Dealing with vulnerable consumers pfd

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Dealing with vulnerable consumers pfd

  1. 1. Dealing with vulnerable consumers28 November 2012#vulnerable
  2. 2. Thanks to our partners#vulnerable
  3. 3. Welcome from the chairJacqui Crawley, KMB Telemarketing#vulnerable
  4. 4. DMA Contact Centres CouncilSteve Smith, trueCall & Elaine Lee, ReynoldsBusbyLee#vulnerable
  5. 5. A bit about us Elaine Lee • Chair of the DMA Contact Centre Council • Working in contact centres since 1985 • Consultant specialising in customer engagement and customer experience • Previously client side managing outsource contact centre suppliers
  6. 6. A bit about us Steve Smith • Working in contact centres since 1985 • Carried out first ever research into nuisance calls – 2005 • Invented trueCall (device to block nuisance calls) • Survived Dragon’s Den! • A driving force behind this initiative
  7. 7. Agenda• The ‘Care’ initiative – the journey so far• The guidelines• Next steps
  8. 8. The ‘Care’ initiative – the journey so farElaine Lee – Reynolds Busby Lee
  9. 9. Background• The DMA’s contact centre council is an elected body of practioners• Volunteers• Produce best practice guidelines for all aspects of contact centre work• Identified contact centre staff need guidance on dealing with vulnerable consumers
  10. 10. Who was involved in the work• Started as a council initiative• Framework document prepared with BT, Alzheimers Society & Rethink• BSI and Business Disability Forum
  11. 11. Who are the vulnerable?People affected by;•Dementia•Serious or chronic illness•Recently bereaved•Non-English speakers•Bi-polar•Armed forces – PTSD•Transitory mental health issues•Real people with real lives
  12. 12. What is the Care initiative?• Practical, actionable guidelines• A starting point for organisations to implement and develop• Our industry is on the frontline of consumer contact• Our members want to treat their customers appropriately
  13. 13. The guidelinesSteve Smith – trueCall Ltd
  14. 14. Who are we talking about?• Dementia• Intellectual, psychiatric, physical, sensory, neurological or learning disability• Serious or chronic illness• Recently bereaved• etcKey issue is that the consumer is not at that time able to make an informed decision
  15. 15. The problemVulnerable consumers :-• May not understand the options that you are giving them• May be lonely and welcome the opportunity to chat to someone• May believe that a sales representative is acting in their best interests• May cave in to a persistent sales pitch• May be unaware of identity theft risks
  16. 16. The problem“My mother of 87 years suffers from severe dementia andnuisance telephone calls have been a nightmare over the lastfive years. Because her loss of memory is so acute, she willagree to any product offered by a telephone salesperson.At one stage, she had five suppliers for her gas and electricity,two holiday medical insurers and as a result of her saying yeson the telephone, umpteen people were calling at the housefor new windows, double glazing etc.I dont know if you can begin to imagine the dreadful muddles Ihad to disentangle. I spent hours on the telephone to premiumnumbers, and as fast as I had sorted it all out, the supplierwould ring my mother to confirm the cancellation whereuponshe would have it re-instated. So I have been going round invicious circles for the last few years. The frustration, time andanxiety that this has caused me is acute.” Anne (Surrey)
  17. 17. Three levels of call 1. Legitimate product / legitimate sales pitch 2. Legitimate product / high pressure sales pitch 3. Scams
  18. 18. All the pieces are in place …• Most companies want to do this right• Most advisors have the skillsBut• Processes and procedures are not in place to support this
  19. 19. Practical tips for advisorsTrain call handling staff :- – Identification – Improving communication – Double check before making the sale
  20. 20. Identification• Appear not to understand even when you have explained something• Ask unrelated questions or wander off topic• Repeat themselves• Say ‘yes’ before you have explained something
  21. 21. Improving communication• Speak clearly• Be patient• Don’t rush them• Guide the call to keep it ‘on topic’• Clarify understanding at every point
  22. 22. Double check before makingthe sale• Sometime ‘Oh yes’ means ‘I’m listening’ not ‘I agree to that’• If in doubt ask them to explain back to you what they think the deal is• Ask yourself honestly – is their ‘yes’ real agreement or just submission?• Ask them whether there is someone else they would like you to speak to about this – a family member perhaps
  23. 23. Call centre management• Train and support staff• Consider setting up a special team to deal with these customers• Give recognition to staff who have performed well – don’t penalise them for taking longer on these calls• Be on the look-out for multiple subscriptions
  24. 24. Training ideas• Young call centre staff may not have the life experiences• Colouring training with real people scenarios
  25. 25. Databases• Assessing and logging the quality of communication• Allow customers to make a personal declaration
  26. 26. Assessing and logging thequality of communication• Allow the advisor to score each call to indicate the quality of communication they achieved on the call• If the quality of communication was poor, then warn call centre agents when they speak to that customer again
  27. 27. Communication assessmentdata• Allows you to identify training needs• Allows you to positively acknowledge advisors who are handling these calls well
  28. 28. Personal declaration• Allow customers to leave a free text comment on their customer record “I, John Smith, wish anyone working in this organisation to be aware that I currently have mental health problems which might affect my ability to make decisions. Please give me some time to think about the decision and call me back at a later date before continuing with any sale.”
