After starting this blog a few weeks ago, I have to admit, I’m addicted to checking my blog stats. It’s become a personal challenge to myself to see if I can draw more readers today than I did yesterday. I frequently look and wait for the stats page to load with the hopeful excitement of a wanna be daddy watching for that plus sign to the EPT.
I just downloaded the BlackBerry WordPress application while sitting at lunch. Now I can not only write and publish posts but I nervously see how many more people are reading what I have to say. As I was waiting for that WordPress “plus-sign”to load and wondering if people would think my baby was ugly, my mind wandered to our mobility strategy. I maintain that we’ve yet to scratch the surface when it comes to the benefits of mobility in HR apps. The last time I raised the point I was asked, “how often do you really need to change your direct deposit information while you are waiting for you latte anyway?”
Self-Service is so much more than just allowing you to change your information as an employee. For starters, as managers, we need to keep tabs on many things for our employees, from needing to be able to look up PTO balances and approve vacation requests to make comments on the Employee Performance Profile.
One of mandates of the business is to keep distractions from the associates so that they can focus on the customers. Makes sense. This particular business unit has a number of large call centers and the managers in those centers handle are charged with removing those distractions. What would a distraction be? Let’s say Sally CSR wants to take the day off and asks her boss about it. She tells her to send an email and she’ll check the schedule and her balances and let her know. From that point forward, Sally is distracted by waiting for a response from her boss.
Enter MMSS (Mobile Manager Self Service – I came up with that all on my own!). The manager has a nifty tablet device other than the iPad because those come from the competition and are illegal here. Sally CSR asks about the vacation day and Molly Manager is able to pull up the schedule on the spot, check Sally’s PTO balance and then approve the request while updating the schedule, all in a matter of second, all without taking a step. The distraction is removed.
Another problem is that the managers need to be on the floor instead of in their office. Managerial tasks like maintaining notes on your employees for performance reviews take time off the floor, which lowers customer service as well. With MMSS and that nifty tablet again, the manager can be making notes in the employee’s performance profile as she encounters something noteworthy.
Molly manager can review call metrics and pull up analytical reports on the fly that might show that Billy is taking too long to resolve calls today. While listening on calls, she might learn that Billy is taking longer because he continually has to look up the answers to questions and needs more training. On the spot, she can register him for the next available training class to resolve the issue.
When thinking about mobility, the question is often asked, what would the employee or manager want to see as a mobile application. We need to stop thinking that way and instead think of it in terms of allowing the manager to take their desk with them. That is empowerment.