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Transcom Italia wins Customer Relationship Management Award

Process innovation increases customer satisfaction and improves the operating efficiency of Lastminute.com services

Transcom Italia has been assigned the 2016 best Customer Relationship Management award by a panel of experts from the CMMC Club, the association for companies and service providers working in the client relations supply chain. For CMMC, the award is a way to promote businesses that stand out, in a particularly complicated period for the sector, for the excellence of the initiatives put in place to improve their organization, in terms of both financial results and the internal climate among associates, by developing partnership relationships and innovating customer relationship processes.

The reasons for the award

In 2016, Transcom identified several areas for optimization in the customer assistance processes of leading online travel operator Lastminute.com, for which it has been managing customer care activities since 2015, in a dozen or so languages. In partnership with Datachronic, a company that specializes in Robotic Process Automation (RPA) solutions to improve the efficiency of corporate procedures, Transcom has introduced several process automation measures for Lastminute.com services. A new web platform has been developed to automatically dispatch back office activities to the first agent available on the basis of the Client’s real priorities. The dispatching platform includes an integrated, user friendly web interface that provides real time checking of all the fields entered manually by the operator. In practice, it acts as an “Automatic Checker” for booking data, guaranteeing that the Lastminute.com system is aligned with airline websites, for example, across all stages in the booking process. If any discrepancies are detected, the system suggests corrections.

Last September, Lastminute.com also decided to introduce the “Transcom Quality Centre”, a system that collects and classifies all quality monitoring results to analyze the points of strength and areas for improvement of each project, team or individual operator. This proprietary Transcom solution provides a quick way to introduce continuous improvement measures, which are essential in such a dynamic and constantly evolving sector.

“All these Transcom’s initiatives have delivered tangible results, with even higher levels of customer satisfaction, more efficient contact management and reduced operating costs,” said Lastminute.com group Operations Manager Giorgio Bonafini. This award truly crowns our partnership.”

“We are extremely proud of this award and I would like to thank my team, our client Lastminute.com and Datachronic for their contributions to obtaining this acknowledgement,” said Transcom General Manager for Central and Southern Europe Gianluca Gemma. “At a time when there is much talk about technological innovation, virtualization and robotics applied to customer relations, we are convinced that operating efficiency can also be achieved through process innovation, by studying solutions to make the human relationship with end users more effective and improve the quality of our agents’ work.”

 

On the left, TRANSCOM represented by Global Account Manager Debora Mendola and General Manager, Central and Southern Europe Gianluca Gemma; on the right, lastminute.com group Operations Director Giorgio Bonafini

On the left, TRANSCOM represented by Global Account Manager Debora Mendola and General Manager, Central and Southern Europe Gianluca Gemma; on the right, lastminute.com group Operations Director Giorgio Bonafini

 

Transcom successfully handles peak traffic in 11 countries for an international client

Flexibility, scalability and technology at our clients’ service

Not so long ago, one of our clients, a leading manufacturer of household appliances, asked us to submit a proposal to manage a peak in customer care traffic for several weeks in 11 European countries. The client in question had to recall and replace a defective product of which about 10,000 had been sold throughout Europe. The communication campaign was expected to generate a peak in the number of calls in France, Spain, Portugal, the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Austria, Italy, Denmark, Norway, Sweden and Finland.

An international task force, coordinated from Italy, was set up and immediately went to work. The proposal didn’t take long to finalize, and involved various Transcom sites in six countries: Sweden, Germany, Italy, Tunisia, the Netherlands and Spain. The Transcom technology infrastructure is based on a centralized data center, making it possible to coordinate the management of customer care activities for 11 different markets, switch telephone calls to our sites throughout Europe and cover all the languages needed.

This innovative organizational model, based on flexibility, language skills, scalability and technology fully convinced and satisfied our client. In fact, the solution allowed rapid ramp-up and ramp-down times, thus enabling the company to optimize communication campaign timing in the target countries. Transcom implemented the centralized IVR platform for all markets and assembled the necessary resources in record time: in the space of just one week, over 200 agents were selected from those available in all the Transcom sites involved.

After special training, these customer care specialists provided consumers with instructions to guarantee the safety of each and every product by means of either technical adjustment or replacement. The project, which was initially planned to run for 10 weeks, is still underway and Transcom continues to work with the client to ensure the best possible assistance and contact experience for all its European users.

