Consumer champion Which? is to revamp the technology that supports its customer services operations, replacing an Alcatel system with an Avaya telephony platform with integrated voice recording from Verint.
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Which? contact centre manager Paul Simpson (pictured) said the move would improve the company's ability to complete incoming customer communications via voice, web and e-mail. He expected the new system to pay for itself in a year.
Which? presently handles some two million voice calls and 250,000 e-mails a year. These volumes are expected to rise as consumers seek advice on how to get better value for money, he said.
Simpson said Which? runs different teams to deal with e-mail and voice calls and subject specialities. The new system will allow the charity to integrate the teams, improving the efficiency with which it delivers services to callers.
Systems integrator Sabio will install the system over a weekend to minimise business disruption. Simpson said it will support 100 seats at Which?'s contact centre in Hertford and 25 phones at the company's London head office, as well as a 30-seat disaster recovery site at head office.
The next step will be to integrate the customer contact system with Hilda, the firm's home-grown membership system, Simpson said.
The Avaya Communications Manager platform also supports voice-over-internet-protocol (VoIP). In the future, customers will be able to call Which? from a computer using Skype or other web chat facilities.
Simpson said the voice recording facility was likely to be useful to Which?'s legal advice team. "We'll keep records for five years so that we and our members can refer to the advice given by our lawyers via our dedicated legal service," he said.