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Case Study

July 01, 2003 - Article

Posted: 7/2003

Case Study
BasicPhone Boosts Customer Service Quality with Secure, Instant Messaging

Texas-based BasicPhone Inc., a provider of long-distance and residential phone services in 12 states, has found instant messaging (IM) to be key to its successful customer service processes and policies.

After researching available enterprise IM offerings, BasicPhone tested several competitive products and chose e/pop 3.0 from WiredRed Software because of its flexibility and central management capabilities. BasicPhone employees are using e/pop for general communications and its 22 dedicated CSRs are using it to help customers with questions regarding billing, repair, sales, service and general information.

Because the e/pop presence system allows employees to see who is online and available immediately, CSRs can chat with a manager, for example, to solve a customers problem while they are still on the phone. This decreases the need to call the customer back for problem resolution and less time is spent on the call overall.

To achieve the ability to communicate instantaneously is an enormous feat for BasicPhone Inc. given physical layout of the companys headquarters. Employees are divided between two separate buildings. The customer service department, located in one building, can communicate with the order processing, data entry, disconnect and accounts receivable departments located in the other building immediately. e/pops presence component makes it possible for all employees to know who is available and online without being in the same physical location and without having to pick up the phone or running to the building next door. This not only increases the efficiency of communications, it fosters a cohesive the teamwork environment because of the ability to respond faster to co-workers about customer related problems and issues.

While the No. 1 benefit of using enterprise instant messaging is the ability to serve customers better and faster, weve found the technology helps the entire company to function and work as a team. The results have been incredible. All employees feel empowered to do their best to help the customer with the support from all department personnel, said Chad Kibodeaux, sales and marketing director at BasicPhone.

James Bourgeois, the system administrator for BasicPhone, was responsible for testing and choosing the right enterprise IM solution. After testing several products, we chose e/pop for its flexibility and ability to send messages to one person or a group of people at the same time. Also, from my perspective the central management capabilities found in e/pop make my job a lot easier.

The lock-down feature is extremely important. There is no way that the e/pop application can be exited or deleted and only the specific features Ive chosen are available. More importantly, you dont have to be computer savvy at all to use e/pop. It is extremely intuitive, so our employees need little or no training to use it.

While increased productivity and better customer service are the result of using enterprise IM technology, e/pop has become a tool that BasicPhone relies upon daily. From the company president down to the front-line employees it has become as much of a necessity as the telephone, the company reports.

This is a highly competitive industry.Whoever wins the customer service battle wins the business. We believe e/pop pays for itself with the speed of service it allows us to provide. BasicPhone strives to offer the best customer service we can and we are convinced we cant meet our quality of service objectives without e/pop, says Kibodeaux.

Aberdeen Group Inc.

AT&T Corp.

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PeopleSoft Inc.

Siebel Systems Inc.

WilTel Communications LLC

Z-Tel Technologies Inc.


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