MIAMINov. 6, 2018 — Sitel Group, one of the largest customer experience (CX) management companies in the world, today announced predictions for the 2018 holiday shopping season to help brands prepare their CX strategies and foster long-term customer loyalty ahead of, during and after Black Friday and Cyber Monday. The National Retail Federation (NRF) estimates that holiday sales for 2018 will increase by 4.3 to 4.8 percent over 2017 (totalling $717.45 billion to $720.89 billion). Additionally, The Conference Board reports that consumer confidence is hovering at an 18-year high, meaning brands have much to gain by delivering consistent, seamless and omni-digital CX during the two busiest shopping days of the holiday season.

As anticipation builds for Black Friday and Cyber Monday, Sitel Group predicts call volumes will soar compared to last year, both as a result of strong consumer confidence and the growing list of digital platforms and devices from which consumers can now place calls, including voice assistants, smart watches, messaging apps and more. Compared to call volumes from the 2017 holiday season, Sitel Group expects to receive more than 3.6 million more customer calls between October and December 2018 (a 40 percent increase YOY), which means brand agents need to be skilled up to handle an influx of calls through omni-digital channels.

“Brands are continuing to develop a deeper understanding of the value of investing in CX support whether it’s in the contact center, on social media or within employee training programs — especially ahead of and during the busy holiday season,” says Mike Small, Chief Client Officer for Americas,  Sitel Group. “As a result, our group recognizes that we need to increasingly onboard and foster winning talent to support our clients in reaching their end-of-year revenue goals and exceeding high CX standards year-round.”

To help brands meet their CX and revenue goals for Black Friday, Cyber Monday and through the end of 2018, Sitel Group plans to hire nearly 4,000 additional U.S. employees (full-time and seasonal) between October and December 2018. Of those, more than 2,800 will be hired ahead of Black Friday and Cyber Monday. In 2018 so far, Sitel Group has brought on more than 14,000 new hires between January and September, compared to approximately 11,000 new hires during the same period last year (a 27 percent increase YOY).

“The holiday season is a pivotal time for brands to win long-term customer loyalty and since we are expecting 2018 to be a blowout year in terms of retail sales, there’s no better time to partner with a company that will enhance your CX strategy,” says Small. “Sitel Group continues to invest in innovative technologies and artificially intelligent digital solutions to help progress our client CX programs today, tomorrow and for many holiday seasons to come.”

About Sitel Group
Sitel Group is one of the largest customer experience management companies in the world. The group is comprised of industry-leading firms providing business process outsourcing, digital marketing, training and talent management, technology and innovation, consulting and analytics solutions.

With subsidiaries such as Sitel, TSC, Learning Tribes, Extens Consulting, Sitel Insights and Novagile, the group’s services are leveraged across geographies, verticals and all stages of the end-to-end customer journey, helping clients effectively harness the industry’s explosive digital transformation and consistently deliver outstanding customer experiences.

With over 30 years of industry-leading experience, Sitel Group’s 75,000 associates service over 400 clients – Fortune Global 500 companies as well as local businesses – through its network of more than 150 offices in 25 countries.

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