My Transcom Experience

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Author: Camilla Haugs Eilertsen

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Transcom Norway defines their business culture

A Business Culture project is being implemented throughout  Transcom Norway. We would like to take care of the parts of our culture that we think is right, and remove the parts that are wrong. We have to be clear on how we do things and why.

Culture is a key component in business and has an impact on management, decisions and all business functions from accounting to production. Business culture is related to behaviour, ethics, etiquette and more. A business culture will encompass as the organization’s values, visions, working style, beliefs and habits. A positive culture will contribute to a positive working environment. But if you have a negative culture, this will very quickly ruin a good workplace.

At Transcom Norway, we like to think of our business culture like “the way we do things around here”. The idea behind this project is to eliminate the parts of our business culture that does not work, and at the same time continue to strengthen and make the good business culture more visible. All leaders and the whole administration are included in this project. We are divided into different groups, all working on different parts of the business culture. Examples of themes that we are working on are;

  • Communication
  • Rituals
  • Leadership training
  • Recognition of new employees
  • Leaders as good role models

One of the things that are well rooted in our culture is our monthly happenings. These can be everything from a great Halloween party to serving ice cream to the agents. The most important thing about these happenings is that leaders and administration do something for the agents. We believe that this will help reducing the gorge between leaders/admin and agents and give the agents a boost of well-being and everyday-comfort. All of  this brings us a great business culture that increases ownership, customer satisfactory and revenue.

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Author: Eimantas Liutkevicius

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Transcom Lithuania’s employer branding initiative awarded 2nd place in national HR competition

Every year the Lithuanian HR association invites companies to share their best practices for employee motivation, engagement and loyalty that create additional and add significant value to their business. This annual event is a great opportunity to gain insights in the practices that has proven to be successful in other companies as well as share to our own successes at Transcom Lithuania. But– it is also a friendly competition for companies that have developed successful and innovative ways to improve motivation and engagement

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This year Transcom Lithuania decided to participate in the contest and tell more about our own successful employer branding initiative that we call Quality Month.

Our Annual Quality Month is a great experience for every employee of Transcom that combines a fun and result driven environment with discussions about Transcom’s values. It is a great opportunity to feel the thrilling excitement of competing not only with your friends, but also with co-workers from other projects from all over the country, reaching a higher result. All these activities then culminate in the most popular event of the year –the Quality Month Cup, where each employee has the chance of winning first prize. The winner is usually selected via a vote of a committee made up from local management members.

The contest itself differs year by year and this year the theme of the Quality Month was “Transcom World”. We prepared a map with locations of all Transcom sites marked on it and each team was then randomly assigned a Transcom site. Every week teams received points according to how good they did on their KPI targets. Each week the teams also had additional assignments; to create their own contact centre logo, their own mission and vision, to make a regional analysis in terms of the regional call centre market, to prepare a proposal to a potential customer etc.

By using their earned points, the teams were able to buy areas of the world map, and “expand their base of clients” or market. The team that had most territory after a month won the campaign.

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Outstanding customer experience can only be achieved through engaged and highly motivated employees and Transcom’s Quality Month has a proven track record of getting it done. It is for these particular reasons that our Quality Month was awarded 2nd place in the Lithuanian HR association’s national Best Practice competition!

It’s a great pleasure to be noticed and awarded, but most of all we hope that our competitors learned something valuable from us as well, because we found their ideas and practices very useful and inspirational.  It is all about sharing, but it’s also great to deliver an employer branding initiative that is ranked so high!

Author: César Mesa

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The voice is the first telemarketing tool

Some people perceive telemarketing as an annoying sales technique. To them it’s nothing but a non-requested call made from a contact center in order to sell a product in an unexpected moment to an unknown customer.  In fact, it is commonly accepted that telemarketers mechanically read a script to offer a particular product. But I want to talk about our outbound business from the Transcom perspective. We follow a non-intrusive, well-structured strategy, and we handle each call with the utmost respect for the consumer. There is, of course, a sales argument prepared to capture the customer’s attention quickly and to expose, briefly, the product’s main benefits. Conducted by well-prepared professionals, it is a sales tool that performs very well even in a difficult economic context such as this. However, as all commercial approaches, telemarketing has its own ‘moments of truth’, with the added difficulty of not being able to rely on nonverbal communication; we must focus our effort in how to handle the initial contact.

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To connect with another person over the phone, we can only count on our auditory perception; the only tool that the telemarketer has to keep the customer’s attention during the first seconds of communication is his/her voice. Deprived of eye contact, the agent needs to engage in active listening, paying attention to what and how his/her interlocutor expresses. Any nuance in the voice tone can be decisive and can help reveal our customer’s motivation to buy our product. We should try to ‘tune in’ to the client as quickly as possible. To do this we must adapt our voice to our interlocutor, using key words or phrases that help us to inspire confidence and the utmost respect for our client’s time, even proposing to postpone the call to a more suitable time if necessary. Seeing as a strong voice tone might seem aggressive and create resistance, we prefer to use an interrogative and neutral tone to handle any possible objections our client may offer. Having gained the attention of our talker, it is essential to be clear about our sales goal and structure the call in order to transmit our message in the best possible way. So in addition to making a good product explanation, we have opted to avoid long calls that might risk losing the client’s attention. Once we have reached this point, the persuasiveness and commercial techniques of each agent will play a main role. Regardless of having achieved our goal or not, we will always finish our call appreciating the time that our customer has spent with us, ending with a cordial farewell in order to leave a good memory.

Author: Walter Spadoni

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What makes a company great is the customer service it offers

Today, businesses in all sectors continue to invest more and more in their Customer Service. Products and their characteristics (quality, price and distribution channel) are no longer the focus of attention of boards or directors. What makes the difference is the customer care as perceived by users when they interact with the company and its front line staff.

