Shrinkage is the loss of resources due to things that are not known at the time of scheduling. This can be absences, like paid time off and sick leave, and activities which are not related to a skill, like trainings and meetings. The shrinkage value is used to calculate the total number of agents needed to handle the forecasted volume by including the number of agents required to cover for agents who are absent and agents who are scheduled on non-skill activities which are not yet planned when scheduling the agents.

The shrinkage to use when generating forecasts is defined in the skill templates for each skill. It can be set on day level or intraday level. See Adjust skill targets for more information. When you enter shrinkage for forecasts, you must account for both internal and external factors that might take agents away from answering contacts. These factors could include meetings, trainings, or coaching that are often not scheduled until closer to the actual date.

When you look at the forecasted need in Calabrio WFM, you can in most places select if you want to include shrinkage or not. When you include the shrinkage, the forecast shown is the number of agents needed to be scheduled, including the additional agents who are needed to cover the expected but unplanned absences and non-skill activities. When you do not include shrinkage, the forecast shown is the number of agents needed to cover the work on the skill.

Shrinkage levels are often different depending on the time frame. Most absences and non-skill activities for today and tomorrow are already known, so the shrinkage is low. Looking at a period three weeks from now, we need to use a higher shrinkage because there is still a lot that is unknown. Handle this automatically with Dynamic shrinkage templates. See Manage dynamic shrinkage for more information on how to create and apply dynamic shrinkage templates.

Staffing budgets in also an area where you must consider the shrinkage. In the Budgets module, this is divided in shrinkage and efficiency shrinkage. Shrinkage includes all absences, for example vacation and illness. Efficiency shrinkage includes all non-skill activities, for example short breaks, meetings, and training. See Create a staffing budget for more information.