O’ Keeffe and Swartz, an outsourced outbound call centre focused on the financial services industry, uses its own inhouse-developed call centre application, which sees the company successfully compete with the best of its kind.
The locally-developed platform, called CroSSell, deals with the effective use of workflow to handle the process of making calls and to monitor and guide the call centre agents to deliver the high quality service that customers require.
“The single-form application has an easy to use front-end that presents agents with the correct and most updated information of the customer being called. The customer’s profile is presented on screen the moment the call is answered and the agent is guided through the call with pre-filtered information and predetermined questions,” says Russell Brown, stakeholder and IT director of O’Keeffe and Swartz.
The most important part of the platform has to do with the one-of-a-kind predictive dialling technology developed in South Africa.
Says Brown: “This completely replaces the traditional PABX, auto-dial modems and telephones.”
The predictive dialler effectively reduces the waiting time between calls and call centre agents only receive calls that are already connected. It also keeps “silent” calls to a minimum and ensures that dialling is done as efficiently as possible.
The platform was developed as a complete system with the predictive dialler continuously receiving real-time status information from the CroSSell workstation as the agent progresses through the call.
O’Keeffe and Swartz was recently benchmarked against the top performers in the UK and for nine months constantly out performed UK call centres by 20%-30% on average.
When the platform was tested in the heat of European and UK business competition, the home-grown dialler met or exceeded the regulatory requirements.
Call lists, says Brown, are managed by the O’Keeffe and Swartz CroSSell predictive dialler to ensure that abandoned or silent calls are managed within acceptable limits – keeping within the European and UK standards for effective outbound call centre solutions.
Using digital recording and verification as a quality assurance mechanism further ensures that standards are applied using detailed processes and therefore ensures that all sales adhere to legal compliance.
“In South Africa there are no regulations in this regard, but we feel that keeping up with these international standards makes good business sense for us, our customers and the industry,” adds Brown.
“Our predictive dialler is designed to get as many calls connected as possible to the right target and with the minimum of ‘nuisance’ calls, by closely managing the over-dialling and abandon ratios,” he says.
The system was developed using Microsoft development tools and Microsoft SQL Server databases. The predictive dialler uses Intel/Dialogic telephony hardware.
CroSSell, notes Brown, is flexible and easily extensible and has been designed to accommodate the needs of the local and European market. This, he says, allows the company to effectively compete with rivals both locally and on the international front.
“Our software evolves in the call centre with input from call centre people and is a complete end-to-end solution that manages and monitors the effective processing of customer lists, predictive dialling and call centre agent workflow and performance,” says Brown.