Customer service elementary with new business system

In August, the City of Gosnells in Western Australia launched its new Contact Centre to improve customer service for the 65,000-plus people who call the City each year.

To ensure a faster, more convenient way for Contact Centre staff to respond to caller queries, the City’s Business Systems team set about developing a neat, interactive tool to give staff as much information about the caller as possible.

The development process was given the name Project Sherlock and it led to the creation of a ‘screen pop’ that would ensure Contact Centre team members were primed to help customers even before they answered a call.

City of Gosnells Mayor Olwen Searle said Project Sherlock has increased the efficiency of the City’s customer service.
“Imagine the time and customer frustration saved when Contact Centre staff don’t have to spend the first five minutes of a call getting customers to spell out their last names and read out account numbers,” she said.

“Screen pops have resulted in the most revolutionary, easy and useful change in the City’s handling of customers – most importantly, it allows Contact Centre staff to personalise conversations and promptly resolve any issues that callers may have.”

The City’s Business Systems Coordinator Chris Hidding said the Project Sherlock software had the capability to load a custom web application to perform a number of tasks. The caller’s phone number can now be used to search the City’s business systems to find customer records, with any records matching the inbound number automatically displayed to the Contact Centre team member.

There is direct navigation to the City’s other business systems and increased functionality to speed-up repeated tasks, such as automated callback emails (with pre-populated details of call) and the creation of customer requests (with pre-populated details of person or property).

Supporting Project Sherlock is the City’s new Knowledge Base tool, which has provided a one-stop shop for answers to the most frequently asked (and some not-so-common) questions from customers.

“A comprehensive Knowledge Base is key to an efficient and effective Contact Centre – our Business Systems team sourced a low-cost knowledge base tool, which was adapted for the City’s needs, with a long-term plan to make it available for all City staff,” said Mr Hidding.

“News articles associated with the Knowledge Base ensure consistent information is delivered to customers about City events or items of immediate relevance such as issues in the media spotlight.”