This emergency plan was seamlessly integrated with the regular customer assistance services we have been managing since August 2015 for the same client from our multilingual centers in Budapest, Danzica, Olsztyn and Porto, where our customer experience specialists guarantee the provision of a high-quality customer service to consumers in 20 countries: Germany, Poland, The Netherlands, Belgium, Norway, Czech Republic, Spain, Portugal, Hungary, Sweden, Denmark, Slovakia, Austria, Finland, Bulgaria, Greece, Croatia, France, Lithuania and Romania.

The Internet of Things changes the dynamics of the Customer Experience

The Internet of Things (IoT) has been a hot topic for some time now and we are increasingly surrounded by smart devices and objects that can communicate with each other and with the user. Some examples? Training shoes that connect to smartwatches and smartphones, providing detailed information about the wearer’s sporting performance. The watch that activates your wake-up alarm earlier than usual if there’s heavy traffic on the way to work. Interconnected cars that slow down automatically if there’s an accident ahead. Hotel room doors you open with your smartphone, without needing to collect the key from front desk.

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All market analysts and observers are forecasting exponential growth for the Internet of Things. Intel has analyzed the IoT scenario, reporting that 15 billion objects were connected to the internet in 2015 and estimating that this figure will reach 200 billion devices in 2020.

We are therefore witnessing the birth of a new frontier for the interconnection between people’s physical lives and digital worlds. It isn’t hard to imagine that the Internet of Things will have a strong and lasting impact on various industrial sectors, as well as on our everyday lives. This connectivity looks set to change the operating model applied by contact centers and revolutionize forever what is increasingly a digital customer experience.

A new model of customer care

If this trend continues, there will be a revolution in customer care activities too in the years ahead. With the Leonardo 2.0.14 innovation lab, Transcom is setting its sights on the future, by analyzing opportunities and empowering technology to create advanced contact center solutions and perfect the customer experience in the era of the Internet of Things.

As an example, the research lab is now focusing its attention on the new devices we can use to connect with contact centers. The telephone is no longer the only contact channel, but also cars, refrigerators, televisions, alarm clocks, shoes, keys, the washing machine… Another area of analysis is the transition from classic customer care to “proactive” assistance, in which smart objects use the data they continuously share to notify operating malfunctions by themselves and trigger operator calls to the owner. If our shoes realize we’re running too much for our profile, the contact center makes a proactive call to tell us to take a break. If the alarm rings early because there’s heavy traffic, we can activate the contact center to book a taxi, which calls us back on our mobile phone. If the washing machine breaks down, it can activate a call to the technical assistance service, which performs tests and then calls us back to help troubleshoot the issue. If our car moves but we aren’t in it, the contact center warns us, helps us activate the alarm systems and provides support.

The customer care operator can therefore display all pertinent information about the product requiring support, analyzing it and providing remote assistance like a doctor reading a patient’s clinical records. Likewise, the operator can display the geographical location of the customer or productin such a way as to provide logistics and delivery support, as well as the time and place of arrival of the customer and the product/service at their destination. Last, but by no means least, the operator will also have access to information about the customer’s preferences and habits, and so be able to offer targeted product/service support that is aligned with expectations and areas of interest.

All told, the Internet of Things really does seem to be one of the most important and promising of recent developments, increasing the quality of life for all of us in ways that are hard to predict.

Author: Tanja Lohrmann

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A cross-country coaching project raises the level of customer satisfaction reported in multilingual contact centers

Transcom is a multinational company with a major global presence and offices in 21 countries on five continents. We offer customer care, sales and technical assistance services in 33 languages.  In Europe, we have several specialist multilingual hubs, including in Budapest, Gdansk, Olsztyn, Belgrade and Riga. Each and every day, our highly qualified customer experience professionals make every effort to create the best possible contact experience for users of every nationality. But to put customers at ease and make them feel that they are fully understood, language fluency is not enough on its own.

It is equally essential to be empathetic and able to interact using the most appropriate idioms and the most effective interpersonal approach, which depends exclusively on the cultural background in each individual country. To develop this knowledge and these skills, we can draw on Transcom’s extensive global presence. We have therefore organized cross-country coaching sessions, inviting expert native speakers to teach multilingual hub teams about the cultural peculiarities of the countries in which users live, in such a way that their contact experience is an even more enjoyable one.

Last summer, for example, we organized a collaboration project between the Rostock (Germany) and Riga (Latvia) sites to help the Riga team improve the level of customer satisfaction. The contact center in Riga provides customer care services in many languages, including German, for an important European bank. The German team in Riga has excellent language skills, but despite this, the customer satisfaction levels measured did not fully meet the standards set by the client. Transcom implemented a fast and effective solution: it was decided to send an expert team leader who is a native German speaker from Rostock to Riga to work alongside the German language team.

