Case Study: RCDA helps turn contact center sales results around for a Fortune 500 satellite services company and its partner, a large telecommunications provider

Overview

In fall 2014 a Fortune 500 satellite services provider approached Robert C. Davis and Associates (RCDA) about helping them solve a problem with their largest telecommunications partner. The partner was 6,000 sales behind target leading into the fourth quarter and in jeopardy of missing its yearly target for the third year in a row. The client sought a solution to turn this trend around.

Pilot Programs: Action and Results

RCDA deployed nine resources (Sales Champions) in a pilot program to work with the partner’s main contact centers across the United States. The Sales Champions made quick work of building relationships with site leadership and immersed themselves in understanding the partner’s business and customer base. Their energy, human relations skills and superb coaching rejuvenated enthusiasm within the contact centers around offering the client’s services. The results from the pilot program exceeded expectations:

  • The partner achieved more than the 6,000 sales needed, and the client engaged RCDA to continue the improvements in 2015. The partner and the client formed a partnership to deploy one RCDA resource in a second pilot program in San Marcos, Texas, with the goal of lifting the partner’s video offering by 10% while achieving the same lift in the client’s sales. RCDA once again exceeded expectations by lifting the partner’s sales by 75% and the client’s sales by 25%. In fact, the San Marcos site saw a minimum of a 20% lift across all of its KPIs.

Post-Pilot Program: Action and Results

Given the success of the pilots, the client hired RCDA in mid 2015 to deploy 10 RCDA resources into the partner’s owned and operated centers and three of its own vendor partner contact centers. Deliverables, mirroring the model established during the pilots, included:

  • Partnering with site teams to support KPI achievement.
  • Providing weekly reporting that outlined site understanding and gaps.
  • Provided administrative support duties such as tracking sales results and administering incentives.

Mentoring, modeling and coaching – RCDA drove acceptance at the site level through mentoring, modeling and coaching. The main goal was to achieve sustainable action. The Sales Champions drove accountability at the VP, director, operations manager (OM) and team manager (TM) levels. They provided weekly feedback to the client and site stakeholders regarding compliance and commitment to the process.

WILO coaching – RCDA helped each site adopt and use a “Week In the Life Of” (WILO) structured day approach for leadership through mentoring, modeling and coaching. The approach included weekly reporting to include percent adherence and daily feedback to OMs.

Huddles – The Sales Champions facilitated daily team huddles, utilizing a huddle scorecard to identify gaps and provide feedback ensuring one confirmation per TM per week. This included weekly reporting to include site average score, daily coaching with the TMs and OMs, observing OMs conducting huddle confirmations to calibrate and provide coaching and mentoring, and providing feedback to the site director regarding OM understanding and compliance to huddle delivery.

Coaching/monthly performance review (MPR) confirmations – The Sales Champions identified gaps and modeled a tri-level coaching process for one TM per day. This effort included weekly reporting on score and count, daily feedback with TMs and OMs, observing OMs conducting tri-levels and providing coaching and feedback to the OMs, and providing feedback to the site director regarding OM understanding and compliance to the tri-level process in MPRs.

Winning hearts and minds – One of the keys to success was winning the hearts and minds of site teams around the path forward. RCDA accomplished this by:

  • Having weekly in-person meetings with site directors and OMs, delivering feedback in a positive supportive manner that caused most people to respond in a constructive way.
  • Providing a weekly reporting/communication recap to site directors and OMs.
  • Conducting daily coaching, mentoring and communication with TMs and OMs.
  • Facilitating the creation of a positive environment focused on the customer through all interactions and execution. It will be an environment that can be sustained.

Maximizing sales – To help each site maximize sales, RCDA drove KPIs including video sales to goal through tri-level and side-by-side coaching. The Sales Champions aligned team members with the sites’ KPI focus. They helped TMs read and understand the reports so they could identify outliers themselves. And they earned agent trust by modeling and demonstrating the commitment to the process. This included highlighting examples of exemplary performance as outliers moved up in performance and helping the partner sites highlight positive examples and make celebrating success a part of their cultures.

Aligning with Training – RCDA ensured proper delivery by aligning with the partner’s training operations. The Sales Champions partnered with internal training teams to make sure trainers were delivering appropriate new-hire training in an effective and timely manner.

Up-training for New TMs – RCDA leveraged a comprehensive onboarding outline and helped ensure that new TMs received the proper training to execute with excellence. The Sales Champions helped the sites develop a plan and the put people in place to continue the training of new TMs without the RCDA team’s help.

Managing incentives – RCDA worked within a set monthly incentive money budget, using the financial resources to drive performance at the supervisor level and incentivize correct behaviors and team performance.

Scheduling – The Sales Champions worked four-day weeks, each creating a weekly calendar to include interactions with each team onsite.

Documentation and weekly reporting/assessments – Each Sales Champion used side-by-side coaching forms designed by RCDA and was responsible for creating interaction recaps to be shared with site leadership. Weekly reporting included the site directors and OMs. RCDA leveraged pre and post assessments to close performance gaps. This involved reviewing assessment results with the site leadership teams and deploying Sales Champions to partner with site leadership to close performance gaps. RCDA observed and provided feedback on all tactics, huddles, coaching logs and coaching activities, conducted up-training and attrition training as needed, and conducted skill transfer on all skills as required.

KPI achievement support – RCDA partnered with site teams to support KPI achievement. This included weekly strategy meetings with teams to review previous week’s performance to goal by KPI and site, discuss the site’s KPI performance gaps, and deliver workshops aligned with performance gaps.

Keys to Success

RCDA has leaned on its proven processes to help the client’s partners produce consistent results. The company’s expertise in coaching, training and motivating sales organizations were keys to the success of these initiatives. The Sales Champions utilized excellent side-by-side coaching to improve product knowledge and soft skills while working with agents handling customer billing calls. Most of the agents needed effective transitions from billing to sales and a complete discovery process. Coaching TMs and OMs on the other hand was successful in transferring skills to and motivating the teams. The combined coaching approach not only produced quick results, but it also created a sustainable model for continued success.

Results Highlights

  • Effective working relationships (trusted advisors) with supervisors and the leadership teams, and strong engagement with the agents
  • Agent improvement across all product lines
  • Open communication and consistent support
  • Number improvement such as moving from 62% to goal to 170% to goal
  • Greenhouse (new-hire) training class sales effectiveness rate of 90% and a graduation rate of 85%
  • Greenhouse training class outperforming control classes in sales effectiveness by 75% and graduation rate by 281%
  • Dramatic reductions in agents who were “no-sellers” of the client’s services
  • Exceptional improvements, often record-breaking, in sales per 100 calls (SP100) of the client’s services
  • Strong gains in attachment rate (the number of units of a secondary service sold as a direct or implied consequence of the sale of a primary service)
  • Millions of dollars in added revenue for the client and the partner