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itel Ramps Hospitality Client’s CX Operations Over 30% in 90 Days

September 22, 2022

For many years, itel has supported one of the largest and fastest growing hospitality brands in the world, supplying inbound voice customer care and reservation services for both their regular and VIP guests. During peak travel season, this client experiences sudden surges in call volumes that require them to scale their customer support by over 30%. In only 90 days, itel increased their agent headcount from 400 full-time equivalents (FTEs) to over 1,000, achieving an average customer satisfaction score (CSAT) of 4.7 out of 5 stars, even during one of their busiest times. 

This seasonal influx of bookings required a massive scale of this client’s operations. To ramp to the required numbers, itel embarked on an aggressive hiring campaign across four of its key locations, including Saint Lucia, Guyana, and Jamaica’s Montego Bay and Kingston. Starting in January, several strategic recruitment initiatives were deployed. 

Within 90 days, we had 1,100 new agents in production and in March, when the client requested even more seats, we were able to recruit an added 160 agents in under two weeks, bringing the total ramp headcount to almost 1,300 FTEs.  

Meeting the client’s speed to proficiency timeline of 60 days meant running concurrent training classes, both day and night. To free up physical training spaces, we reorganized some of our regular agent classes across several sites, and temporarily switched other agents to remote work using our secure work-at-home platform.  

In situations where in-person training was not possible, virtual training programs helped us fill in the gaps. We also redeployed resources from other non-competing business units that were experiencing low volumes and retrained agents to serve this hospitality account.

The Goals: 

  • Aid client with seasonal ramp by scaling CX operations over 30% 
  • Recruit an initial 1,100 new seasonal agents within 90 days 
  • Recruit an additional 160 agents within 2 weeks 
  • Agent speed to proficiency target of 60 days (includes onboarding, training, and nesting phases) 
  • Maintain KPI (key performance indicator) performance goals throughout ramp

 

The Approach: 

  • Aggressive hiring campaigns across sites in 4 key geos 
  • Strategic recruitment initiatives to encourage more applicants 
  • Concurrent training classes run both daytime and evening  
  • In-house training supplemented by virtual learning when needed (training includes brand acculturation, customer support and sales skills) 
  • Operations supervisors brought in to support training initiatives and increase class capacity 
  • Using work-at-home teams to take the pressure off on-site facilities   

The Results: 

  • Increased total agent headcount from 400 standing seats to over 1,000 FTEs within 90 days 
  • Recruited an extra 160 FTEs upon client request, in less than 2 weeks 
  • A total of almost 1,300 FTEs added to seasonal ramp 
  • Attained 60-day speed to proficiency target 
  • Achieved an overall CSAT score of between 4.5-4.8-stars out of 5 
  • In some business lines, exceeded sales conversion targets by up to 10% 

It is this ability to quickly and successfully scale in large numbers that has led us to claim the top position as this client’s number one customer experience delivery partner.  

Our comprehensive recruitment process, training programs, and brand acculturation practices ensure that new seasonal agents are carefully blended into existing teams, so that customers enjoy a consistent and seamless customer experience, regardless of seasonality.  

Tight production timelines and benchmarks were met, without any loss or compromise of quality or performance. Even during the busiest periods of the ramp, our teams were able to achieve a consistent overall CSAT score of 4.5-4.8-stars out of 5, and in some business lines, we exceeded sales conversion targets by up to 10%.  

Now, this globally recognized hospitality brand can navigate ramp season with the confidence that they have the necessary customer support staff with the aptitudes and skills to consistently deliver an exceptionally rewarding customer experience.  

Uncover why the nearshore is an ideal CX destination for hospitality and travel brands.

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