5 Amazing Back-Office Examples of Improved SLAs/Turnaround Times

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What is an SLA?

Service Level Agreements (SLAs) are a commitment or a promise between a service provider and its customer that defines a set of agreed-upon deliverables. In back-office operations, the most common SLA tracked is the turnaround time or service delivery goal.  Missing this SLA can cause customer dissatisfaction, increased calls into the contact center, and in some cases hefty fines.

A 2020 Aberdeen Group survey of CX and back-office professionals found that only 14% had automated, real-time visibility into SLA achievement, with 30% saying they had daily visibility.  This means that greater than 50% organizations lack the insight and agility they need to reprioritize resources and workloads to ensure SLAs are met.

Why Is Meeting SLAs So Hard?

There are many obstacles in back-office operations that make speeding turnaround times and meeting SLAs challenging, including:

  • Operational Silos
  • Complex, fragmented processes
  • Lack of Day-to-Day Visibility
  • Volatile Work Volumes
  • Lack of automation

Following are five stellar examples of back-office organizations who have overcome these challenges, dramatically improve turnaround times, meet SLAs and reduce costs.

Capita Challenge: Fragmented Processes

A BPO provider worked with a Life and Pensions client to streamline operations. They made process requests, changes, and payouts faster and more accurate. The BPO did not have a means of tracking work across the end-to-end process. So, understanding their service goals was almost impossible.

“There were more than 2,600 customer processes and 1,000 colleagues in the back office across four sites worldwide. Many of these processes were fragmented, leading to a lack of transparency and control. It was a challenge to consistently track a customer’s end-to-end experience from request to fulfilment.”

John Barker, Life &Pensions Managing Director, Capita

The average end-to-end customer experience took 35 days from initial request (contact center) to fulfillment (back office). As you can imagine, customers were not happy. This led to a negative Net Promoter Score (NPS).

By leveraging Verint® Operations Manager™, Capita was able to:

  • Consolidate and streamline processes from 2,600 to 250 end-to-end, customer-oriented processes
  • Fulfill 80% of customer demands at the first point of contact. The remaining 20% were fulfilled within 3 business days
  • Increased overall NPS score by 40 points.
Read the case study: The Capita Story

Mutual Life Insurer Challenge: No Day-to-Day Visibility

One of the earliest adopters of Enterprise Workforce Management for back-office operations, this insurer was drastically missing their service delivery goals for customer requests – averaging 8 days vs. the promised 2-day turnaround. These delays were causing customer complaints and increased chaser call volumes in their contact center.

Their inability to match employee schedules to volumes and to track their inventory of work items against service goals was a key driver of delays.  In addition, the company acknowledged that staff spent an undue amount of time on non-production-related activities. Special projects, meetings, and administrative tasks consumed their time.

However, the insurer lacked a means to track and report on effectiveness of resources against individual goals or customer service delivery targets.

The insurer implemented Workforce Management, Performance Management and Desktop and Process Analytics in order to:

  • Decrease service delivery time by 60 percent, from eight days to less than five days
  • Reduce repeat/chaser calls into the contact center by 30,000 annually, saving an estimated $300,000
  • Attain a 100 percent return on investment in less than one year through the identification and reduction of non-production activities
Read the Insurer’s Story

RSA Challenge: Complex Processes

The Commercial Risk Solutions (CRS) group of RSA, one of the world’s oldest general insurers, sought to deliver ‘best-in-class’ performance. The division has more than 1,000 insurance brokers and services 12,000 customers.

But CRS was being over-run by complexity and unnecessary costs. It found it difficult to cope with the peaks and valleys of customer demand. They needed a new way of working.

“We had no real sense of what people in the back office were capable of achieving. We needed transparency into our processes and productivity.”

Tracy Johnson, Business Change and Transformation Manager, RSA

With Verint Operations Manager RSA gained complete insight into process inefficiencies, volumes, skills, capacity, and demand by the second. They used this unrivalled insight to improve performance and more effectively plan and balance workloads. Their leadership team finally felt empowered.

RSA was able to streamline and speed end-to-end processing, resulting in a:

  • 20 percent increase in effectiveness
  • 40 percent reduction in backlogs
  • 20 percent lift in capacity on average was delivered through process improvements

Wesleyan Challenge: Volatile Work Volumes

Wesleyan provides tailored financial advice and products to general practitioners, hospital doctors, dentists, teachers, and lawyers.  Their focus is to continuously improve the financial advice, enhance the customer experience (CX), and better utilize resources.

The nature of Wesleyan’s business means they are constantly dealing with volatile work volumes. With Verint Operations Manager they were able to ensure flexibility of resources and targets are met. Goals are met even when the team is faced with spikes in work volumes.

Managers also use business intelligence provided to effectively plan their workloads and resources across the various internal teams.

To create a competitive advantage, Wesleyan sought to speed the turnaround time on their medical insurance underwriting engagements. It was able to leverage insights and operational management information in Verint Operations Manager to redesign the underwriting decision process and improve the end-to-end CX.

Wesleyan went from a two-day turnaround time to a six-hour underwriting decision for its customers.  They also benefited from a:

  • 20% cost savings in underwriting
  • 20% increase in team satisfaction score
Read the Wesleyan Story

AEGON Challenge: Operational Silos

Aegon is a multinational provider of life insurance, pensions, and asset management in 20 different country units across the world.  They were long time users of Workforce Management in their contact centers. They wanted the same ability to plan resources in their 500-person back office.

Aegon’s back office was very siloed. Each team in the back-office did things their own way.  Instead of focusing on the end customer, they were driven more by internal KPIs.

Aegon set a target to change behaviors of their managers and focus on the customer. The goal: reduce complaints in failure demand (missed SLAs) by 10%.  They implemented Workforce Management in their back-office operations to more accurately forecast volumes, balance workloads, and conduct resource capacity planning.

Verint was able to automate the input of data into the Workforce Management (WFM) solution, giving Aegon the insight and data they needed on work queues, employee performance, and work item tracking.

Aegon exceeded their goals, achieving a:

  • 41-point increase in NPS
  • 38% reduction overtime spend
  • 22% reduction in customer complaints
  • 27% reduction in failure demand

What Can Consistently Meeting SLAs Do for You?

As these success stories have illustrated, organizations that are able speed turnaround times benefit from:

  • Improved Net Promoter Scores (NPS)
  • Decreased backlogs and overtime
  • Increased capacity to take on more work with same or fewer resources
  • Decreased chaser calls into the contact center
  • Balance resources to demand, reallocating resources as needed to meet volume spikes

To learn more about Verint solutions and how we can help you improve SLA achievement contact us at [email protected].