As the COVID-19 pandemic spread across the globe and government authorities enacted shelter-in-place measures, a large Canadian telecommunications company faced the challenge of not only transitioning its customer care professionals in India to remote work but also enabling them to continue receiving and placing customer support calls. Traditional contact center providers were unable to offer a viable solution for remote customer care, so the company turned to CGI for help.

The challenge of supporting customers remotely

Required lockdowns caused by the pandemic required the telecom firm’s on-premise contact center in India to close. Now operating remotely, employees faced the challenges of inadequate phone access and low bandwidth, while, at the same time, having to deal with a dramatic rise in contact center calls. The company needed to deploy a distributed remote contact center that would address each of these challenges rapidly.

The company turned to several contact center solution providers, but came up empty handed. None could offer the remote capabilities and additional capacity that it required.

Having relied on CGI for many years as an IT partner, the company solicited CGI’s help in coming up with a feasible remote customer care solution. CGI tapped into its 20+ years of customer contact center and workforce management experience, along with its expertise in deploying cloud solutions, to tackle the challenge. The client was under significant pressure to find a solution fast, and the CGI team came through. Within a very short timeframe, the team proposed and implemented an innovative and secure cloud contact center for remote workers.

Enabling remote customer care via the cloud

The omni-channel contact center is 100% cloud based and offers full customer care functionality, along with built-in robust security and privacy standards. Customer care personnel are able to access and use every function from any remote location, including those living in bandwidth-constrained areas. The solution’s architecture is open and scalable, enabling the integration of additional functionality and capacity quickly and seamlessly. It also enables easy integration with third-party systems.

The CGI team identified and implemented the solution within five days, working around the clock. The team spent the first two days assessing the client’s situation and its readiness for a cloud solution, as well as designing a proof of concept. During days three through five, the team built, integrated and tested the solution. On day five, the solution successfully went live.

From network and firewall configuration, to contact flow design, to telephony setup, to agent training, the team delivered end-to-end implementation services without business disruption. The solution provides full contact center services, including multiple telephony options, artificial intelligence capabilities, skill-based routing, real-time and historical analytics, dashboards, metrics, call recording and transcripts, natural language processing and more.

Delivering innovation, speed, security, increased capacity and more

The CGI team went beyond providing just a technology solution. It clearly identified the client’s pain points and requirements and offered outside-the-box thinking. Understanding the client’s urgency to provide remote customer care and business continuity, the team set up the innovative cloud solution as a minimum viable product. This rapid development approach enabled customer service agents to receive and place calls within the first 72 hours.

Security was critically important, so the team also took measures to ensure tight security, such as implementing robust single sign-on authentication and permission features. The solution also delivers increased capacity on demand through IP softphones, which eliminated the need for additional phone lines for new agents.  

Cloud-based services have transformed how the telecom firm now consumes and delivers on-demand services, enabling it to operate a more robust and resilient technology supply chain. With CGI’s help, the company has been able to respond and rebound in the face of the pandemic, and reinvent customer care for the future.