One of the UK’s Largest Housing Associations Extends 8×8 XCaaS Integrated Cloud Communications and Contact Centre Using Video Interaction to Deliver Real-time Property Repair
8×8, Inc. a leading integrated cloud communications platform provider, announced that Platform Housing Group, one of the UK’s largest housing associations, will extend their 8×8 Experience Communications as a Service (XCaaS) deployment by adding 8×8’s Communications Platform as a Service (CPaaS) Video Interaction for improved employee and customer engagement.
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Platform Housing, which brings together Waterloo Housing and Fortis Living, is one of the largest housing associations in the UK Midlands, with around 1,200 staff, over 120,000 customers and 45,000 homes. It implemented the 8×8 XCaaS integrated cloud contact centre and communications platform to digitally transform the organisation, ensure business resiliency, and enable its hybrid workforce to communicate, collaborate and engage from anywhere on any device.
In order to drive deeper benefits across the organisation, Platform Housing Group’s property maintenance subsidiary, Platform Property Care, conducted a pilot project to extend 8×8 XCaaS with 8×8 Video Interaction to further enhance employee and customer engagements. Platform Property Care employs more than 300 people to provide property maintenance and compliance activities, including gas and electricity servicing, for all its customers and properties.
During a month-long evaluation, the organisation offered a live video option during customer calls to help resolve property repair issues. Interacting over video with customers was a simple and easy process:
- While on a customer call, property maintenance and support tradespeople can start a video interaction by sending an SMS message to the customer’s mobile phone.
- Customers opt in to start a video interaction with a simple click – no application download or account registration required.
- Using the two-way video experience, customers can show trouble areas to the support staff. The real-time video capability enabled staff to better help customers through a remote repair.
- Photos can also be taken and annotated by both the customer and support team with all pictures, notes and location details automatically saved into the organisation’s 8×8 Contact Centre and Microsoft Dynamics 365 systems for future reference.
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Lee Vernalls, Assistant Director – Business Development and Growth at Platform Property Care explained, “8×8 Video Interaction allowed our operatives to conduct a two-way video call with customers so that any repairs could either be seen prior to a visit or fixed remotely. Crucially, when a remote fix was not possible, we had customer photos in our interaction records, and could make sure the correct materials were available when our tradespeople went on site to repair the problem.”
Results from Platform Property Care’s pilot were encouraging with 39 percent of calls resulting in a remote repair, and another 26 percent reducing the need for an initial inspection visit. Vernalls added: “The 8×8 Video Interaction solution drove a number of positive outcomes, including improved customer experience, a reduction in the number of home visits, and more availability for our staff to handle jobs which require a physical presence. We look forward to deploying this capability across the organisation to increase first call resolution and optimizing employee and customer interactions.”
Matt Bell, EMEA Vice President of CPaaS Sales said, “Organisations are reimagining both employee and customer engagement to adapt to the unique challenges posed by a distributed workforce and a mobile-first customer base. Extending 8×8 XCaaS with real-time video interaction capabilities allows Platform Housing Group to deliver an even higher level of service and support for their customers.”