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"The reduction in costs of electricity consumption and maintenance management has been substantial."
—Agostino Cotino, IT Manager, British Airways Italia
BRITISH AIRWAYS IS TURBOCHARGING ITS CALL CENTERS IN ITALY
Reduced Costs, Quick Maintenance and a Host of Opportunities from Avaya IP Telephony
The Italian subsidiary of British Airways, the largest airline in the United Kingdom in terms of fleet, number of flights and destinations, has selected Avaya solutions to streamline and revamp its call center activities in support of the indirect sales network. Following its restructuring in Italy, currently consisting of one hundred employees that are mainly distributed between the head office in Rome and the Milan offices, it was necessary for British Airways Italia to upgrade its telephone exchange system. The previous system was based on traditional technology, making it too complex in terms of cabling and configuration, expensive in terms of maintenance work and in general, just too big for the company's new requirements. Even from a functional perspective, the legacy system used by the call center did not allow for the desired levels of reporting flexibility to support the decisions made by British Airways sales managers, who must manage the productivity and satisfaction of the indirect channel in the best way possible.
Thus, it was decided to implement Avaya's IP Telephony solution based on the IP Office Preferred Edition platform and the Call Center Reporter (CCR) extension.
“What led us towards the complete virtualization of our telephone system was predominantly the need to reduce the space taken up by the infrastructure required for it, and consequently the need to significantly reduce management costs and electricity consumption,” explains Agostino Cotino who, along with his team, ensures that the ICT resources for the Italian wing of British Airways are fully operational.
Another objective for Cotino and his technicians was to drastically simplify aspects linked primarily to the configuration of the previous telephone system, as well as the operations required to upgrade its features, which previously required complicated steps. For example, the new Avaya infrastructure makes it substantially easier to program essential parameters such as messages and the Interactive Voice Response (IVR) tree, and enables all settings to be saved in tables that can be restored in a matter of seconds, with significant return on investment in terms of resilience and business continuity.
The Right Partner to Get You Instantly Operational
All of Avaya IP Telephony's research, design and implementation procedures were monitored by experts from Telex Telecomunicazioni, a systems integrator with thirty years of experience in telecommunications and office automation. The proactive role that this technology partner played also proved to be fundamental in keeping time frames for this significant transformation to a minimum, and fulfilling an essential requirement: moving to a completely new telephone system with a simple click, without losing operations for a few seconds. British Airways' IT manager stated that he particularly appreciated Telex Telecomunicazioni's professionalism in their skillful approach to optimization and productivity issues, which are currently a priority for medium-sized companies like the Italian subsidiary of the large British airline.
To transform an obsolete switchboard into an optimized, scalable IP platform
To substantially reduce consumption, management costs and complexity
To enhance the call center's operations and productivity
To guarantee an evolving approach towards smart working
Containment of energy costs
Switchboard maintenance budget cut in half
Optimization of physical cabling and reduction of equipped stations
Creation of a powerful analytical tool to monitor call center activities
Increased employee motivation
The ability to measure the indirect channel's effectiveness and satisfaction levels
Customized Call Center
The British Airways project was started following the selection of the Avaya solution in the second half of 2014, and ended with a four-week implementation phase, during which the project underwent an initial precise planning phase that included a real testing cycle in Telex labs. This was designed specifically to verify that Avaya's CCR solution would fully satisfy the customer's “analytical expectations.” The first issue faced by Telex technicians, specifically Andrea Rem Picci, Managing Director of the consulting and systems integrator company, involved the extremely complex and redundant structured cabling. The telephone system now used by the Italian subsidiary of British Airways has been completely virtualized onto a single server which integrates IVR features, call management and CCR reporting as software applications. Consequently, this has freed up a substantial amount of space in equipped areas hosting these systems, which currently link 70 Avaya IP 1608-1616 series terminals, making maintenance work and modifications significantly easier.
Whilst in the past, every temporary suspension of service and every change to the incoming call handling methods required the involvement of specialized technicians, these can now be managed in a much more streamlined manner by the employees themselves, with the guidance of staff led by Cotino. The user interfaces are those that are well known across the World Wide Web. “We have definitely noticed reduced time frames for fixing technical problems with the switchboard, and fewer faults in general,” reveals the airline's Italian IT Manager. “The telephone platform has also become much more flexible, meaning that we are able to relocate work stations faster.”
Employees and Subsidiaries, All Satisfied
The impact of Avaya's technology is even more evident when it comes to internal processes. With the conventional type of platform previously used, the creation of a report on the call center activities of one specific British Airways agent in Italy required the direct involvement of IT staff. They were forced to physically go to the server room to access the device that managed the switchboard from a fixed workstation. Problems and deadlines had a significant impact on the ability of British Airways' sales network to manage customer satisfaction levels at an optimal level. Thanks to Avaya CCR, it is finally possible to monitor the work of fifteen employees at the call center that manages the channel, in real time. This incentivizes and encourages action, and has the added advantage of providing a more timely and exhaustive comparison of the sales agents, and of British Airways' ability to meet the requirements of the indirect channel.
The Costs Cut in Half
Thanks to the consulting support provided by Telex, the new potential of this analytical platform was perceived by British Airways customers as another positive consequence of an innovative project of transformation, which was able to fully deliver on its original optimization objectives. “The reduction in costs of electricity consumption and maintenance management has been substantial,” emphasizes Cotino, who is already able to precisely quantify the return on the investment in Avaya's IP Telephony brand. “Just think, the annual budget that we normally assigned to maintenance for the old switchboard has been cut in half.” The technician's overall opinion is very positive, both in terms of the quality and potential of the Avaya solution, and in terms of the levels of expertise brought to the plate by Telex throughout the planning and implementation phase. The flexibility of corporate telephony “as a service” is an open door to the future.
"The reduction in costs of electricity consumption and maintenance management has been substantial. The annual budget that we normally assigned to maintenance for the old switchboard has been cut in half."
—Agostino Cotino, IT Manager, British Airways Italia
A Smarter, More Integrated Future
Technology that has a positive impact on spending budgets for British Airways telephony, primarily benefiting call center operations, can immediately evolve into an integrated multi-channel Contact Center system and be rolled out to all the Italian offices, including the company's airport facilities involved in passenger and cargo transport services. This will facilitate the handling of call traffic on lines, and with incremental investments, create innovative videoconferencing, smart working and collaboration solutions.
About British Airways Italia
British Airways is the largest airline in the UK, with headquarters in Harmondsworth. It is the biggest British airline in terms of fleet, flights and number of international destinations.The airline has offices all over the world. 100 employees work in the various Italian offices located in Rome, Milan and airports where British Airways offers passenger and cargo transport services. The Italian headquarters are in Rome, where the national ICT infrastructure planning and management tasks are centralized.
IP Office Preferred Edition
Call Center Reporter
Avaya IP 1608-1616 series user terminals
British Airways is the largest airline in the UK, with headquarters in Harmondsworth. It is the biggest British airline in terms of fleet, flights and number of international destinations. The airline has offices all over the world. Approximately 100 employees work in the various Italian offices located in Rome, Milan and airports where British Airways offers passenger and cargo transport services. The Italian headquarters are in Rome, where the national ICT infrastructure planning and management tasks are centralized.
What our Customers are saying
"The annual budget that we normally assigned to maintenance for the old switchboard has been cut in half."
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