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business support Archives - IdeasUnlimited

How TravelWifi Went Global

By | Administrative Support, B2B Sales, Backend Support Services, Business Improvement, Customer Service, Technical Support, Technical Support | No Comments

Within 10 years, TravelWifi grew from a London-based portable WiFi hotspot to one that provides fast and reliable internet in 100+ countries. Propelling this explosive growth are the twin engines of an exceptional product and 24/7 customer service through IdeasUnlimited.

Introduction

With coverage in over 100 countries, including many with notoriously bad connectivity like Bolivia and even Iraq, TravelWifi (formerly Tep Wireless) is one of the world’s most reliable portable WiFi providers. Partnering with IdeasUnlimited for support services since 2011 has allowed TravelWifi to focus on expanding its customer base and increasing coverage.

TravelWifi; Global Pocket WiFi

In 2011, the founders of TravelWifi envisioned leveraging the power of global internet to create the ultimate travel companion; one both for avid travelers and for those who merely wish to remain connected when traveling abroad. It was from this vision that the Teppy was born; a portable WiFi device that allowed people to remain digitally connected when traveling out of the country, without racking up huge roaming charges.

TravelWifi entered a market hungry for the sort of device that reliably gave you fast access to the internet on multiple devices, no matter where you went. It nullified the stress of figuring out how you’re going to remain connected while planning trips. The very nature of the device meant that from the get-go, customer excellence was entrenched in device performance and after-sales service. Therefore, soon after launch in 2011, TravelWifi reached out to IdeasUnlimited for taking over some of its support needs.

How IdeasUnlimited Handled Support

In order to meet rapidly increasing coverage requirements and the demands of an exploding customer base, TravelWifi decided to invest in 24/7 coverage for support. Customers could thus reach out and obtain help at all hours of the day. While TravelWifi’s internal team handled day hours, IdeasUnlimited took on night coverage 7 days a week for customer support, tier 1 technical support, and order processing.

A new startup, like TravelWifi in 2011, requires a partner that goes beyond the brief while it quickly adapts services and processes to market feedback. TravelWifi did just that; and found the partner it needed in IdeasUnlimited. As TravelWifi experimented with platforms, support services, and resources, IdeasUnlimited recruited agents for 24/7 coverage, backend support, logistics support, chat and email support.

Throughout the first couple of years of TravelWifi finding its footing and changing training platforms and materials, the challenge for IdeasUnlimited was finding the right agents, helping with training, and motivating them to stay with the burgeoning project for the long run. IdeasUnlimited’s dedicated recruitment team threw itself into the task of putting together the right team that could adapt to frequent schedule changes and new learning material. Its HR management provided incentives, boosted morale, and reduced stress as workers provided 24/7 coverage during the holiday season, and swiftly scaled up coverage for the project as support needs increased.

Enhancing Value through Customer Service

TravelWifi and IdeasUnlimited’s relationship throughout the years has grown and diversified to become a true partnership; one where IdeasUnlimited is part of TravelWifi’s expansion strategies. Today, the services IdeasUnlimited provides to TravelWifi encompass the following:

  1. 24/7 customer support
  2. Multilingual support
  3. Billing support
  4. Technical support
  5. Backend support
  6. Logistics support
  7. Ecommerce support
  8. Admin support, and
  9. Quality Assurance

By drawing on a global talent pool, IdeasUnlimited schedules 24/7 customer support for all of TravelWifi’s customer support platforms. 26 of IdeasUnlimited’s agents are assigned to TravelWifi’s projects. These agents expertly handle chat support, call support, and email customer support 24/7. Customer support is currently provided in 3 world languages: English, French, and Arabic. IdeasUnlimited’s recruitment team recruits bilingual and multilingual agents to reduce training costs and increase flexibility across platforms. These IdeasUnlimited agents take brilliant care of the customer at every stage of their interaction with TravelWifi.

A dedicated scheduling manager makes sure that the required number of agents are available at each shift, even with sudden increases or decreases in the working hours for TravelWifi. On shifts where extra workers are not available to cover increased hours, managers step in and work on the shift to ensure that all customers have assistance.

At IdeasUnlimited, Team Leads, Project Leads, Project Managers, and Operations Managers all keep an eye on the project performance at different levels. Alongside that, we have a dedicated Quality Assurance team, who in their objective capacity as outside assessors, closely monitor calls, emails, and chats. This combination of oversight ensures that each customer service agent has feedback at every step of the process, and any errors are rectified in real time.

Team Leads and Project Leads for the TravelWifi project have come up with a performance matrix, customized to TravelWifi’s brand. This is used to grade each agent’s performance, identify weak areas, and work to overcome them.

The Performance Matrix starts with identifying specific situations where errors occur, then eliminating those errors by preparing the customer service agents for those situations. It pushes the envelope and encourages the agents to strive for greater excellence by focusing on customer happiness within a call or chat. This, in turn, improves TravelWifi’s customer satisfaction.

