On Friday 2nd November 2018 the first ever national UKCCF Awards Gala took place at the Ricoh Arena in Coventry, with approximately 400 people in attendance. Prior to this, the Awards had been regionally based, so to have companies from across the UK come together for an evening of industry celebrations created an engaging and enjoyable atmosphere for all. Hosted by New Zealand born comedian Jarred Christmas, the evening consisted of lots of laughs, applause and anticipation for the winners of the 21 award categories.
“The UKCCCF Awards was a celebration of everything positive and uplifting about the UK contact centre industry. The judges were thoroughly engaged by the amazing stories that they heard, and congratulations must go to everyone who took part and made it such a good evening”
– Michael Gray, CMO of the UK Contact Centre Forum.
For Sitel it was a momentous occasion as they were presented the Outsourcing Partnership of the Year Award for their partnership with Waitrose. The awards were judged by a panel of industry experts and the final submission was presented to them back on the 10th October 2018 in Slough by Sue Headington – Sitel Operations Manager and Doreen Donovan – Customer Business Relationship Manager from Waitrose, with Amanda Webb – Site Director for Sitel Stratford also in attendance. The three of them have worked closely together throughout the growth of the campaign, and the success of this partnership has rested greatly on them having an open and collaborative working relationship.
On the evening of the awards, Sue Headington was unfortunately enable to attend but the team was well represented by Doreen Donovan, along with Site Director Amanda Webb and General Manager UKI, Karl Brough who all took to the stage to accept the prestigious award of Outsourcing Partnership of the Year.
Having been established at Sitel for 6 years, the Waitrose campaign has been a great success, not just in the numbers but also in terms of the relationship between the businesses and the atmosphere created through this for the teams. The extent of hard work and dedication put into creating this success has in turn resulted in the presentation of this award.
“Our success is built on a foundation of a great partnership. This comes from transparency, understanding and respect for the customer, the team, and each other’s business objectives. This foundation has set the path for great success, delivering outstanding customer care and shaping the future Waitrose customer experience.”
– Doreen Donovan, Customer Business Relationship Manager, Waitrose
United in their belief that the customer should always be at the heart of what they do, this partnership between Sitel and Waitrose has also grown exponentially, having started off as a mere 12 agents back in October 2012, to now 130 agents across our Stratford-upon-Avon and Coventry sites, all of whom live and breathe the Waitrose brand and are indistinguishable from the in-house employees, due to the seamless and consistent service they provide their customers. This was the vision – to have a department at Sitel that is as much a part of Waitrose as every other sector of their business, and this is being achieved on a daily basis.
For both parties it is vital that the agents endorse the Waitrose brand, and this has been done by creating a working environment that immerses them in the Waitrose culture. We have aligned recruitment support and on-boarding for all new Sitel Waitrose employees, with joint branded imagery for job adverts and reciprocal recruitment activity in local Waitrose stores. All training and incentives are fully Waitrose approved and the calling floor has also been fully refurbished and branded, with promotional material regularly updated so that employees are always synchronised with what is changing in-house.
Another way in which Sitel and Waitrose have ensured the employees are immersed in the Waitrose culture is by providing them with in-house training, such as “Wine specialist – training to Sommelier standards” and giving them opportunities to go on deliveries so they can understand the full customer journey, taking the learnings from this to better prepare them for customer questions and challenges they may face.
Now having this partnership recognised with the presentation of an award, we look forward to the future working alongside Waitrose, and also to future UKCCF Awards Galas where we can continue to celebrate the many positive aspects of our industry.