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Working Smarter with dwell

Furniture retailer transforms customer engagement with Avaya IP Office™ Contact Center


  • Replace an outdated contact center

  • Improve response times and workforce management

  • Enable call recording and training

  • Integrate IVR and connect the center to the stores

  • Provide a platform for a true multichannel contact center

Value Created

  • 100% accessibility rate – every call is answered

  • Enhanced ability to coach advisors and monitor performance

  • Scalable solution to support business growth and multichannel communication

  • Improved call management and store interaction

Furniture retailer transforms customer engagement with Avaya IP Office™ Contact Center

Since upgrading its customer contact operation with Avaya IP Office™ Contact Center, leading UK furniture retailer dwell has been able to not only maintain a 100% response rate, but also improve adviser performance. Better still, the solution provides an ideal platform for dwell to adopt a true multichannel approach as the business grows.

“It’s enabling us to work smarter, not harder.” That’s how Viv Livingstone, Customer Care Manager at contemporary furniture retailer dwell, views the Avaya IP Office™ Contact Center that went live in February 2017. “It’s a massive, massive improvement on our previous solution, for our customers, advisers and for me and the managers.”

High praise indeed for a solution that has been live just a few months. The praise reflects not only the usability of IP Office™ Contact Center, but also the visibility it gives Livingstone and her team.

“I wanted to know more about the calls we receive and how we handle them,” Livingstone explains. “We needed to be aware if we were missing calls, to introduce skills-based routing and have the ability to coach our advisers.”

“Now we’ve got that, our performance is clearly improving,” she adds.​

The Avaya solution is enabling us to work smarter, not harder.

New Premises, New Solution

Livingstone had wanted to upgrade her team from their old contact center solution for some time, and Avaya IP Office Contact Center was her preferred option. Avaya business partner Future Voice had arranged a live demo shortly after Avaya first launched the solution, and Livingstone verified that it would ‘tick all the boxes’. Crucially, unlike some of the other options considered, Avaya IP Office Contact Center could be integrated with dwell’s existing systems – ensuring the change would cost less, and the impact on working practices could be minimized.

The move to new premises – a purpose-built and centrally located distribution center – provided the opportunity Livingstone had been seeking to secure business backing for the change. She contacted an Avaya business partner and a full project plan was put in place.

The new premises would benefit from a dedicated leased line direct into the building, meaning overall speed and network capacity increased by around 400%. The IP Office Contact Center was installed on time for Livingstone’s team to move in. After a brief period of familiarization, they haven’t looked back.

Better Response, Every Time

From the outset, the impact on everyday performance was clear. “Our SLA is that we answer at least 96% of all customer calls within 30 seconds,” says Livingstone: “every month, we’re hitting 100%.”

The key has been the extra visibility that Livingstone and her team have about call volumes and advisor capacity. “We’re only a team of 16, so when the pressure was on, managers would join in and take calls too,” she explains. However, with more accurate information regarding call volumes generated by the system, and wallboard displays showing capacity that can be more proactive, “we have a lot more focus and control.”

Equally importantly, the call recording function within IP Office Contact Center allows her to manage advisor performance more proactively. “I can listen back to calls at a convenient time, and use what I learn to coach the team,” Livingstone reflects. It means she can share tips from her own experience and encourage peer-topper learning for both inbound and outbound calling.

New Premises, New Solution

Harnessing Advanced Capabilities

With the solution operating smoothly, the next steps for dwell involve using more of IP Office Contact Center’s features and capabilities. Skills-based routing is a key opportunity for Livingstone, despite dwell’s small team, as it will enable staff to specialize in different types of calls: another key goal is to move to an integrated multichannel environment.

“We already offer live chat and manage emails,” says Livingstone, “but we want to be able to initiate things in calls and give customers that extra level of assistance and interaction.”

dwell has also introduced a simple interactive voice response system, that means all orders are routed through to local stores, who are better placed to advise customers on product choices. “We just want one option, then you hear a human voice,” Livingstone comments. It is part of a smoother interaction between the contact center and the stores, with SIP trunking now in place to ensure any transfers are smooth and low-cost.


Harnessing Advanced Capabilities

We know the Avaya IP Office Contact Center can effectively double in size. It’s one of the reasons I think it’s a very valuable piece of equipment for businesses of any size: it allows you to build on what you’ve got to meet your immediate needs but also supports your growth.

Ready for Growth

Store interaction is set to become even more important given dwell’s challenging growth targets, which include increasing the number of stores to over 50 in the next 2 years. That’s one of the reasons it was important that Livingstone chose a scalable solution.

“We know the Avaya IP Office Contact Center can effectively double in size,” Livingstone confirms. “It’s one of the reasons I think it’s a very valuable piece of equipment for businesses of any size: it allows you to build on what you’ve got to meet your immediate needs but also supports your growth.”

Livingstone and the team plan to work closely with Future Voice to achieve that. “They really work hand in glove with us: whenever we have any issue or need assistance, they respond immediately. I’ve already recommended them – and the Avaya solution – to two other companies.”

About dwell

dwell was founded in 2003, selling the latest designer furniture at affordable prices. From a single store in Balham, South London, it has now grown to 30 stores across the UK plus a strong online presence. In August 2014, dwell became part of the DFS Group, fueling further expansion and ensuring it can continue to launch hundreds of new products a year and maintain its commitment to personal service.

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