The Contact Centre

Digital transformation is about creating customer value.

A group of old friends regularly get together in my local Starbucks.

One member expressed how livid he was with Bell Canada. A 50-year customer, his complaint was that he could not understand the service agent.

Bell outsources call centre services around the globe and the lack of an accent is a hit or miss depending on where the outsourced call centre is located.

Bell in 2017 reportedly spent $67M on wireless customer retention. Since most Canadians own a mobile phone, the bad service received for home phone inquiry no doubt impacted Bell Mobility.

Infuriating a long-term customer is not what customer retention is about. The customer could have phoned Bell’s Loyalty department. at 1-800 328-2123-3

From a technical perspective, the solution is rather simple. Currently, agents are assigned to service a call according to the skills required to service the call and the skill possessed by the agent. For language, two skills will be required:

1. Language Skill.
Will require two skills – one for French and One for English
2. Language Proficiency Skill
Highest rating is assigned to a native English or French speaker.

Key changes actions:
1. Update Bell’s customer service skills-based call routing model to include an English language service profile.  score for each agent. Native English speakers rank the highest.

2. Assign the required proficiency score policy to each customer. Our coffee club member would be only assigned a native English-speaking agent. French not required.

3. Update the call routing logic once the caller’s language policy is known, the next available agent with the required language policy. Various options such as waiting for a native English speaker or assigning the call to the next most qualified agent are available to handle the case when no agents are available.

4. The model could be as well used for supporting French callers by assigning native Quebecois agents to the call.

5. Update third party call handling contracts to upgrade the quality of English spoken by their agents.

The English language issue is no doubt but one case where a simple tweak to the all routing model can achieve positive customer value generating results.