Providing 950 million litres of water each day to a population of more than 3.6 million, Affinity Water is the largest water-only supplier in the UK and is on a mission to deliver personalised customer experiences that matter to their communities.
We caught up with Luke Sambridge, Head of Customer Strategy and Experience to find out how Affinity Water’s 250+ seat contact centre was able to scale communications and reduce response times during lockdown, without turning off a single channel.
Solving the Puzzel
At the beginning of March 2020, CCaaS powered contact centres around the world were able to make a quick switch to remote working in response to COVID-19. Affinity Water successfully transitioned to fully remote working in under a week.
Within that first week, Affinity Water knew they had to create a strategy that supported the change in their customers’ needs. They started by looking at their customer journeys and tweaking them to make it easy for people to get what they needed quickly and without closing down any channels.
Success beyond voice
“We could have closed down channels if we wanted to, however, we were aware that our customer needs had totally changed. So rather than worrying about what channels we were going to close down, we started by looking at our pool of customers and created a messaging campaign to proactively reach out to explain what to expect, how they could self-serve themselves and contact us.”
“We created tailored emails for each customer pool. For example, we knew it would have a financial impact for already stretched families and those on furlough within our supply area. We came up with a plan to ensure that people were aware of our financial support scheme.”
“For the elderly and those who are on our priority services register, our advanced care team reached out by contacting customers via voice to make sure they were all okay. We knew there would be some people that were panicked and who would want a more personal conversation.”
Luke went on to explain how much of a success the strategy was and how they saw resolution time decrease from five days to three. “It wouldn’t have been possible if we didn’t have Puzzel’s Omni-channel solution in place!”, Luke explained.
Agent wellbeing – the bricks and water
For Affinity Water, employee engagement is just as important to them as their customers. Luke explained the importance of communicating with their contact centre colleagues throughout the pandemic.
“We communicated a lot with our agents. Our mental first aiders were on hand if anyone was feeling a little low or weren’t coping well. We also had virtual team briefs and coffee mornings, whereby it was more of an informal session where people could chat and socialise.”
“Puzzel helped tremendously in terms of agent wellbeing. It gave the management teams a clear understanding of what’s happening within their agent’s day. You can see if any of our agents are working towards burnout, if we have any issues, or if we have any hotspots that we need to address.”
Success for all
Affinity Water were able to react at speed, take care of their customers and protect their call centre team. Luke highlights that using Puzzel enabled him to focus on setting the right strategy rather than worrying about the logistics of moving to homeworking. The exciting news is that productivity levels shot through the roof – performance in their contact centre during and since lockdown is now the highest they’ve ever seen.
Don’t just take Affinity Water’s word for it. Puzzel’s complete omni-channel contact centre solution enables increased productivity, closer customer contact and improved service levels. If you are looking for a provider that can help you build your next generation contact centre, book in your free custom demo today.