I think that there is nothing more important and business-critical in any company than customer service. All organizations that operate in a competitive market will lose clients and money if they ignore this fundamental rule for too long. Let’s look at the example of a multinational like McDonald’s, that spends almost two billion dollars a year in advertising. The fast food giant has recently admitted that 20% of complaints are about “bad service” and that the main reason for customers not returning is attributable to “impolite or unprofessional service staff”.

But this rule is applicable to any sector. And this is why more and more entrepreneurs are trying to come up with new ways to improve their relationship between front line personnel and customers.

The CEO of one of America’s largest banks recently sent a letter to its more than 270,000 employees, begging them to improve their relationship with the bank’s  customers. It is clear that even a zero-charge current account generating three percent interest loses its shine if you have to deal with personnel who are impolite, inattentive and unhelpful.

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What every company needs to do is to involve and empower the staff that is in direct contact with customers, as they play a crucial role in the health of the entire organization. It is important to share the commercial strategy being pursued by the company with all personnel, informing them about priorities and objectives, but also trusting front line personnel and giving them the resources to manage valuable customer relationships with greater awareness and independence.

By doing so, various enlightened organizations have made it possible for employees to resolve their customers’ problems more quickly and anticipate their unexpressed needs. These companies have understood that the most interesting and useful information about customers’ preferences, leaving expensive market research exercises aside, can be obtained from the people who communicate with them every day (in branch offices, on the phone, in chat rooms, by email, on Facebook, or in any other way). And that reducing the hierarchical distance between front line and top management, i.e. encouraging the exchange of opinions and proposals from the bottom up, is the first step to guarantee a memorable Customer Experience for users and a healthy-looking future for the company.

Amazon - where at meetings CEO Jeff Bezos has made a habit of placing an empty chair at the table to represent the “Customer’s voice” – actively encourages employees to try out new ideas based on their intimate knowledge about Customers. Innovations like “Customers also bought” tips were originally proposals put forward by new recruits. The function that includes users’ purchasing history and behavior in all searches, and drove a three percent increase in turnover, was implemented by an intern.

Zara, the Spanish fashion company, receives daily reports from store managers about qualitative observations and quantitative data to improve the company’s understanding of what customers want. Shop assistants chat with customers every day, exploring what they want and asking questions like “What other colors would you like this blouse to be available in?” and “What if this skirt were longer?”. This has enabled Zara to reduce the number of new articles it introduces which customers don’t like to one percent (the sector average is almost ten percent), although it offers almost ten times as many products as its main competitors.

Providing a unique and memorable Customer Experience is the most pressing objective of all organizations today, and the companies that excel in this area know how to obtain the best possible results from their front line:

  • They invest heavily in training the people who are in contact with customers
  • They motivate and involve them by asking for feedback and suggestions
  • They promote leadership among their most talented collaborators
  • They ensure they have the tools needed to manage Customer relationships independently and expertly.

As a result, customers are pleased, stay loyal to the brand and talk about it in positive terms to their friends; creating a virtuous spiral that makes everyone happy.

Making our teammates aware of the importance of the front line contributes not only to providing an excellent customer experience to customers, but also to keep them motivated.

At Transcom, we manage millions of customer contacts every day, and thanks to our valuable front line staff and our tools, we are capable of collecting and analyzing customer feedback and making the intelligence available to our clients.

Author: Fidel Rodríguez

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How Master Class programs improve customer service and increase sales

Good teamwork implies that everybody can learn from his or her teammates, jointly creating and delivering an extraordinary service to our clients. That’s why Transcom San Fernando has developed training programs where the best agents in terms of performance can share their experiences with all colleagues so that they won’t just achieve their objectives, but also reach higher sales figures:

“We know that you are good, but we also know you can be better! That is why we have prepared the… Master class!!!”

One of our master classes at Transcom San Fernando

These training courses, named ‘Master Class’, are led by experienced and successful sales agents who share their knowledge about best practices with the participants. During these 60 sessions, we covered the hardest customer objection cases we have found in our daily work, with the ‘Master’ offering new approaches to addressing said objections based on his or her experience. In this way, participants learned new tools to overcome possible barriers and achieve better sales results.

Once we analyzed the pilot program and the obtained output, we decided to extend the program to all agents in the same situation, certain that with this little push they will be able to reach new objectives. In fact, since we launched the Master Class program, we have improved our sales ratio by fifty percent.

Author: Hartmut Jaschok

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Creating customer experience through effective recruiting

Customer service is the backbone of Transcom, and our customer service specialists are at the front line, creating outstanding customer experiences every day. Having the right people on our teams is imperative to success. Together with our recruiting outsourcing partner in Germany, we have devised a new way of attracting the best candidates for a major global client. Being a global company, we were able to leverage good practices from other parts of our organization, especially from our colleagues in the Netherlands in this case.

Literacy tests are one important component of the recruiting strategy we created to attract and select highly talented and educated applicants. An appropriate level of literacy skills is essential to providing a high service level to our global client’s customers. By hiring people who are not just “looking for a job”, we were able to quickly build a top-quality workforce, that was able to reach the targets in the first month of operation.

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Being able to identify an adequate number of high-caliber applicants is critical to building a high-performing workforce. Success depends on continuously improving our recruiting practices, with the objective of attracting the most talented customer service representatives, and then making sure that they stay highly motivated and choose to build a career at Transcom.

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To motivate our people and stress our team spirit, we put in place many activities.

We also try to create a friendly atmosphere outside of working hours. One example is our new Dragon boat Team in Rostock!

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