  29. 29. Personal declaration• Allow customers to leave a free text comment on their customer record “I am Joan, I am in the early stages of dementia. On some days I will understand what you are saying, but on other days I won’t understand and may repeat myself. Please will you take this into account and call me back another day. I will also find it difficult to understand you if you speak quickly or rush me.”
  30. 30. Sharing information with thirdparties• Understanding when to share and when not to share information• Allowing carers access• Taking a pragmatic approach• Build this into procedures
  31. 31. More than ‘Do no evil’• Used well the telephone is a great channel for vulnerable people to do business • Often have mobility problems • Often are not web aware
  32. 32. Who wants unhappycustomers?• Not expensive to implement• You will get enthusiastic support from your staff• Reduce confusion, complaints and escalations• Makes good business sense
  33. 33. Next stepsElaine Lee – Reynolds Busby Lee
  34. 34. Getting started on change• We’re at the starting blocks...
  35. 35. Getting started on change• Senior management sponsorship• Dedicated ‘desk’• Positive acknowledgement of good outcomes• Share learning from difficult situations• Welcome candid feedback• Good service has its merits
  36. 36. Business process in yourorganisation• Don’t expect perfection from the outset• Make it easy to complain• Human beings can care, machines can’t• Look at how you can take these guidelines and apply them to your organisation
  37. 37. Next Steps• Promote guidelines to industry• Encourage clients build requirement into their tenders• Develop tools such as training modules• Focus groups with Carers• Evolve guidelines with feedback from industry and consumers groups• Roll out to other channels via DMA councils
  38. 38. Thank you
  39. 39. Alzheimer’s SocietyKarishma Chandaria, Programme Manager,Dementia FriendlyCommunities#vulnerable
  40. 40. Understanding the needs of people with dementia Karishma Chandaria, Alzheimer’s Society______________________________________________________________________________________________alzheimers.org.uk
  41. 41. Introduction• The Alzheimer’s Society• What is dementia• The size of the challenge• The Prime Ministers Challenge on Dementia• Vulnerability of people with dementia and the risks to businesses.• What businesses can do to remove the barriers for some of these individuals______________________________________________________________________________________________alzheimers.org.uk
  42. 42. The Alzheimer’s Society• The Alzheimers Society is the leading support and research charity for people with dementia, their families and carers• The Societys fight for a better world for people with all types of stakeholders takes a wide range of forms.• Through our network of local services, we touch the lives of over 30,000 people every week, providing practical services and support• Through campaigning and lobbying we strive to influence government policies and raise awareness of the challenges faced by people with dementia and the people who care for them.______________________________________________________________________________________________alzheimers.org.uk
  43. 43. The number of people with dementia will double in the next 40 years______________________________________________________________________________________________alzheimers.org.uk
  44. 44. Prime Ministers challenge on dementia
  45. 45. Dementia and vulnerability• The declining ability to process information, which results in forgetting PINs and passwords, and leaving bills unpaid• The trusting nature of many people with dementia, which can leave them vulnerable and open to exploitation from strangers• If someone lives alone, with little support from family or friends, their social isolation and loneliness may lead them to answer the phone to anyone
  46. 46. •People with dementia may lose the ability to judge risk and the value of money – common scenarios include making huge purchases over the phone large cash withdrawals, and/or keeping it in the house ‘Staff from the bank always ring asking to speak to my husband, who I have explained is not well and has dementia. I have also mentioned that I had permission to speak to them on his behalf as I had a third party authority access on his account. They would not listen to me so had to get my husband to agree and pass through security before I could talk to them and answer the questions that they wanted. It is very stressful when you are trying your best to handle the situation and they make it so very hard.’______________________________alzheimers.org.uk
  47. 47. Common problems• People with dementia who live alone repeatedly receiving unwelcome or nuisance telephone calls commonly reported by carers.• Carers of people with dementia having to deal with telephone cold callers who routinely target the person• Being repeatedly called to change utility supplier• High pressure sales tactics where people are repeatedly sold multiple memberships and subscriptions• Complex ‘boiler room scams’, involving false impersonation of a company or organisation______________________________alzheimers.org.uk
  48. 48. Potential risks to your business• Organizations can have little understanding of how to pick up signs of a consumer with dementia, or how best to handle such situations with care and respect• Staff may not be equipped to deal with the situation involving a person with dementia, and there is often no policy for addressing any problems that may arise• Despite their best intentions, organizations may not give consistent quality service to a person with dementia.• People with dementia can be trusting and believe that a sales representative (whose motivation is to sell) is acting in their best interests in an advisory capacity this leaves them at risk of being manipulated by unscrupulous operators.
