Q&A: Maintaining outstanding customer service throughout service transition

Q&A: Maintaining outstanding customer service throughout service transition

17th July 2019 · Arvato · Blog

Authored by Rab Singhania, Major Projects Director, ArvatoConnect

We know that transition management is one of the most critical times of any outsourcing partnership. Delivering a smooth transfer of operations to maintain outstanding customer service, and also ensuring that all transitioning employees are kept fully informed of any changes and are comfortable with their new role, is a challenging process for any business.

Here, we catch up with Rab Singhania, Arvato’s Major Projects Director, to understand more about our tried and tested approach to migration that guarantees a seamless experience for our clients, their workforce and their customers.

What are the key client challenges faced during a service transition that Arvato can help to solve?

The main concern faced by our clients is how to make sure there is no disruption or drop in quality to the service provided to their customers. Our approach is designed to minimise the impact on our clients’ day-to-day work – we collaborate closely with every client to understand any potential risks and challenges upfront, producing a plan that guarantees a seamless transition of services, people and knowledge.

How do you help clients to prepare for a transition?

One of the most important elements of a transition is to build awareness within the client team of our approach and any upcoming changes to their service delivery. We do this through collaboration sessions that are used to inform the project charter and governance procedure, so our scope and key timings are agreed upfront. These sessions also give us an opportunity to get to know all stakeholders and agree the best channels of communication, allowing us to deliver clear, transparent updates on our progress throughout the transition.

We also use these sessions to build detailed plans and deliver essential preparatory work such as due diligence, recruitment planning, stabilisation and post-transition plans.

How do you maintain high standards of customer service when transferring staff?

Often in a TUPE transfer, there are roles that are not included in the initial migration or that need to be filled throughout the transition’s lifecycle. We know how important it is to find the best-qualified and highly-skilled people for every role, and our recruitment team work hand in hand with the operations management team to identify the candidates with the most appropriate skillsets. We communicate closely with every candidate to ensure that expectations are defined up-front, meaning we are able to recruit staff for the long-term.

We also understand the importance of employee engagement for ensuring the highest quality customer service. A key component of this is making sure that all employees are fully bought-in to the transition process and equipped with everything they need to know about Arvato, our culture and values. Part of our approach involves a partnering programme, where staff meet existing Arvato employees who have already joined the business through TUPE to ensure they learn from their experiences and transition smoothly into their new role.

How do we kickstart service delivery for our clients?

We prefer to take a ‘dual running’ approach, which means the Arvato team will gradually take over our client’s processes in increments. This way, we can address any issues that arise quickly, and with minimal impact.

If this approach isn’t the right fit for our clients, we’re also well versed in implementing hard transitions, where all operations transfer across at the same time. That all comes back to having a sound preparation phase in which we establish our clients’ priorities and ensure all policies and procedures are agreed in advance.

What does success look like?

One of our recent projects involved the creation of a new dual-site Customer Interaction Centre for an international automotive brand, where Arvato became responsible for delivering customer services for established customers and prospective buyers.

The transition saw us transfer 345 staff – 304 to Slough and 41 to Farnborough – providing multi-channel round-the-clock customer support via phone, email, white mail, social media and web chat.

Our specialist teams were on hand to provide a targeted, highly-personalised service to our client’s customers, while maintaining the highest quality standards in line with business processes and protocols. The success of our approach was founded on close collaboration with our client in the initial project stages, helping us to identify any potential risks and challenges upfront to make sure our plan resulted in a seamless migration of services, people and knowledge.

So far, the service has delivered month-on-month quality improvements, with 100 per cent on time processing of all our client’s finance deal applications.

This project demonstrates the strength of our tried and tested methodology, guaranteeing cost-effectiveness and predictable outcomes for our clients.

The decision to outsource key operations and CX services is a significant one for any company, meaning getting a transition right is crucial for maintaining a business’ productivity, employee satisfaction and outstanding customer care. Clients can rely on our trusted methodology to help streamline processes, improve efficiency and drive down costs, in the knowledge that support is always on hand to maintain the highest quality services.

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