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Case Studies : Callstream
"A happy customer tells one person, but an unhappy customer will tell ten." The adages about the positive and negative impact of bad service on business have been thrown around for many, many years now. But not until the recent study by The Institute of Customer Service have we been able to finally quantify this, with the survey results attributing the monetary cost of bad service at a staggering £10.5 billion per year in the UK alone.
This figure seems implausible at first glance, but when you consider that, from a customer service perspective, a single point of failure can affect the good service delivery of the entire value chain from manufacturing giant to online home shopper, it’s actually a very realistic figure. For example, a simple mistake in the order quantity of components at the beginning of the manufacturing lifecycle can have a far reaching, waterfall-like impact; production is short, delivery windows, service level agreements and KPIs are missed. Customers are failed.
The high cost of not managing your suppliers
In addition to the impact on reputation and repeat/new business of such failings, there is a genuine cost to business through supplier failure. According to the survey, this alone accounts for 60% of senior managers (earning over £100k per annum*), now spending one day or more a month resolving issues. This number falls to less than 28% for executives in the £90,000 and £99,999 bracket and down to less than 5% of people in the £10,000 to £19,000 a year bracket. So the cost benefit of managing the complexities of extended business supplier management is evident.
A holistic view of the business, supports better Service for Customers
Whilst this can be mitigated at a department level through effective service level agreements and KPI management, the wider impact on customer service failing to effectively manage these issues and, more importantly, to join up all the interactions across the business is now ever clearer.
By using the same system across many departments, companies can get one, true version of data – one version of the truth. Often referred to as the platform approach, diverse departments such as IT Service Desk, HR/Payroll, Customer Service, Facilities, use the same software, tailored to their individual requirements so that each has a solution that meets their needs, while being part of an organisation-wide system.
It was this issue that brought Callstream; a B2B supplier to the call centre sector, to Sunrise. They were looking for a centralised yet flexible Customer Service Management platform that could support its expanded client base and consolidate key operational processes.
Now the Service Desk platform is used extensively throughout the business to record information about customers. As well as the Customer Service Desk, Sales & Account Management, Accounts & Billing, Project Management and Senior Management all have tailored versions of the same system. Now the system provides an audit trail for everything that happens with customers, so that anyone within the business that is dealing with a customer can see at any time, exactly what is happening now and the history behind it.
The result? They can communicate more effectively, reset expectations and keep customers close. And it’s this level of customer relationship management that is reducing the cost impact on businesses. In fact, according to the study, it is the companies that invest most in time and effort in order to deliver the highest quality customer service that have a real advantage over the competitors.
Investing in Customer Service reaps Benefits to the Business
We have also seen this in the example of ANS Group, an IT cloud services provider, which following the adoption of a Sunrise Customer Service Management platform to help it deliver high levels of customer service during a period of rapid growth, has seen turnover grow in just two years.
ANS Group uses the system across its business, managing not just IT Incident Management and Change Management for customers, but also supporting its critical business processes. From tracking and capturing sales leads through to managing customer contracts, order processing and scheduling consultants’ time, all aspects of its customer records including 1,000 contracts and over 25,000 customer assets are kept in the database.
As well as managing IT services to customers, the system is used to track the whole customer relationship, easily accessed by staff for daily tasks and reporting. As a result, even with its growth last year, the organisation has managed to maintain or enhance its customer service levels.
We are seeing a marked increase in the demand for this type of requirement reflected in the ITTs (Invitation to Tend) and RFPs (Request for Proposal) we receive and it is our belief that we are ensuring that our customers are giving great customer service as a result.
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About Sunrise Software:
Sunrise was founded in 1994 and is an independent provider of Service Management solutions for internal and external facing IT service operations. In 2003 they launched Sostenuto, a process driven, entirely browser based solution. Their customer base includes blue chip and public sector organisations.
Callstream provides cloud-based call management technology to the UK insurance, travel and retail markets. For 15 years, Callstream has developed and integrated bespoke call management technology with clients’ broker, CRM and payment platforms. Clients, including The A & A Group, Fresh Insurance and Open GI, have enjoyed greater insight into customer interactions, leading to improved conversion and retention. Callstream was founded in 1999 and differentiates itself through its proactive focus on delivering bespoke technology that meets precise commercial objectives.
Published: Monday, April 14, 2014