Intelenet Works the Numbers for Barclaycard

Silver winners in both the Pro-Active Complaint Handling and Financial Services Team categories, Intelenet Global Services is one of the largest international providers of business services. With 55,000 staff members in 70 offices around the world, the company supports more than 100 companies in more than 25 languages.

Among Intelenet’s clients is UK-based Barclaycard, the credit card and payment-services division of Barclay’s plc. Intelenet staff members in Mumbai, India, handle more than 600,000 customer relations calls for Barclaycard each month.

Intelenet has dozens of competitors in India and throughout the world, so when Barclaycard challenged the company to improve complaint processing in 2017, the company dove deep into the numbers, analysing incoming calls and the way they were resolved. Intelenet’s goal was to prevent future complaints while improving customer experience for all of Barclaycard’s customers.

Slicing and dicing the data

Intelenet started with a hard look at complaint data. They analysed complaint volume for different Barclaycard products and services. They identified the top 10 complaint types. They performed cross-tabulations to find pain points that could be addressed to meet Barclaycard’s customer service goals.

It seemed to Intelenet that to meet Barclaycard’s expectations, complaint handling would have to change from a reactive process of dealing with complaints as they arose to a proactive service unit that used existing data to drive improvements, dealing with complaints faster and more efficiently, and eliminating future complaints before they happened.

Documenting the top 10 complaints types proved to be a step in the right direction. Once managers identified which were the most common complaints, they could train staff members to resolve those complaints quickly and efficiently. That simple step, along with the associated training, went a long way toward improving customer satisfaction levels.

Intelenet was so pleased with the results of training that it went further, creating a sort of cultural-background curriculum that helped staff members in India understand what customers in the UK expected in terms of service.

Another key development was the decision to allow customer-service agents to make a larger number of complaint-resolution decisions that had previously required approval from a team leader. This led to faster resolution. It also pleased customers, who prefer to deal with a single customer-service rep when they call.

Further analysis demonstrated that rookie members of the customer-service team had a complaints-per-contact rate of 2.7%, while staff members with a year or more on the job had a rate of 1.4%. Clearly, experienced staff members delivered better results. Intelenet resolved to increase the average tenure of customer-service staff members by investing in steps to reduce attrition.

The company upgraded the workspace in Mumbai to make it look and feel like a British Barclaycard office. It installed large plasma TVs to get key messages to team members without interrupting their work. And Intelenet revised its staff onboarding process with techniques from gamification, background on UK culture, and a practice room in which new agents worked one-on-one with experienced agents to manage calls during their training period.

Intelenet realised that different kind of complaints have different solutions, so it began sorting complaints into bins. Some were related to people, others to policy, and others to processes.

People complaints were the result of mishandled calls by Intelegent workers. The company addressed these complaints with enhanced onboarding, additional training, and reduced attrition.

Policy complaints were harder to resolve because they required a policy change at Barclaycard. Intelenet presented data on these problems to Barclaycard, which revised policies to reduce customer pain points.

Process complaints were related to Intelenet rules about how complaints were handled. They often resulted in very long calls to resolve customer problems or hand-offs to different staff members. Intelenet addressed process complaints by simplifying complaint resolution procedures and empowering staff members to resolve more complaints without requiring management sign-off.

Reaping rewards

Intelegent’s efforts paid off. In nine months, the company increased customer satisfaction and reduced the number of complaints by 7%. The company expects to hit Barclaycard’s 10% reduction target within a 12-month window.

Does your company reward its front-line staff who deal with complaints? Celebrate your complaint handling heroes with the UK Complaint handling Awards 2019. View the categories here and enter before 16th November 2018.