World Vision is the world’s largest children’s humanitarian aid charity. Founded in 1950 by Bob Pierce as a Christian relief and development organisation, it is active in more than 60 countries with total revenues including grants, product and foreign donations of $2.79 billion.
World Vision’s Director of Organisational Effectiveness felt that the Charity’s communications could be improved. Realising that he didn’t have the necessary time, resources or expertise in-house, he invited Auditel for exploratory talks to assess what could be achieved.
Review of Mobiles
Following those discussions, he asked Auditel Specialist Paul Foster to provide an independent assessment of World Vision’s overall communications needs in the UK, starting with an immediate requirement to renew their mobile phones contract.
Auditel reviewed World Vision’s communication needs and in conjunction with their IT team the decision was made to consolidate the supply chain and look for innovation.
Paul explains: “Our aim was to immediately increase World Vision’s importance initially to all existing suppliers, but ultimately to strengthen our negotiating position and reduce the number of suppliers. Each supplier saw this as an opportunity for growth and the mobiles contract was renewed by Auditel at less than half World Vision’s previous tariff.”
This huge early success helped to build trust and confidence in Auditel’s abilities. In fact, World Vision was so impressed that the relationship grew rapidly into other areas including Fixed Line Communications, which quickly evolved into World Vision’s UK based call centre.
Fixed Line Communications
Rob Andrew, an Auditel telecommunications specialist, was now brought in to conduct a full audit and analysis of the current system and World Vision’s future requirements. At the same time a new Head of ICT & Operations was appointed by World Vision, whose collaborative approach to all key stakeholders including IT, marketing and switchboard operators ensured that all parties contributed to a successful outcome.
The chosen supplier, World Vision UK’s communications partner of choice, was invited to develop the plan further and conducted client visits to various vendors. This strategic relationship has already transformed communications, and will continue to do so, for supporters, staff and the needy children and their families, along with the wider communities who all benefit from a better future created through World Vision’s great work.
World Vision’s UK Based Call Centre – The Challenges
The need to improve World Vision’s Fixed Line communications became clear as Auditel’s analysis of their everyday needs, in particular with regard to the UK based Call Centre, threw up some interesting challenges.
- Remote working – There was no facility for remote working and no integration with IBM (Lotus) Notes to benefit from the database of users. In addition it wasn’t possible for call handlers to tell whether staff were in or out, in meetings or free to take a call.
- Cover on reception – It was difficult to provide cover on reception. The stand-in was faced with the choice of staying in their office and having limited capability or sitting in reception away from their work.
- Low tech scheduling – Call centre agents based their scheduling on experience rather than historical data and predictive analysis, so not surprisingly the overflow calls which were being diverted to an outsourced agency delivered lower quality results than those answered in house.
- Limited reporting – There was also only limited reporting done and very little feedback being provided on how effective individual campaigns were. There was no digital media integration with the call centre and marketing were left handling emails and social media.
- Multiple Vendors – The ageing phone systems were in need of a significant upgrade to remain supported. Teleconferencing had become difficult and unreliable and with five different vendors involved there was no ownership of an overall solution for World Vision.
As a result ongoing maintenance & support was unnecessarily complicated and costly.
Having conducted a full audit and analysis of the current system and future requirements, Auditel then created a Roadmap and 3-phase plan to migrate World Vision to a solution which will meet their requirements for the next 3-5 years.
The Roadmap’s main aims are to:
- Consolidate from five suppliers to just one or two
- Tailor phone systems to suit current and future growth of users
- Provide for significant integration to cater for Remote Working, Cover on Reception, Scheduling, Teleconferencing and Reporting
Some of the immediate benefits
Receptionists when answering calls will see whether the person is in or not, or on the phone. Calendars will be accessible and even if they are out they may be available to take calls on their mobile and the call can then be transferred seamlessly.
When the receptionist goes to lunch, the cover will be able to log on seamlessly as a receptionist and take over; even taking calls from their normal workplace, if that is more effective.
Desk-based workers will be able to work from any desk by logging on to the phone and having all their phone profiles appearing at the phone. They will be able to see information about their colleagues’ availability and be able to contact them on their preferred device, desk phones or mobiles.
Remote workers or road warriors will be able to work from anywhere in the world, and appear to their colleagues as if they were in the office.