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Sascha is the German team leader who flew to Riga to coach the Latvian team

An in-depth quality analysis was performed by listening to calls, revealing some areas for improvement in terms of the language conventions used by various operators during conversations with German customers.

The German team leader worked in close contact with his Latvian colleagues to fill these gaps. He trained the agents involved during special classroom workshops and worked alongside them one by one during calls. At the end of the coaching sessions, a list of “dos and don’ts” when dealing with German customers was prepared and shared with the entire team. As a result of the coaching activities, the Latvian team gained greater sensitivity and awareness about certain cultural peculiarities typical of customers with a German background, e.g. finding the right balance between expressions of courtesy and active listening signals. The reasons for the call are now clearly summarized at the outset to avoid misunderstandings. In addition, effective phrases and formulations have been developed to manage more complex interactions that might evolve into an escalation.

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The team leaders (on the left) and some of the operators who took part in the Riga coaching project

The collaboration between the Rostock and Riga sites will continue in the future. This brief cross-country coaching project has already brought huge benefits to all the subjects involved, and first and foremost to our customers. We work incessantly to improve our services and the customer experience we offer. Our huge global network of contact centers allows us to share knowledge and experiences that help our clients improve their business results.

Author: Philip Sköld

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Innovation in all channels

The rapid digital transformation affects all industries. With more products and more complex services, the demands are increasing for a flexible customer service that can serve all channels on the customer’s terms. At the same time, the customer experience itself has become an increasingly important way for companies to differentiate from the competition.

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More and more customer interactions take place in digital channels. Digitalization is leading us into a new phase where customer service and the customer experience become even more important. This shift is happening quickly. One fourth of Transcom’s turnover is related to non-voice activities, and that number will only increase. We serve customers regardless of channel. And the customer has to have the same great experience, irrespective of whether it is over the phone, chat, email or some other channel.

Transcom is working actively toghether with our clients to come up with new innovations, like implementing smarter technical solutions or simplifying and speeding up processes while also educating and developing our staff. I invite you to read more about the solutions we are developing with our clients in the Hello Transcom magazine.

Transcom Color Run for Fun 2016

Bacolod Color Run

The most colorful event just made it to Transcom Philippines – Transcom Color Run for Fun 2016. A three-part race that happened last May started in Bacolod on May 14, followed by Iloilo the next weekend – May 24; finally getting to Metro Manila last May 29. More than 4,000 employees of Transcom coming from its 5 sites (Bacolod, Iloilo, Mandaluyong (EDSA), Pasig and ROHQ) participated in this grand event.

In initiating this run, Transcom aimed to engage employees and unite them in pursuit of a singular goal– in this case, being healthy. Transcom promotes healthy living and wellness among its employees, and this run was a great start for this campaign. Since Transcom puts much value in family, friends and family members of employees were welcomed to the event

Each participant was given a kit which included a race shirt, a race bib, sunshades, a sweat band, a string bag, a water jug, temporary tattoos, and of course the colored powders!

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Before the gun start, our dear sponsors and partners prepared tons of freebies as giveaways for the participants. Security Bank gave away free ice cream in scoops, an energy drink company gave-away free samples to help the runners stay refreshed. There were lots of biscuits, sweets and even some lozenges. Right before the run, Zumba sessions helped the participants warm up and stretch.

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Splashes of colors were everywhere – on the streets and on the runners. Getting all colored too were the members of the Philippine Volcanoes who joined the Manila Leg. Happy, sweaty and colored runners came back in less than an hour and enjoyed food and refreshments plus music from the invited DJ’s.

The race was categorized into a 3K and a 5K run. Winners of each leg received cash prizes worth:

  • 3K run

    • 1st Finisher – PHP 5,000H

    • 2nd Finisher – PHP 2,500

    • 3rd Finisher – PHP 1,500

  • 5K run

    • 1st Finisher – PHP 10,000

    • 2nd Finisher – PHP 7,000

    • 3rd Finisher – PHP 5,000

The prizes were not limited to the race winners. Transcom also hosted raffle draws wherein all participants had a chance to win gift certificates, hotel accommodations and gadgets!

Employees really enjoyed the run and had so much fun.  Happy smiles filled the venue and posts they uploaded on Social Media showed their unique perspective on the event.

(edited by: Ginnie Faustino-Galgana)