IdeasUnlimited’s quality assurance team provides a fully customized quality assurance experience to TravelWifi’s projects. Real-time quality assurance analysis has helped TravelWifi as a brand increase its value to customers. It has made customer support and feedback an integral part of the brand, assuring that the brand message going through to customers is consistent across all agents and times.

Hence, TravelWifi and IdeasUnlimited have grown together. IdeasUnlimited has been providing omnichannel support to TravelWifi for years, growing the support operations as TravelWifi’s operations have expanded.

The TravelWifi support project has been scaled up to meet demand; call volume has soared from approximately 100 per month in February 2012 to over 4600 per month in September 2019. Chat volume has risen exponentially as well. Despite this swift scale-up, IdeasUnlimited’s TravelWifi agent support ratings have always been consistently high. That is because the combination of best-in-class recruitment policies, consistent training, and constant project management support and oversight that IdeasUnlimited provides, create a support work environment where excellence prevails.

Here are some of the reviews for the customer support IdeasUnlimited provided for TravelWifi.

Long-Term Project Management; Minimal Turnover

One of the major problems with operating in the customer support industry is the high turnover, which amplifies recruitment, onboarding, and training costs, while at the same time lowering productivity. IdeasUnlimited’s unique remote workforce optimization model focuses not only on hiring the best talent for the project, but also overseeing their work, and motivating them to consider the project they are working on as a long-term career, instead of a stepping-stone.

IdeasUnlimited’s recruitment policies ensure that hiring the right customer service representative for a project is a short process since HR department takes note of the client requirements for any open position and draws on a global database of skilled agents.

For the TravelWifi project, IdeasUnlimited has dedicated workers and management at one of its call centers in South Asia, as well as a remote workforce. The IdeasUnlimited management is responsible for the performance and productivity of talent recruited for the TravelWifi project, in several languages, and across several time zones. Once recruited, agents are shadowed by Subject Matter Experts to ensure that they are implementing the learning material and guiding the clients in a manner best representative of TravelWifi as a brand.

As the agents learn, their performance is periodically reviewed by the Subject Matter Experts, the Customer Support Manager, and the Quality Assurance Analyst. Their performance reviews are directly linked to bonuses, appreciation ceremonies, and other markers of professional achievement. Eventually, they can be promoted to Subject Matter Experts themselves. The TravelWifi project currently has 7 Subject Matter Experts, each of whom have been working on the TravelWifi project for several years. They know the ins and outs of the product, logistics, potential problems and resolutions, and personify TravelWifi the brand when dealing with clients.

IdeasUnlimited’s partnership with TravelWifi across all functions of support covers each aspect of project management. IdeasUnlimited’s long history as a global support services provider has enabled it to fulfill any gaps that TravelWifi needs filled as the business grows and more support functions have to be delineated.

The TravelWifi brand, with added value through IdeasUnlimited customer service, kept increasing its market share and value throughout the years, eventually becoming an attractive acquisition target. In October 2018, it was acquired by US-based DHI Telecom to expand DHI’s international market beyond Sapphire. TravelWifi Wireless now operates as a subsidiary brand under the DHI Telecom umbrella.

In 2019, DHI Telecom acquired South America-based Trinus, France-based Travel WiFi, and Singapore-based Yogofi Mobile Wi-Fi. Tep and Travel WiFi were then later combined to form TravelWifi. The customer support operations of all five brands are being handled by IdeasUnlimited. In addition to this, IdeasUnlimited now handles TravelWifi and Sapphire’s Tier 1 and Tier 2 tech support as well.

In the spirit of complete collaboration and a synergistic partnership, DHI Telecom visited IdeasUnlimited’s call center in South Asia for a training workshop in November 2019. They met the agents and managers working on their project, along with IdeasUnlimited’s CEO.

Freedom to Focus on the Core Business: Support Quality Assured

With IdeasUnlimited’s help, TravelWifi has grown into one of the foremost providers of global pocket WiFi. TravelWifi, by focusing on its core service, has exploded in growth and reached a standard of excellence few young companies can boast of this early in their lifecycle. TravelWifi specializes in what it does best, and IdeasUnlimited assures it of extraordinary support quality. In the future, the sky’s the limit.

IdeasUnlimited looks forward to crossing future milestones together with TravelWifi.

“We would love to continue to assist them in their growth,” says Shahzad Yaqoob (Nick), Founder and Managing Director of IdeasUnlimited. “TravelWifi is one of the projects that have been very close to me personally from the beginning. I have always worked on it as it was my own and also taught the agents to do the same.”

At IdeasUnlimited, we simplify running a successful business by fulfilling all its support needs. We deliver support systems that diversify our clients’ value propositions and increase their brand value. Take this chance to check out all the support services we provide, and, if there is any project that you think we can help with, feel free to contact us. We look forward to hearing from you!