Without flexibility and room for change, schedules can get stale. Companies can find that schedules are becoming less and less of a good fit for evolving staffing requirements. Some agents, especially Millennial and Gen Z agents, can find that static schedules don’t offer the flexibility they crave. Perhaps junior workers get stranded in less-desirable schedules on weekends, holidays, or in late shifts they they’d prefer not to work. In many cases offering shift bidding more often can increase schedule efficiency and improve overall agent satisfaction. But without a world-class WFM system, Shift Bidding can be complicated and time-consuming. Many businesses find it impractical if not impossible to run a shift bid more than twice a year.

Bid More Often

Here’s where our Workforce Management application comes in: with powerful tools to facilitate bids, WFM administrators can create and execute bids in a fraction of the time it took in the past, allowing them to run bids much more often. Some find they can bid for schedules monthly, semi-monthly or even weekly. WFM even makes it possible to run special bids for holidays, or for intraday offerings for OT or Voluntary Time Off.

Balancing Fairness with Performance

Using optimal schedules based on the most up-to-date staffing needs forecast, you can ensure a more efficient fit with changing business requirements. And you control the crucial step of ordering your employees to determine their order in the bid. Consider a ranking method that aligns with your business goals, emphasizes fairness but also incentivizes better performance. Think about a merit-based possibility to engage your staff more. Rather than an abrupt change that causes distress among your agents, you can gradually evolve towards a merit-based shift bid. You can also strike a balance between performance and quality scores for example by using them both in weighted combination.


Before diving in, carefully consider your strategy for communicating with agents and supervisors. Create a clear, compelling message that tell them why a new Shift Bidding process is under consideration, especially if you are thinking about moving towards a performance-based bidding system. Use Workforce Management to create What-If scenarios that show the benefit of using new schedules for bidding: better staffing efficiency, better customer experience, increased fairness, and the opportunity for agents to have more control over the schedules they work. Listen to agent concerns, make them feel that they are being heard.

And be absolutely sure that your first bid is set up and executed properly; if the agents’ first new bidding experience is poor, they can form a negative opinion that undermines morale. Take advantage of our experienced consultants who have been through this process many times and can help guide you past any pitfalls.

Results in Less Time

When it’s time for agents to bid, you’ll need an efficient interface that allows agents to quickly make their choices and see the results. Make sure they know their position in the bid order so that they can take this into account when ranking their preferred schedules. Our Workforce Optimization Agent Portal provides a clear, easy-to-use interface that shows agents their position in the bid, the schedules available for bidding, and let’s them rank the schedules according to their preferences. Once schedules are assigned and made official, agents immediately see the results in the WFO portal and the optional ME mobile app. All done with no need for manual sign-up sheets or manual reports to communicate results.

The benefits of efficient shift bidding can be impactful: users have seen increases in schedule adherence of 4% or more as well as productivity improvements of 5% or more. Improved schedule efficiency, time savings for WFM admins, improved agent satisfaction offered by shift bidding are only some of the ways that WFM creates impactful change for our customers. Contact the experts at Call Design to discover more.