We talked to Reece Couchman of The SaaSy People about outsourced customer support and this is what he had to say.
First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
Reece Couchman: Thankfully, we’re staying safe and well! We’ve been lucky to work from home and have many of our items delivered to us that we would usually have gone out of the house to get. We’ve also utilized Zoom to keep in touch with family & friends throughout the pandemic.
Tell us about you, your career, how you founded The SaaSy People.
Reece Couchman: I founded The SaaSy People in November 2019, after leading the support organization at New Voice Media (NVM). I built out the Customer Support function after joining the business at its growth stage through to Vonage’s successful acquisition in 2019, spending time living in the UK and the USA.
After I left New Voice Media, I decided to focus on the ever-growing demand for companies to deliver exceptional customer support experiences. I noted a Walker study finding that by the end of 2020, customer experience will overtake price and product as the essential brand differentiator, which lead to the founding of The SaaSy People. We partnered with businesses looking to differentiate their customer experience by providing world-class customer support, onboarding, and managed services to their customers.
How does The SaaSy People innovate?
Reece Couchman: We continue to innovate in numerous ways, all focused on the customer’s experience. One way we do this is by ensuring all of our communication channels are seamlessly connected. Therefore, regardless of how an end-user chooses to contact us, we maintain the
high-quality approach our customers expect of us. Another way is by working with technology partners to embed support contact methods as seamlessly as possible. When customers need to request support, they can provide the least amount of manual detail possible. Many attributes are attached to their support request automatically via the technology we use.
How the coronavirus pandemic affects your business, and how are you coping?
Reece Couchman: Before the pandemic, we were based in an office space in Central Birmingham. Several weeks before working from home was enforced in the UK, we decided to ask all our employees to work from home. It was crucial to keep our employees safe while providing the same service level to our customers.
Today all our teams continue to work from home and will do so well into 2021. I’m immensely proud of our teammates and how they have adapted to remote working and maintained the vital team-centric & customer-first mindset that is so important in a growing business.
Did you have to make difficult choices, and what are the lessons learned?
Reece Couchman: We had to decide to make a member of our team redundant at the very start of the pandemic due to the immediate impact on our cashflow. However, I’m pleased to say that soon after we did this, the UK governments fantastic Job Retention Scheme (furlough) was announced – we, therefore, rehired the impacted team member and placed them on leave for three months, and they’re now back working with us full time.
How do you deal with stress and anxiety?
Reece Couchman: It’s key to always see the light at the end of the tunnel during difficult times. First and foremost, I focused on our staff’s wellbeing and motivation – the pandemic has unfortunately caused thousands of people to lose their jobs. It has not only a direct impact on the impacted individuals but also their families. It was important to me that as a business, we supported our teams through the pandemic and always remained transparent with them during such uncertainty across the UK.
We partnered with Health Assured, allowing our team members to contact a counselor 24/7 whenever needed, along with four scheduled counseling sessions per year to discuss anything on their mind both inside and outside of work.
Who are your competitors? And how do you plan to stay in the game?
Reece Couchman: We have a small number of competitors that provide outsourced customer support. Our key differentiator is the people we have working for us. Our employee satisfaction is evident via our Glassdoor reviews and directly translates to customer support we provide seven days a week, 365 days a year.
Your final thoughts?
Reece Couchman: Adapting to the new working way is crucial for businesses to succeed, ensuring their employees remain supported and motivated while staying safe.