  49. 49. What can your business do?• Ensure that your staff are ‘dementia aware’ and familiar with what the Mental Capacity Act is.• Ensure that frontline staff are alert to the signs that the person they are talking to may not have the capacity, at that moment in time, to make an informed decision• Provide practical tips for staff for communicating with people with dementia• Using other methods of communication e.g. mail• Use industry best practice guidelines and adapt them to your business
  50. 50. Thank you karishma.chandaria@alzheimers.org.uk________________________________________________________________________________________alzheimers.org.uk
  51. 51. BTRichard Thomas, BT Retail Customer Service#vulnerable
  52. 52. Meeting the needs of BT’s vulnerable customersRichard ThomasGeneral Manager, CommercialBT Retail Customer Service
  53. 53. We are committed to improving customer experience for all our customers, but especially for our most vulnerable customers Meeting the specific All customers needs of vulnerable benefit customer groups Making It Improving the Easy fundamentals and Vulnerable •Customer enhancing customers Easy customer •CSDP •Sales quality experience for all •Accessibility programme our customers •Text Relay •Complaint handlingBT is proud to embrace the needs of our most vulnerable customers, and their needs are helping to shape overall customer experience
  54. 54. We live in a changing worldIn 1950 the PSR was In 2000 the PSR was12:1 9:1 In 2050 for the developed world it will be 2:1 Potential Support Ratio (PSR) is the ratio of the number of 15-64 year olds who could support one person 65+ Cambridge University
  55. 55. BT has already adopted many of the principles within the DMA guidelines Guideline Item Status3.1 Senior ManagementSponsorship • MD Consumer sponsorship3.2 Procedures • Already aligned with the key principles - work to do to ensure robust • No general ‘specialist’ team in Sales however we do have a CSDP team • Scoping feasibility of introducing a customer segmentation model based on needs3.3 Staff Training • Making it Easy training rolled out in Consumer Sales (and Outsource) • New entrant training updated – aimed at better understanding customer needs and how to spot/manage ‘vulnerable’ customers3.4 Communication • At PoS we capture customers communication preference and if they have anyNeeds specific accessibility requirements3.5 Post-call • Call recordings observed and assessed on soft skills, understanding customersassessment needs and regulatory compliance – for training and coaching purposes3.6 Personal • Customers can self-declare their impairments if they wish to do so via our websiteDeclaration • This information is recorded in the customers account
  56. 56. Making it easy - Video
  57. 57. We have a strong track record of vulnerable customersupport, and we continue to launch new servicesSpecialist Services Products Innovation
  58. 58. Rethink Mental IllnessClaire Lloyd, Head of Rethink Mental Advice & InformationService (RAIS)#vulnerable
  59. 59. THANK YOURICHARD.5.THOMAS@BT.COM
  60. 60. Business Disability ForumCatherine Grinyer, Director of Communications#vulnerable
  61. 61. Catherine GrinyerDirector of Communications
  62. 62. Business Disability Forum• Not-for-profit membership organisation set up over 20 years ago to help businesses become disability-smart.• Around 400 members from across the private and public sectors.• We support our members and advise on disability best-practice.• Our Disability Standard helps organisations measure and improve their progress towards becoming disability- smart.
  63. 63. Disability, why bother?• Good news – you’re either disabled now or you’re going to live long enough to acquire a disability.• More than three quarters of disabled people acquire their disability as adults.• 1/3 of people 50- 64 years have a disability; 1/3 of all employees are disabled or are close to a disabled person.• Disability affects every part of your business - employees, customers, markets, suppliers and stakeholders.
  64. 64. Business benefits• Disability-smart companies understand the needs and expectations of a diverse consumer base and maximise the productivity and creativity of all their employees; disabled and non-disabled.• Research by Microsoft revealed that even people who do not consider themselves disabled can benefit from accessible and assistive technology..• Spending power of disabled consumers is estimated to be £80bn in the UK and growing.
  65. 65. Catalyst for change• Disabled customers should be able to expect the same level of customer service as non- disabled customers.• We’ve worked with our members and Ofcom to produce guidance on accessible contact centres, ‘Your call is important to us’.• Our best practice guide helps organisations to improve their call routing systems, contact centres and the customer experience of their disabled and older customers.• We’re keen to support the DMA’s guidelines on dealing with vulnerable customers, we believe they are complementary.
  66. 66. Thanks for your timeCatherine GrinyerDirector of CommunicationsBusiness Disability ForumNutmeg House60 Gainsford StreetLondon SE1 2NYw: businessdisabilityforum.org.ukt: @DisabilitySmart or @cgrinyere: catherineg@businessdisabilityforum.org.uk
  67. 67. Panel discussion#vulnerable
  68. 68. Closing comments from the Chair#vulnerable
  69. 69. Thank you for attending & pleasevisitwww.dma.org.uk#vulnerable
  70. 70. Thanks to our partners#vulnerable

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