Automating Business Processes with Workplace by Facebook
Integrations and bots mean we're working smarter than ever.
December 11th, 2017
In the final instalment of our Workplace blog series (you can check out the first two here and here), we’re going to talk about the technological improvements we’ve made to our internal processes thanks to the platform. Automation is an integral part of our customer service operation. But, prior to using Workplace, we hadn’t turned this expertise towards our internal comms.
Workplace offered the ideal opportunity to change that. The platform’s messenger service, WorkChat, has embraced chatbots as enthusiastically as Facebook Messenger. We have valuable time back in our work day thanks to integrations with our workforce management (WFM) software (RotaCloud), and our CS platform. They make greater visibility of individual operator productivity available to us at-a-glance.
One of our concerns when we were first researching Workplace was how easy it would be to get our workforce of 300+ people onto the platform. How would we restrict access to people with active company email addresses? Could we bulk-invite most of our workforce at once?
The Workplace and Azure AD integration made setting up single sign-on for our colleagues a breeze. Once we’d set up the connection between our email library in Office 365 and Workplace, our colleagues could sign in at our custom domain with just their email address and password.
The biggest advantage to this approach is that we don’t have to manually add new starters. Once an FM Outsource email account is created, they automatically receive access to our Workplace domain.
An integration with RotaCloud means operator availability and productivity are readily visible within Workplace.
When working a shift, our customer service operators set to ‘online’ status on our communications platform (Gnatta). If an operator's status doesn't match the one we expect, our Workplace bot will send a message to the Workforce Management group to let them know. This frees up supervisors’ time to assist operators, rather than having to constantly monitor their online status.
That group updates our WFM team automatically, letting them know which operators are supposed to be online that hour, who’s due to go on a break, and who’s due to finish their shift. This status check used to mean cross-checking WFM software with Gnatta and Skype for Business statuses. In a business with operators based across locations, streamlining this process has been a real asset; our WFM team now have more time to analyse and source upcoming resource needs.
As a customer care outsourcer, we need to ensure our operators are keeping their product knowledge up to date. We’ve always used a weekly quiz, but our teams’ growth was making this difficult for supervisors to manage. Sending a word doc to 10 people, marking them, and sending them back once a week was alright, but doing this for a team of 100 people was getting out of hand.
We’ve completely eradicated this problem with a bot in Workplace. A supervisor sets the questions, and the answers, once a week. This goes live on the same day, at the same time, and operators can then message the bot with their answers. They’ll immediately receive their score back, and if they want to discuss their answers the bot will generate a message to a member of the Learning & Development team.
We no longer need to pay a subscription for a quiz solution, and the Learning & Development team get more time to complete quality checks and support operators.
One of our core values is ‘Share Your Thoughts’ and we wanted to enable everyone in our teams to provide anonymous feedback on their experience with us, what they enjoy, and what they think we could do better.
This was of vital importance for getting feedback from our out-of-office staff. Having an ideas box in the kitchen was all well and good, but we were concerned we were increasing the distance between our office team and our outreach staff, all because we didn’t know what we didn’t know.
That’s why we introduced an ‘Ideas bot’. Colleagues can leave anonymous feedback no matter where they’re based. All they need to do is search for the bot in the WorkChat search bar.
We’ve stuck this one on the end because whilst it’s not necessarily essential, it did help us streamline one of our favourite things to do. Our annual awards ceremony celebrates our colleagues’ success, and every year a select few awards are voted for by everyone in the business. Rather than asking people to email their submissions to us, they sent in their nominations anonymously via our ‘Reward Success’ bot.
Due to our rapid expansion over the last 5 years, our internal processes have all had to change in line with the business’ requirements. But these changes have always been reactionary – we’ve adapted to the position we were in, rather than anticipating our future needs. Now we're creating processes that will scale as we do with automation and Workplace. Our processes are the simplest they’ve ever been, despite the fact we’re now employing more people than ever before.