfers in an accurate and timely manner, along with other advisor parameters, to efficiently meet the flexible demands of their clients. The model we designed optimised the advisors’ annualised hours flexibility to obtain a close resource match for each account every week.
Organisational design and recruitment support for Customer Services support team
A digital retailer had an urgent need for support when all its planning team left the business within a very short time period! We supported the business with the redesign of the resource planning team. Then we designed selection exercises and managed the interview process. The result was a well-balanced team ready to take on the forecasting & planning challenges. During the team-building process, we carried out many planning processes in the interim, including forecasting and planning the resource at overseas outsourcers.
Maximising interval match for an outsourcer with a multi-site Covid-19 contract
Our client was performing work across multiple sites as part of the government initiatives to deal with the Covid-19 epidemic. Our client needed urgent support to create a scheduling pattern that could be applied fairly across all advisors across all sites. We quickly understood all constraints and devised a schedule framework that was rolled out and delivered the closest interval match against the client requirement.
Successful implementation of a WFM
An outsourcer client was keen to implement the Teleopti WFM swiftly and accurately. We project managed the implementation of Teleopti WFM, ensuring that the system was setup optimally to the requirements of the client, and was producing reliable output. We designed and implemented processes to maximise useful application of outputs. Training took place for both system and processes for successful implementation.
Maximising revenue for a digital retailer through improving service levels during peak trading
In the previous Christmas period, a digital retailer with a global estate had abandoned 9% of inbound calls, harming customer experience and missing out on revenue. Our work on this project involved selecting and implementing more accurate forecasting models, together with defining best practice and methods to gather insight from across the business. A planning tool was created, guiding the right actions across a global estate, in the run-up to Christmas trading. During this peak period, despite tight timescales, the target answering rate was achieved, at over 97%, avoiding the customer dissatisfaction and revenue loss of the previous year.
Optimising forecasting and outsourcing processes for an energy utility
We partnered with a major UK utility business going through enormous change, with specific resource planning problems causing poor service levels to customers. We carried out a full review of forecasting, planning and real time tools and processes, highlighting over 80 opportunities to improve. We supported improvements to forecasting methods and also major change to the processes for planning outsourcer resource requirements. We also assisted the business with an organisational restructure of support services. The result was a substantial improvement to customer service levels and customer satisfaction.
Ensuring banking customer contacts are answered within target service level
We were engaged by a bank struggling to achieve target service levels and maintain customer satisfaction. We introduced new forecasting and resource planning tools & processes for the business’s inbound Customer Services centre and various back-office teams. We shared models with in-house staff to manage going forward. The result of models and robust processes was service levels hitting targets reliably, with happier customers.
Accurate forecasting for sales demand based on promotional activity
An appliance manufacturer selling directly to customers was finding it difficult to forecast product demand accurately. Our first step to help was to understand the historical statistical relationships between product demand and various types of promotional activity, including Direct Mail, press ads & TV. We used these relationships to boost the accuracy of product forecasts, improving both stock availability and the resulting revenue.
Working with us - transforming Forecasting and Planning
At Atlantic Insight, we believe that effective forecasting and planning are key foundations for operational success. Our comprehensive methodologies are a product of years of expertise, a passion for innovation, and a dedication to unlocking your organisation’s true potential.
To find out how we can help you improve your forecasting and resource planning capability, please contact us for a discussion of your problems and opportunities
Call +44 (0) 161 438 2009
Office: Ground Floor, Adamson House, Towers Business Park, Wilmslow Rd, Manchester M20 2YY