Breckland Council, one of 7 district councils in Norfolk, receives on average 9,000 calls into its customer contact centre each month.
The council’s customer experience manager wanted to explore ways to to reduce some of the inbound telephone and email traffic and increase the support the contact centre team could provide to callers with more complex enquiries, whilst also achieving efficiency savings.
The council trialled using chatbots, exploring how an application with voice recognition could automate the more straightforward queries and interact with callers through a messaging platform.
A business case was written to prove how this concept would benefit the council. Following approval, the council used our Artificial Intelligence DPS to run a further competition and appoint a suitable supplier. The specification included mandatory elements that the bidders must have, and desirable elements that they could have now or would be able to develop.
The council also stipulated that they were seeking not just a contractor but a partner with experience of working in local government who could provide an end to end partnership.
Breckland Council awarded Ubisend a 4 year contract. They expect the chatbot application will achieve efficiency savings of around 30% through:
- receiving less telephone and email traffic
- more queries fulfilled with the chatbot
- machine learning and automation to manage certain email types such as council tax, bins and recycling, and benefits
The contact centre team at Breckland Council will now have more time to focus on the complex queries, improving customer satisfaction as waiting times are significantly reduced and resolution times improved. Due to the success of the procurement the council anticipates that other of their teams may now look at similar solutions to improve their outcomes.
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