A few years ago, successful call center manager, trainer, consultant, and owner/operator Tim Montgomery said: "Don't Attack the Queue." To front-line managers of a business segment that looks to average speed of answer as one measure of performance, this might sound strange - but it may not be as strange as you'd think. Let's take a closer look.
"An ACD should be allowed to do the job it was designed to do."
What Tim was advocating then still makes sense today. Tim believes an ACD should be allowed to do the job it was designed to do – to efficiently distribute calls to available agents with the right skill set. If a supervisor overreacts to spikes in call volumes and makes adjustments too quickly before the ACD can respond, you're essentially wasting the good money you spent on it, and may be creating other unwanted consequences as well.
So, here's an idea to consider: Set your real-time alerting system up to wait for a pre-determined period of time prior to generating an alert when a condition is met. For instance, generate an alert only when "calls in queue are greater than X for [period of time]" or "oldest call waiting has been waiting for longer than X [period of time]".
That way, the center will get alerts when you really need it – after the ACD has done its job to the best of its ability and yet the undesired condition still exists.