Playing it cool in the connected world
The latest Whirlpool refrigerator is far more than just a humble cold cabinet. It’s a smart device. So when the connection fails, and the frustrated customer starts calling, a Transcom customer service agent is there to help them – and their fridges – keep their cool.
Transcom became a strategic Whirlpool partner in 2014, when the global white goods giant acquired a controlling stake in Italian household appliance group Indesit. Transcom had provided Indesit with customer contact services since 2007: a cooperation that began with five European countries and quickly grew to cover 12. Today Transcom provides customer assistance services for Whirlpool in some 20 countries throughout EMEA, in 28 different languages. And there seems to be a great demand for these services. In EMEA alone, Transcom’s agents receive a staggering 10 million e-mails and calls from Whirlpool’s customers every year: or 30,000 a day.
In the first year of its partnership with Transcom, Whirlpool’s operating costs were optimized, mainly thanks to Whirlpool being able to whittle down the number of providers to just one thanks to Transcom’s multi-language services, located in just four contact centers. “This means I just have one number to call and one person to speak to if I have a problem now. It makes life so easy,” says Stefano Ballerini, Customer Service Manager EMEA at Whirlpool.
“For every day that goes by, domestic appliances are getting smarter and smarter,” explains Ballerini “and they require a whole new level of customer service. The agents need to know everything about internet connections, routers and so forth to be able to deal effectively with this kind of reality,” he says, adding that, already today, his company relies a great deal on the Transcom agents’ knowledge to avoid real-life technician intervention and still keep Whirlpool’s customers happy and satisfied.
“Although the cost-savings are of course of great importance to the cooperation between Whirlpool and Transcom working so well, it is particularly Transcom’s flexibility, responsiveness and loyalty that I appreciate”, adds Ballerini. “When you walk into the customer assistance services center in Budapest, you feel like you’re in a Whirlpool center. Everything is Whirlpool branded and everyone is talking Whirlpool – to the point, in fact, that we gave the Transcom agents the same Christmas gifts we gave our own staff, because they really feel part of our team.”
“We are true partners,” Ballerini says. “We work together, we fight together and we always come out with a joint decision. This is so, so important.”
This is an abbreviated version of an article that appeared in the latest issue of the Hello Transcom magazine, written by Louise Nordström.