Perfumes & Companhia doubles its customer service productivity and reduces manual work by 75% with Cleverly
Zendesk + Cleverly
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Perfumes & Companhia is the biggest Portuguese perfumery and cosmetics retail chain. The business was established in 1981 under a different name, and in 1997 the first Perfumes & Companhia store opened in Porto.
Since then, the retailer grew to nearly 150 stores all over Portugal, acquiring multiple other businesses — like the French chain Marionnaud — and earning several customer satisfaction awards along the way.
Perfumes & Companhia was hit hard by the Coronavirus pandemic, being forced to close its physical stores and move their entire sales operation online almost overnight. Before the crisis, the business relied almost exclusively on its brick-and-mortar sales, but since then it has seen online sales soar.
However, its online customer support team was virtually non-existent and those who stepped in were not prepared to deal with this increased volume in online sales and subsequent high number of customer requests. And even though Perfumes & Companhia asked store clerks and employees from other departments who had been furloughed to reinforce its operational support team, it still wasn’t enough to deal with the nonstop influx of support requests.
In just a couple of weeks, there was a backlog of thousands of untouched tickets. Only less than 30% of customers were getting a reply in under 24 hours, while others were left waiting for an answer for two months. It would take either double the team working full time during a month or starting to automate customer support operations to solve this customer support crisis.
Perfumes & Companhia partnered with Cleverly to help its customer service team deal with the backlog of customer queries and build a strong customer service foundation for a future where the online operations are going to remain a significant part of the business.
Cleverly’s intelligent triage was used to automatically classify tickets according to a predefined taxonomy of around 70 categories and to prioritize those customer requests that drive revenue, such as emails from customers who were on the last step of making a purchase but encountered an error.
Cleverly’s technology also helped Perfumes & Companhia configure a set of suggested replies for the most common requests, removing the need for customer support agents to search for or re-write the same replies multiple times. Finally, Cleverly reviewed the one-touch tickets where macros are always used to reply to the customer, automating those so that they don’t even need to be touched by an agent.
With Cleverly’s assistance, Perfumes & Companhia was able to reduce its backlog by 75% by:
- automatically resolving system notifications and newsletters;
- sending personalized replies to non-sensitive requests depending on the topic;
- and automatically filtering out any tickets regarding GDPR concerns, data and complaints, to be addressed manually by an agent.
96.3% of all replied tickets were solved in one touch. The ones that got a customer reply back were prioritized and given personalized assistance by an agent.
By prioritizing incoming requests automatically, agents no longer have to look at a full, disordered inbox; instead they have priority queues. In just one week of using Cleverly’s solution, agents felt less overwhelmed and were able to improve their productivity, handling almost double the number of tickets than the week before.
As for the automated replies, they are now being sent out to 30% of all tickets, with 96.3% being solved with just that one automatic answer.