IT Employment

Knowledge Management in Call Centers: How Routing Rules Influence Expertise and Service Quality

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Executive Summary

In a call center, customers are assigned to service agents by routing policies that seek to balance several objectives. Usually, these policies follow myopic rules in order to minimize the waiting time or maximize the quality experienced by the next customer. However, there is a secondary effect of the routing assignment: by learning-on-the-job, the development of the agent's expertise depends on the calls they take. This paper address the effect that agent learning has on the service level experienced by customers. A dynamical model of learning and forgetting links the routing policy with knowledge acquisition, treating expertise as an endogenous rather an exogenous variable.

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