Based in Southend and founded in 2011 with just six employees, telemarketing and sales company, The Direct Travel Team now has over 100 staff working on a wide range of campaigns covering everything from holiday promotions to property and even politics.
From launch, The Direct Travel Team’s business has always been 100% telephone-based but in its earliest days, it operated in a manual dialling environment that made it difficult to maximise productivity or process efficiency. At that time, it was not unusual for agents to only spend around 15 minutes per hour on the phone. The Direct Travel Team knew that it needed to address this situation, and it consequently started to look for a solution that would allow it to increase talk time while driving down costs. They arrived at the award winning outbound predictive dialler solution from Enghouse Interactive.
Once installed The Direct Travel Team saw immediate benefits. List penetration shot up from 50% to 80% and talk time per hour increased by a massive 200%.
According to Director Travel Team’s Managing Director, Jazz Singh “Implementing the Enghouse Interactive Outbound Predictive Dialler has helped us to reduce costs and improve productivity and efficiency within the call centre. It is a really good fit for our business, easy for agents to use and provides our supervisors and managers with the ability to customise and update the system to meet campaign objectives. The flexible reporting capability within the solution also provides us with timely and accurate information to aid business decisions”.
Wide Range of Applications
Since implementing Outbound Predictive Dialler, The Direct Travel Team has put it through its paces on a wide range of different applications. The company focuses on outbound telephone sales but that term has a broad definition. It runs holiday campaigns, sells accommodation and has even conducted a major voter research campaign ahead of the 2015 General Election.
As a result of the new solution, The Direct Travel Team has significantly raised talk time on many of their projects, in some cases from 15 minutes per hour up to as much as 45 minutes per hour. Most of this can be attributed to the rich functionality of the dialler, and in particular, features like answer machine and busy tone detection. The success rate of campaigns has increased significantly also, mainly because the efficiency of automated dialling using the Enghouse Interactive solution enables The Direct Travel Team to contact many more leads in the same period of time.
“The ability to connect with and interact with the data generated by the solution more effectively, really helps us to drive up call volumes and achieve better results in the campaigns we carry out,” adds Singh.
Service and support provided by Enghouse has also been excellent throughout and any issues have been quickly resolved. “The Enghouse team have an excellent, in-depth understanding of the solution, its features and functions and what it can achieve,” says Singh. “But they don’t just react rapidly when issues need addressing, they are also quick to come up with innovative advice and consultancy around how we can optimise the use of the technology.”
Direct Travel Team has also received positive feedback on the new solution from agents. The enhanced efficiency and effectiveness they have been able to achieve using the new outbound dialling solution has enabled some agents to as much as triple their commission.
“Agents have become far more productive for the business but they are also seeing the results of that enhanced productivity in their own pay packets and that has had a very positive affect on staff morale,” adds Singh.
Agents also appreciate that Outbound Predictive Dialler is intuitive to use and easy to operate. The Direct Travel Team has found that it generally takes about 48 hours for an agent who has never used the system before to be up and running on it. They are also able to organise their workload much more effectively. Before the Outbound Dialler was implemented, all information about call-back times, for example, had to be manually inputted into a database. The use of the new outbound telephony solution significantly improves the situation here also. Call-backs are immediately presented at the most effective times for both customer and agent.
These benefits are having a significant impact on agent loyalty and retention – and that’s played an important role in helping The Direct Travel Team grow employee numbers from 10 to 135 in the space of just five years.
Blueprint for Best Practice
Direct Travel Team see the potential of using the Enghouse Interactive Outbound Predictive Dialler solution as a blueprint for best practice both today and in the future. That is likely to prove especially valuable now, with the pending GDPR and other data protection regulations expected to drive significant changes in the telephone sales industry. Outbound Predictive Dialler can help to achieve this goal for The Direct Travel Team by helping them restrict the number of phone calls agents make to a particular data set in the course of a week for example, or by having a footprint both of how many times they speak to individuals and when they speak to them.
“The Information Commissioner’s Office is looking very closely at the telemarketing industry in the UK,” says Singh. “We believe the Enghouse Interactive Outbound Predictive Dialler solution can be the foundation for an approach that enables us to manage our data efficiently and effectively, which, in itself, will be key in helping ensure compliance. The fact that the Outbound Predictive Dialler also incorporates a call recording capability will also help in this regard.
“For a company like ourselves whose business is based on outbound telephone calls, it is absolutely critical to be able to put systems in place that can support the operations side of the organisation. Outbound Predictive Dialler does this for us very well, and Enghouse Interactive has optimised the benefits through the quality of support it has provided. We are now looking forward to building further on the benefits we have already achieved from the work we have done together so far.”