This is an English translation of the original article in Spanish. Original article in Relación Cliente Magazine – Glovo mejora su servicio de atención al cliente en Portugal con un proyecto 100% virtual, December 2021.
For Glovo, the pandemic coincided with a change of Customer Management provider in the Portuguese market. The service migrated to Comdata, which launched a work@home project from Brazil. The fact that this coincided with the height of the pandemic there presented an added challenge when recruiting and training workers as it could not be done in person. The success of the initiative means that the service will be maintained in this form going forward.
Mismanagement by the previous provider triggered the decision to migrate to a new provider. Comdata picked up the baton in less than 90 days. “With the previous provider, none of the KPIs (especially customer satisfaction, quality and service levels) had been reaching the goals set by Glovo. The intention was to migrate to a reputable provider that would stabilize these indicators and give us quality and excellence in customer service”, says Germán Puentes, regional head, live operation SWE at Glovo.
As mentioned, the service was launched in smart-working mode and will continue to be provided in this way because of the benefits it provides. These include greater cost effectiveness, since there is no need for the major infrastructure required by conventional contact centers and the model guarantees the same standard of quality as an in-person service.
“Normally these projects are launched in face-to-face mode to carry out the interviews, recruitment, and training, and provide the initial information. The first steps are usually also completed in person. This was impossible for us, however, because it meant putting more than 150 full-time employees (FTEs) at risk and if we had segmented the training, we would have been unable to meet the delivery dates. That’s why we perfected the training part of our virtual operating model to adapt it to a completely online environment, with video conferencing tools, learning management systems, and chat rooms for advice, with the support of the customer service team and colleagues working on the project we already had with Glovo in Romania”, explains Pedro Rodríguez Swanson, CCO at Comdata.
He also emphasizes that this was taking place in challenging times, in the midst of the global COVID-19 pandemic which was then at its height in Brazil. “It is a pioneering service because establishing a traditional contact center model involved a health risk for the teams. Therefore, after analyzing the project, public health data and technological requirements in detail, we recommended Comdata SmartHub®, our smart-working model, to Glovo. In it, we combined our suite of digital system virtualization tools with our virtual operating model which, in this case, allowed us to recruit, hire, supply, train, and manage while avoiding any physical contact with the teams,” says Rodríguez Swanson.
Comdata points out that although its smart-working model has been active since 2016, this was the first time a 100% work@home project had been implemented.
In other words, there was no physical contact in the project at any stage of the selection process, onboarding process, or daily operations. The whole process was conducted virtually, using Comdata’s proprietary and external tools to ensure comprehensive support for agents. “There were many challenges to overcome, such as connectivity and technical support issues that our IT team was able to solve in record time, as well as keeping agents motivated throughout all stages of the project. We achieved this thanks to the gamification of the service, converting the achievement of KPIs into points, which in turn become rewards for the agents”, says Pedro Rodríguez Swanson.
SUCCESS IS SHOWN BY THE DATA
The formula seems to work because the KPIs have improved. “Demand/sales have gone up, as has customer satisfaction after interaction with support staff. In fact, 8 out of 10 users rate the service 4 or 5 on a scale of 1 to 5. In the service surveys carried out over the last three months, customer service is not among the top 3 reasons for consumer dissatisfaction with Glovo”, indicates Germán Puentes.
As for improving internal work, “we are now working with a clear structure within the provider, with specialized resources”, he adds.
Success was already expected at the beginning of the project, when in just 4 months a team of 140 people was set up to provide customer service, plus 20 FTEs for the “real-time” team (delivery people and restaurants).
Likewise, within six months, the objectives of Glovo as a brand were reached: service levels (80% or more), CSAT (above 4 out of 5) and quality (+ 85%), all on target.
The success of the operation has led the companies to expand their collaboration. Currently, Comdata’s support to Glovo involves 180 people providing a 100% service to the Portuguese market, and not only within the scope of live ops – other internal departments of Glovo have decided to take advantage of the added benefits of having Comdata as a partner to manage part of their operations.
CONTINUITY OF SERVICE DURING THE REPLACEMENT
It is important to bear in mind that the challenge of starting up this project in the midst of a pandemic was intensified by the additional challenges of replacing a service provider without it feeling resentful. In order to avoid potential issues, a specific timetable was established and divided into stages, showing clear start and end dates, and also the people involved as contact points. Active and weekly communication was established between Glovo and Comdata, plus coordination (also weekly) with the main departments involved: training, quality, operations and workforce management (WFM). “The resources were gradually migrated from the old provider as they completed their 3 weeks of training at Comdata (in a fair and planned way). The resources needed were carefully studied and planned by both WFM departments”, says Germán Puentes.
The agent selection process was another issue that could have been problematic. “Comdata’s experience of managing start-ups and specifically Glovo in other markets (in the conventional way) meant that we could take advantage of all our know-how to set up a tiger team of people who were highly knowledgeable about the industry and the customer. This allowed us to minimize the learning curve and the adaptation to new processes, since we knew that, given the circumstances under which the project was being run, it would take longer than under normal public health conditions”, points out Rodríguez Swanson.
Subsequently, Comdata’s continuous improvement and management team exhaustively monitored the operation to control all KPIs in record time, overcoming all natural obstacles to the service and the additional ones created by the pandemic by implementing gamification, e-learning, and incentive tools.
It is worth adding at this point, as Pedro Rodríguez Swanson highlights, that the agent profiles suitable for a 100% work@home project differ from those of a conventional project, which is why sourcing proactive, resilient people with a high capacity to adapt to change but who also had experience in customer and industry management was so important in this case. “We focused on those who had worked as glovers at some stage and who, of course, were digital natives.
“There were challenges both at the beginning of the project, in sourcing these specialized agents, and subsequently because, given the high demand for such profiles, daily retention was essential, prioritizing the agent’s experience and giving them the tools that they needed to develop professionally and evolve as part of Comdata”, points out Rodríguez Swanson.
Thanks to the good understanding between the two companies, Glovo is considering the option of launching a B2B service where Comdata would be in charge of managing the distribution for certain companies with small volume merchandise.
COLLABORATION BETWEEN THE TWO COMPANIES
Harmony between the parties involved, as happened in this case, is important for a project like this to succeed.
“There was intense collaboration, with constant communication (sometimes daily) and 360º feedback. Also open collaboration between the parties, with both willing to listen and take action quickly”, comments Germán Puentes of Glovo.
“As Germán comments, more than just communication, the relationship established between Comdata and Glovo has been one of true partnership, where Glovo has set clear guidelines and Comdata has offered its experience and knowledge, which has been very well received by Glovo to make things a reality. This is why communication with Glovo has been so smooth, because from the outset our objective has been to become an extension of them, providing all the value inherent to our role as BPO provider”, says Pedro Rodríguez Swanson.
MAIN FEATURES OF THE PROJECT LAUNCHED
- 100% virtual project.
- Specialized profiles.
- Revolutionary operating model.
- Indirect cost reduction because we do not depend on large infrastructure.
- Operational quality equal to that of conventional projects or better.