Longevity in the changing retail industry comes from retailers that can deliver top-notch customer interactions. One outdoor specialty retailer knew its contact center platform couldn’t match its customers’ expectations for self-service support for product questions and credit card activities. It needed an upgrade to provide more real-time features and save customers from wasting their valuable time. Internally, its basic IVR and call routing system weren’t enough. In addition, staffing issues couldn’t keep up with rising call volume.
We deployed a new Cloud Solution – Cisco® Powered (HCS/CCaaS) for its five contact centers and 450 concurrent associates to serve both the credit card and retail customer service operations.
On the Credit Side
New security safeguards were put in place to meet regulations, including automatic caller verification and account escalation protocols. In addition, interactions are now more streamlined. The solution provides callers precision queueing to reach the best possible associate for complex issues, while robust self-service options give customers control over balance and credit availability inquiries, payments by phone, and even clearing credit holds in the case of suspected fraudulent transactions. In addition, improved outbound collections routing lets delinquent card holders make immediate payments without ever speaking to an associate.
For the Retail Division
Customers can call to get assistance placing orders, ask billing questions, perform order tracking, and get product assistance. Callers inquiring about specific products can be connected from the contact center to in-store employees using micro-applications on the associate desktop, removing barriers to an effective experience.
Both divisions offer courtesy callbacks so callers may be telephoned when it is their turns, eliminating time physically spent on hold. Finally, associates can more easily access backend customer information through soft phones and screen pops, as well as with CRM integration.
The new system now routes nearly two-thirds of inbound calls to the self-service IVR, with containment (calls sent through the IVR not routed to an associate) approaching the 65 percent mark. First call resolution sits at an impressive 85 percent, while average handle time improved 34 seconds in the first year for a $675,000 annual savings. Custom reporting provides detailed information to enable managers to optimize staff utilization, greatly reducing unproductive time (shrinkage) and saving $987,000 in the first year, while outbound collections routing saves the client about $1,000 a day. At the end of the first year, the client saw a total cost savings of over $2.5 million, all while improving both the customer and associate experience.