How much hassle, how much waiting and how many manual tasks lie between a first ‘hello’, a completed sale, and the moment the service is switched on for a customer?

If telco and utility organisations make this first point of contact frictionless for the customer and sales rep, the benefit is simple: more sales close, more often. Automation is what will enable companies to leapfrog to this next generation sales and onboarding experience, along with its next generation margins.

Telco and utility companies are already beginning to make automation work from them. Chatbots are saving time for customer service teams, machine learning is helping to generate call-lists, and some organisations are making moves towards a zero touch customer experience.

Sales and onboarding teams, however, probably have the most to gain from automation, AI and smart integrated systems. They’re the ones for whom almost every minute counts – and for whom the seamlessness of the experience can make or break a sale.

 

What many systems lack

By HubSpot’s count, sales teams typically only spend 34% of their time talking to prospects, and most of the rest of their time completing tasks that could be automated.

We’ve seen before with clients that even if an application is quick to complete initially,  progress often stumbles, trips and crawls its way through a company’s systems afterwards. Forms can take time to arrive at head office. Payment details might later need to be re-verified by phone.

Ogi, an ISP and managed IT services company, knew this pain first hand. “Out of the box B2B sales solutions tend not to be fit for purpose for residential sales,” says Telesales Manager Alexander Breverton. “There’s lots of manual provisioning, manually sending customer emails and manually sending terms and conditions.”

So what’s the alternative?

 

Automated systems at a glance

In McKinsey’s report, A Blueprint for Telecom’s Critical Reinvention, the authors argue that  “telcos’ success will hinge on their ability to leverage data and deploy advanced analytics, AI and automation at scale to drive new sources of growth and change the broader economics of the business.”

Similarly, in Salesforce’s report A new chapter of Telco service transformation, the case is made that telco companies need to face up to the constraints of legacy architectures and build something new: “unified back-end processes and increased automation that support slick and cost-effective front-end design and channel experiences.”

Building new sophisticated architecture like this is a process that can take years – and much trial and error. But with Ogi, we demonstrated that it’s possible to configure a tailored, multichannel, sales-focused system in a matter of months, not years – with an intuitive frontend that new sales teams can quickly pick up and run with.

 

A new and inspired team

When a solution enables a sales team to validate, book installation appointments and complete the entire process on the spot, there’s a greater sense of completion. Nor does the sale’s associated commission still hang in the balance.

Sophisticated automation doesn’t just reduce admin time, it also ensures that the right data is in your reps hands, whether they’re on the phone, in the field, or following up on an incomplete web sale.

This kind of provisioning reduces frustration and helps to promote an inclusive sales culture, where telesales can pass a lead to field sales if they can’t reach them, and vice versa.

 

The Ogi experience

 Ogi’s managers are now able to create automated, optimised routes and campaigns for field reps – and their field and tele sales teams have rich data to help them achieve better results.

Their teams can perform contactless sales with very little manual provisioning, booking installations at point of sale, and wrapping up a sale in moments. Everything else automates all the way to its final destination.

“PSI enables us to complete a quick sale in 10-15 mins from start to finish,” says Alexander. “This probably would have taken a couple of days in our previous out-of-the-box solution.”

To learn more, see our case study deep dive into how PSI helped Ogi scale and penetrate their market