2011 Winners and Case Studies
Listening to Customers and Staff – Eight Customer Contact Innovation Award Winners Transform their Operations
On 12th April 2011, eight winners gained prestigious innovation awards for outstanding initiatives that transformed their operations both within and beyond the contact centre. The overall winner was Autoglass, with individual category prizes taken by Apex Credit Management Ltd, British Gas, gem, LV=, Portsmouth City Council, Shop Direct and Surrey County Council.
These prestigious awards, organised by the Professional Planning Forum, celebrate the achievements of the industry’s innovators and offer a benchmark of excellence within the industry. They showcase innovations that are transforming the experience of customers and employees and demonstrate how planning can make a real difference. The awards were presented at the Planning Forum’s 11th anniversary conference in Birmingham on 12th April, where each talked about how they achieved their success.
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Autoglass was presented with the overall 2011 Customer Contact Innovation Award for their highly successful but radical approach to enterprise resource modelling, which, aligned to key metrics created capacity and flexibility in the branch network to serve an extra 3,500 customers monthly, at no cost, and at the same time raise customer satisfaction. They also won the Innovation Award for Enterprise Planning.
“Marketing worked on the principle of ‘fish when the fish were biting’ – in other words, advertising heavily when demand was at its highest. We had to make them aware of why this wasn’t the best approach unless the whole operation’s resource levels were aligned to meet this demand,” explained Sven Hill, Head of Total Net Conversion. “We had to change from managing budget to managing opportunity. Every single branch needed visibility of opportunities to make that happen,” added Tim McKeegan, Performance Manager.
Service delivery in the branches has been transformed by forecast and capacity utilisation models, developed by the contact centre planning team, which raised peak branch resources by 27%. Implemented alongside contact centre initiatives, extended branch opening hours and increasing flexibility in all areas, the models have focussed on understanding revenue leakage and maximising opportunities – upping Total Net Conversion by 4%. In the space of a year, time-to-serve has drastically improved and customer Net Promoter® scores raised by 10 points. The approach at Autoglass has been adopted as best practice by the parent company and is being rolled out globally.
“This is a fantastic achievement from their planning team,” says Paul Smedley, Executive Director of the Professional Planning Forum. “Autoglass have made a colossal cultural shift and actually changed the way that they manage operations across the whole company. People now work when and where there is demand, as a result of getting the right metrics and planning real flexibility. It’s had a massive impact on the customer experience. Every senior management team can learn something from Autoglass’ approach; that’s what makes the company such a worthy winner.”
The winners were selected by a team of judges who visited each of the 20 shortlisted organisations, and then assessed them against a strict set of criteria. “Every year judging gets more exciting. The customer contact industry is changing so rapidly and each year we see new innovations that challenge the way organisations work, with impact reaching well beyond the contact centre,” comments Steve Woosey, the Planning Forum’s Membership Director.
Seven further awards recognised innovation in specific areas:
|The Customer Contact Innovation award for Integrated Outbound was awarded to Apex Credit Management Ltd for the way in which their use of SAS and speech analytics have transformed debt collection strategies and data segmentation, increasing cash collected per agent hour by 30% and liquidation by 20%.
|The Customer Contact Innovation award for Planning Insight was won by LV= or how listening to customers and colleagues, combined with a ground-breaking approach to planning change, has helped triple profits and drive employee engagement.
|The Customer Contact Innovation award for Performance Culture was won by British Gas for their pioneering work using speech analytics to focus coaching so that everyone makes specific personal changes in how they speak to customers – sustaining changed behaviour for a year and doubling sales, compared to a control group.
|The Customer Contact Innovation award for Customer Interaction was secured by gem for their new culture of customer interaction. They engage social media as part of a broader contact strategy for clients, capturing better customer insight and helping to improve the customer experience.
|The Customer Contact Innovation award for Service Transformation was presented to Portsmouth City Council for how the housing service at Portsmouth Council halved the cost of repair and saved £2m pa across the service by transforming the service to focus on what actually matters to the customer.
|The Customer Contact Innovation award for Enterprise Intelligence was gained by Shop Direct due to how their new management information strategy created the unifying vision that enabled the business to halve complaints and improve the cost: demand ratio by a quarter.
|The Customer Contact Public Sector Innovation award was won by Surrey County Council as a result of how their new model of contact centre became a diagnostic tool for the entire council, driving savings of over £500,000 and halving complaints.
|Launched last year, Planning Forum Hero awards were presented to five outstanding customer contact planning professionals. Recognising their exceptional personal contribution in developing the contribution of planning within their own organisations, the 2011 Heroes are Gerry Chambers, Forecasting and MI Manager at Student Loans Company, Paul Milloy, National Resource Planning Manager at British Gas Services, Su-ann Pauline, Resource Planning Manager at Aegon Scottish Equitable, David Hingley, Head of Management Information at Shop Direct and Debbie Grundy, Manager at the Department for Work and Pensions.
Previous winners in 2010 were Phil Anderson, Resource and Planning Manager at Gold Medal Travel, Adrian Hawes, Resource Optimisation Manager at Aviva, Aaron Gourlay, Senior MI and Resource Analyst at Eurostar and Nick Lane, Director of Strategy and Planning at Orange UK.
The Customer Contact Innovation Awards were presented on 12th April at the Gala dinner at the close of Customer Contact Planning 2011 conference. A hugely successful conference with over 500 individuals registered for the conference and the gala awards dinner, it continues to be a key event in Contact Centre’s managers’ diaries.
Every year, the Planning Forum produces case studies, for all organisations on the Innovation Awards shortlist, and organises facilitated site visits to meet with winners and finalists - the idea being to provide its members with examples of best practice from some of Europe’s most innovative customer contact operations. Previous winners have included Scottish Power, QVC, EDF Energy, Salford City Council, Tesco, HBOS, Norwich Union and T-Mobile. Contact the Professional Planning Forum for more details on any of these award winning case studies at www.planningforum.co.uk or email@example.com.
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