Gant Travel Enhances Customer Experience with Call Center Technology
Gant Travel provides business travel arrangements and corporate travel management to small and mid-sized companies. Based in Bloomington, Indiana, the company has over 80 years of travel experience. It has built its reputation on its ability to adapt and respond quickly to changing economies, technologies and industries in order to provide the best possible service and support to its clients.
Thirteen years ago, Gant Travel transitioned to a work from home (WFH) model which allowed it to hire and retain great travel agents and support staff. Prior to COVID19, the company employed 89 agents and six supervisors. This included agents from two BPO providers that the company transitioned to WFH due to government restrictions resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic.
By combining innovative technologies with its dedicated team, Gant Travel aims to provide every customer with their ‘last best experience’.
Grant Travel’s Customer Interaction Challenges
Two years ago, Gant Travel’s commitment to continuous service and superior customer experience led them to explore automating its QA process with speech analytics. At the time, the company was only able to monitor 2% of its customer/agent interactions, making it difficult to accurately measure performance or effectively coach agents.
In addition, Gant Travel was facing the challenge of inaccurate or incomplete dispositions. They simply did not have the resources necessary to listen to the number of calls it would take to understand why customers were calling in the first place. The company thought it had an accuracy issue with the disposition codes for call drivers that agents recorded in the CRM system, but did not have the data to bear this out.
Other issues included a lack of data regarding silence on calls, an effective feedback loop with agents and supervisors, and a reporting mechanism to keep executive management informed about performance and productivity improvements.
Grant Travel’s speech analytics solution
When Gant Travel started exploring speech analytics solutions to automate its QA process, it knew that it required a solution that would scale to meet its changing needs. It wanted a solution that would monitor 100% of its interactions and could provide feedback in near real time. It needed to provide quick and easy access to trend data, allow visibility into both agent and team level insights, and customize automated reports for various stakeholders. CallMiner, specifically its Analyze and Coach products, part of the Eureka platform, ticked all the boxes.
“We knew that CallMiner was going to be a gamechanger for us. It has given us the visibility into our call drivers, allowing us to better understand why customers call in the first place. It enables us to monitor 100% of our calls and provide feedback in near real time. It has also helped us improve training and productivity. Most importantly, it helps us every day to achieve our number one mission, which is to become our customers ’last best experience’,” says Kurt Mosher, Gant Travel COO and Executive Vice President.
Improve accuracy of agent dispositions & reduce silence
“Prior to CallMiner, Gant Travel relied solely on agent dispositions for call outcomes, which according to industry standards, is only 35-45% accurate. Now we are seeing an accuracy of 80% or higher on a daily basis,” says Luke Schulta, Gant Travel Contact Center Systems Administrator.
Another area of improvement has been in percent silence on calls. Prior to CallMiner, Gant Travel only looked for large blocks of silence, not realizing the impact that the total percentage of silence could have on productivity and customer experience. “Looking at silence on all our calls, was a real eye-opener for us. Going from manually looking at silence to completely automating the process allows us to give agents a score, making it easy for supervisors to coach the behavior,” Schulta says.
Automated QA redirects supervisors’ time and increases feedback
Automating the QA process with CallMiner redirected supervisors’ time. Prior to CallMiner, supervisors spent an hour on each call monitored – locating the call, listening to it and filling out the QA scorecard. They also addressed disputed quality scores which equated to approximately 20% additional rework. At this rate, Gant Travel was only able to QA two to five calls per agent per month.
“With CallMiner, there has been a 400% increase in frequency of feedback. In addition, insights from CallMiner brought greater consistency among our supervisors. We did regular calibrations with supervisors before speech analytics, but CallMiner uncovered inconsistencies in scoring across all supervisors that we did not have visibility into before,” says Schulta.
The CallMiner Analyze and Coach dashboards helped Gant Travel see the progress agents were making in key areas. Agents now have time to review their customer interactions and supervisors come along-side their team in much different capacity. “Coach was an absolute gamechanger for our supervisors and agents. It gave them an at-a-glance look at performance in each of the QA areas. It showed us how wide-spread a problem was so that we could address it quickly,” Schulta affirms.
Accelerate transition to WFH environment due to COVID-19
Gant Travel was just a few months into its speech analytics rollout when the COVID-19 pandemic hit. Although its own employees were already working from home, their BPO partner employees were not. CallMiner not only helped the company move their BPO partner employees to WFH, the system enabled Gant Travel to identify technical issues and address them quickly. In addition, CallMiner allowed the company to identify call drivers regarding the virus so they could be added to the system for automatic monitoring and tracking.
“We saw opportunities right out of the gate. CallMiner helped us visualize the impact of COVID-19 on our call drivers, allowing us to make changes to our IVR system so that customers could leave a voicemail to cancel trips. While other companies had hold times during the initial outbreak from five to 10 hours, we were able to reduce hold times to about seven minutes. Much of this success was due to the insights gleaned from CallMiner,” says Jim Conner, Director of Operations at Gant Travel.
“Through the CallMiner [customer] community, we were also able to implement syntax suggestions to create new categories related to the virus. This enabled us to free up over 100 hours of overall agent time in the first month that they could then spend on the phone helping customers with other issues,” Conner continues.
Gant Travel has an ongoing commitment to its customers to improve internal performance and ensure the best possible customer experience every time. To support this effort, the company plans to look at various traveler personas and correlate sentiment data with each one to determine how to best interact and support customer behaviors. It also plans to integrate email into CallMiner and additional channels down the road.
Most importantly, Gant Travel plans to share customer data with other team members to drive transparency throughout the company.
“We plan to cascade information gleaned from CallMiner throughout the organization, providing each account manager with insights that they can then share with their clients to solidify our partnership. To become our customer’s last best experience, we must make the investment in our tools and people. We see CallMiner as one of those gamechanger tools that is already propelling us forward towards our goal,” Mosher says.