Customer experience focus rings true as Vodafone rolls out Amazon Connect to support enterprise customers

Corporate and government customer calls are now answered via Amazon Connect by agents in Aotearoa

Vodafone NZ’s largest corporate and government customers now interact with the company’s enterprise support desk via Amazon Connect, an omnichannel cloud contact centre offered by Amazon Web Services (AWS), as part of improvements to its contact centre operations.

Implementing Amazon Connect is a major part of Vodafone’s journey to improve its customer experience and boost customer satisfaction scores, with the propensity to recommend Vodafone (via Net Promoter Score, or NPS) continuing to increase and hitting +40 in April. This further improves on the +30 scores seen in October 2020 that are consistent with the industry average.

Sam Keller, Enterprise Service Desk Manager at Vodafone, says the move to Amazon Connect enables a consistent customer experience for the company’s corporate customers. “Amazon Connect enables us to route calls more efficiently, ensuring that the most qualified service representative answers a customer’s query and delivers the best customer experience, making it easier for our customers to get great support.”

Vodafone started using Amazon Connect in 2020 during the first COVID-19 lockdown in Aotearoa to enable customer service agents to work from home, before rolling out the cloud contact centre across its entire operation.

Mark Fitzgerald, Head of Digital Service and Tools at Vodafone NZ, is pleased with early results and looking forward to getting more customers onto the new technology. “Two years, ago we faced significant challenges with our customer service. We’ve come a long way since then, executing a customer centric service strategy and our collaboration with Amazon Web Services has played a large part in bringing this to fruition. We’ve seen an increase in customer satisfaction across all customer segments.

“One of our early success stories is live chat, when a customer ‘chats’ with an agent online via our website. We’ve relied on this heavily during lockdowns when our retail store team members were redeployed into customer service roles that they could do from home.

“When COVID-19 lockdowns began we had a massive surge in customers interacting with us via live chat. On the old technology platform we saw up to 40% of the chats dropping connectivity, which was very frustrating for our customers and our agents. Since the migration to Amazon Connect, the drop rate is 1%, giving us much better customer outcomes.”

A variety of digital contact methods are being integrated into one system, including website queries, live chat, social media, MyVodafone app, email and voice (IVR), so that all a customer’s interactions are stored in one place. Vodafone has more than a thousand customer service agents spread across a range of locations and relies on technology to join up the various conversations.

“This is really exciting as we feel we are still only early in the journey and are yet to unleash the true potential of cloud services like Amazon Connect,” adds Fitzgerald.

A range of other customer experience initiatives continue at Vodafone, including a focus on creating remarkably simple products and services, plus developing a high performance culture.

Following its own success, Vodafone is now helping other businesses around Aotearoa to improve their call centre operations with Amazon Connect and recently became the first company in New Zealand to be accepted into the Amazon Connect Service Delivery Program. The program is designed to validate AWS Partners that have a deep understanding of AWS services, demonstrated experience, and proven customer success in delivering these services to customers.

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