Mon. May 20th, 2024

How to Calculate Shrinkage in Call Center

One of the important key metrics in the call center is “Shrinkage”. Shrinkage denotes absenteeism in the call center. A higher shrinkage can lead to revenue loss, a negative impact on other call center metrics, and call center efficiency.


How to Calculate Shrinkage in a Call Center
How to Calculate Shrinkage in a Call Center


Although every call center aims for 0% shrinkage, as per the process there could be some threshold shrinkage.

In this blog today, we will discuss everything about call center Shrinkage.

Agenda of Blog:

Let us discuss (in brief) the below points to understand call center shrinkage in detail:

  • What is Shrinkage?
  • Types of Shrinkage?
  • Reason for Shrinkage?
  • How to control Shrinkage?
  • How to Calculate Shrinkage in Call Center

What is Shrinkage?

Shrinkage is a call center metric that denotes the absenteeism of agents who were rostered (Paid FTEs )  to handle the calls but were not available due to any reason in a particular shift, day, or month.

Every call Center schedules a certain number of agents to handle calls in a specific shift, and if the agents do not turn up in the required shift or days then this is termed as shrinkage.

Type of Shrinkage:

Shrinkage can be categorized into 2 types:

1. Planned Shrinkage:

When the agent pre-informs to the team leader about his absentees in advance (with required approval) then this shrinkage is counted under “Planned Shrinkage”.

Example: Planned Holidays, Medical Treatment, Family Functions, etc.

2. Unplanned Shrinkage:

The Shrinkage due to emergency leaves or no prior information in to the supervisor is counted under “Unplanned Shrinkage”.

Example: Unplanned Leaves, Same-day intimation, etc.

Also Read: How to Calculate manpower in Call Center ?

Reason for Shrinkage:

There could be various reasons for Shrinkage (Planned /Unplanned). Some common reasons are outlined below:

  •  Planned Holidays
  •  Medical Exigencies
  •  Family Functions
  •  Personal Issues

How to control Shrinkage?

Controlling Shrinkage requires people management skills. Below are some proven tips to control shrinkage.

  • Proper Roster Planning
  • Holding unnecessary leaves
  • Shift End Huddle for next day roster.
  • Analyze the historical Trend 
  • Focus and track repeat outliers. 

How to Calculate Shrinkage in Call Center ?

Now let’s understand how to calculate Shrinkage in Call Center. As mentioned above the shrinkage metrics indicate the difference between the available agents and rostered agents to take the call.

How-to-Calculate-Shrinkage-in-Call Center
How-to-Calculate-Shrinkage-in-Call Center
How to Calculate Shrinkage in a Call Center


The simple formula to calculate the Overall shrinkage is:

(Planned Shrinkage + Unplanned Shrinkage)

Formula to Calculate Planned Shrinkage:

(Total Number of leaves + Total number of Week-Offs)/ Total Headcount

Formula to Calculate Unplanned Shrinkage:

(Total Number Rostered Agents – Total number of Available agents)/ Total Number of Rostered Agents

Let’s understand it with an example for a better explanation:

Suppose there are 30 team members in a team. Below is the attendance schedule grid of these team members for a specific day:

Agent Schedule Count
Total Headcount 30
Agents on Leaves 5
Agents on Week-Offs 5
Total Rostered Agents 20
Total Available Agents 17
Absent Agent 3

In the grid above and as per the calculation we shared , below is the calculation of Shrinkage:

Planned shrinkage:

(Total Number of leaves + Total number of Week-Offs)/ Total Headcount

After Putting the grid number in to the formula:

(5 + 5)/30 

10/30 =.33

Planned Shrinkage is 33%

Unplanned shrinkage:

(Total Number Rostered Agents – Total number of Available agents)/ Total Number of Rostered Agents

After Putting the grid number into the formula:


3/20 = 0.15

Planned Shrinkage is 15%

Now to calculate the overall Shrinkage we need to add both 

Planned Shrinkage + Unplanned Shrinkage

i.e. 33%+ 15% 

Overall Shrinkage is 39%

That’s how you calculate the Shrinkage of the process. 

One question that arises many times is:

What is idle Shrinkage?

The idle shrinkage depends on the process type i.e. Domestic or International Process

In the Domestic process, an agent gets 1 week off which means 14% Planned Shrinkage, and considering 2 % of Leave and 8% of Unplanned Shrinkage 

So the idle shrinkage for a Domestic process should be < 24%.

Likewise, the idle shrinkage for International processes should not exceed 35%


So Friend’s this is all about the Shrinkage Metrics in Call Center and I hope after reading this blog all your doubts related to Shrinkage Metrics will be cleared.

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