Cheshire Peaks and Plains Housing Trust has replaced its ageing telephony system with a IP-based system from Mitel, with the project planning and implementation carried out by Britannic Technologies.
The impetus for the change to the Mitel system was Cheshire Peaks’ need to view the performance of its 24-hour call centre and deliver statistics on live and historic call traffic so that call centre staff could be assigned to coincide with peaks and troughs in call volumes. Cheshire Peaks also wanted to enhance the visibility of vulnerable callers if they were held in a queue and offer customers a call-back function during busy periods.
The Mitel 3300 IP telephony platform selected by Britannic is intended to provide a foundation for the future development of Cheshire Peaks’ services. The call centre solution includes both historic and live management reporting, call back and position in queue.
Simon Penaluna, assistant director of ICT, Cheshire Peaks and Plains Housing Trust, said, “The NGN [non-geographic number] statistics have also helped us recruit staff for our peak times. We have seen a big improvement in our call handling with approximately 85 per cent of calls now answered within 20 seconds.”
Britannic also delivered a range of network services as part of the managed solution, including the management and call distribution of the primary 0800 contact number, the introduction of a next-generation network link for combined voice and data usage and SIP Trunking.
Britannic’s installed Oak call management software and ComputerTel call recording to provide clear views of relevant statistics and have helped to improve staff training and development in the contact centre.
Penaluna said, “We have seen a 50 per cent reduction in costs associated with our 0800 number and have benefited from increased control around our business continuity planning. Furthermore, BT used to charge for changes to our routing whereas Britannic provides them free as part of its service.
“Britannic delivered excellent value for money by consolidating our internet and ISDN lines into a single managed Ethernet circuit. This has delivered savings of more than 50 per cent on rental charges and reduced our call charges as well.”
Cheshire Peaks reported that the new system has resulted in improved customer service by allowing customers to know where they are in the queue and the expected time of answer, a faster response with calls now answered on average within 12 seconds compared with 60 seconds previously, and better management reporting and analytical tools.
The Mitel system paves the way for future developments, such as Britannic’s CTI links into Cheshire Peaks’ CRM system for web collaboration. In the immediate future, Cheshire Peaks plans to conduct customer satisfaction surveys through outbound calling, ensuring that its call-centre staff are always fully utilised.