Simply Business, UK insurance broker for small businesses, has reduced the time that customers must spend on the telephone with them by as much as 30 seconds to five minutes per call, thus brightening the customers’ days, and reducing the cost of doing business at the same time.
They have done this by means of an innovative new IT tool called Swivelscript, from UK-based Super::tec, which has been embraced since its April release by users across all industries, including insurance, financial services, outsourcing and managed services, and many others.
Imagine an old fashioned office, with paper files everywhere. A customer comes in on foot or telephones the customer service representative with a question or a problem, or possibly with a difficulty that the company can solve by selling the customer something. The company rep goes to a file cabinet and pulls out the customer’s manila file, another file with product or contract data, and possibly also a receipt book, or a memo pad for sending a note to the responsible company executive. Imagine the agent in his swivel chair breezily turning from cabinet to credenza to desk, shuffling paperwork and copying data. We are not as far beyond that as we think, with bigger and more distant customer contact centers, and with more, and more complex, data distributed among more people over longer distances.
And now when we spend time waiting for a service rep, we may spend billable cell phone minutes as well.
Now, imagine yourself standing in that same old wood-paneled office, with the battered desk and credenza, and the old oak file cabinet, but this time the customer service rep stays facing you at his desk while he talks to you, and a big magic pen swivels through the different file drawers and the credenza, copying everything the rep writes on his desktop to the relevant documents elsewhere, and you get your business accomplished in much less time, with the feeling that the rep has been politely focused on you, rather than the dispersive paperwork.
Swivelscript is that magic pen, and that old swivel chair, and its modern incarnation, the swiveling mouse, has been replaced with the problem-solving Swivelscript solution. Swivelscript does exactly what it sounds like it does: when the service rep writes data in one place, Swivelscript automatically turns about and writes the data in every other program, file, and application where it will be needed.
Swivelscript does not take over the desktop; it is low impact for the user, who does not need to do anything different or additional to what he did before adopting Swivelscript, so extensive employee retraining is not required. It is not a complete CRM, or customer relationship management system, that totally reorganizes the customer and company interface. Neither does it manage data exchanges at a centralized server, that typically requires serious hardware upgrades.
Instead of all this, Swivelscript is a connecting layer to integrate a company’s existing systems, by a data exchange that occurs at the agent’s desktop. Additionally, it “harvests” data across different company applications to give an agent rapid access to an overview of essential data. Swivelscript’s superb scalability also means that businesses of any size can enjoy the benefits, whether that business has ten desktops or a thousand.
When a customer calls an insurance or financial services or catalog company for service, the service rep may be handling from 5 to 20 applications, in parallel while talking to the customer. If you think back to some of your experiences trying to get assistance from an insurance claims agent, you could probably tell that the rep did not have a really good focus on your conversation, and helping you took longer than it felt like it should have taken.
Simply Business’ Operations Manager Ian Jones says that “The introduction of this software has made the process of buying complex insurance products easier and quicker for both our customers and for members of our team. This is one of the ways that we have been able to improve the service that we offer to our customers. We are also very pleased that Swivelscript has helped us to improve our internal processes for the benefit of our staff.”
Edwin van der Sanden brought his 20 years of experience in software development and programming, and his ten years of experience in working with customer contact centers to the task of developing a low-cost and rapidly installed solution to the problem of how a customer service agent can copy data between several different company applications, without error or delay, and without making a customer wait on hold while the agent copies and transfers data. He said that “The best part is that this system is lightweight, easy to initiate, and delivers quick results for a business, at very low cost. The same system can be used for facilitating customer calls to financial services companies and retailers, and for facilitating business-to-business calls in vertical applications.”