A growing consumer finance company came to us to help control contact center costs as they scaled their business. Their problem; to service the increasing number of customers, they relied on an expanding roster of outsourced contact center vendors worldwide. Otherwise known as BPOs or Business Process Outsourcers, it can be a cost-efficient method for quickly scaling up customer service operations. However, since these types of vendors charge by the minute, as the business grows, so do the billable minutes. The issues began to stack up:
- Contact center costs were becoming unsustainable.
- Self-service IVR was inconsistent across the multiple providers.
- Contact center vendors are paid by the minute and are not motivated to optimize self-service for callers.
As their communications conduit, we became their single source of self-service automation across all contact center vendors. We collaborated on a series of custom IVR solutions designed to deflect calls from the contact centers to self-service. The results below outline the cost savings and efficiencies we achieved by working together to get the results they needed.
Direct Mail Automation
As part of its growth strategy, the company sends out millions of pre-qualified consumer credit offers every month by direct mail. As a result, tens of thousands of recipients call every month to confirm qualification and begin creating their new accounts. With the typical cost of servicing these types of calls through the contact center vendors billed by the minute, the company had to limit the number of mailers every month. At their current pace, the annual contact center cost exceeded $2 million, a number that limited their growth potential.
We worked together to introduce self-service automation into the screening and confirmation process of potential new customers. We were able to help the company reduce the cost of calls by deflecting the majority to a self-service IVR, resulting in an annual savings of more than 80%. This cost reduction provided them with the ability to scale monthly mailers an additional 50%, a massive boost in new customer acquisition efforts.
New Card Activation
Now that their customer base is growing, so does the cost of activating new credit cards. And with the freedom to scale new customer efforts, we looked at introducing self-service efficiencies into their new card activation process. Once new customers are approved, they receive their new cards in 5-7 days. The cost of activating these cards was approaching $100,000 a month, using the contact centers.
After introducing self-serve automation into the activation process, we reduced the monthly costs by another 80%. Combined with the new customer outreach efficiencies, these two self-service strategies provided a total annual savings of over $2 million, so far.
The company’s credit cardholders often call in for basic information such as payment due, payment amount, available credit, balance, and more. Their contact center vendors averaged $1.50 for these types of calls. With an average of 90,000 of these kinds of customer questions every month, they were staring down a $1.6 million annual cost.
While not every lookup call of these types is suitable for self-service, most are. We worked with the company to review all the types of lookup calls and design a self-service game plan. After implementing the new service option, most callers opted for self-service, reducing costs by over 80%, or $1.3 million. Combined with the customer outreach and onboarding efficiencies, we now see a total of $3.3 million in annual savings.
Credit Line Increase Requests
Many customers call to request an increase in available credit. By integrating an automated IVR application with the consumer finance company’s decision engine, callers can self-serve these requests. By deflecting these calls away from the contact center vendors and their agents, the company reduced the costs of servicing these requests by nearly 80%.
Automated Payments By Phone
The company receives over 90,000 calls per month from customers with delinquent balances. Live agents required an average of six minutes to accept and process a customer’s payment, representing an annual cost of nearly $3 million. And as new customer outreach and activation continues, that cost will rise quickly.
We integrated our Compass Automation Platform’s payment application with their payment gateway to accept automated IVR payments. Once implemented, nearly half of all payment calls were deflected to the automated payment IVR, an annual cost reduction of 45%.
Self-Service IVR Fuels Growth
With these new efficiencies in place, the company has realized over $4 million in annual savings. Opening opportunities to scale new product offerings, increase marketing, and deploy new customer service efficiencies and initiatives. “Follow the sun” call routing provides better customer service and cost savings by routing calls during local daytime hours to global contact centers. And texting callers with a link to their mobile app has increased adoption by 20%.
Your Engagement Conduit
We are the Engagement Conduit that enables extraordinary experiences between companies and their customers. Our Compass Automation Platform is a Managed CPaaS (communications platform as a service) that integrates your disparate systems for self-service automation that delivers on the promise of gold-standard customer service. And as a nimble CPaaS, creating integrated custom IVR deployments is no longer complicated. Contact us to learn how we can become your engagement conduit.