Poundland are a variety store chain, founded in 1990. They offer thousands of products in store with over 1,000 well-known brands in key categories such as food and drink, health and beauty, household, gardening, DIY, Pet, Stationery, Books, DVDs and Toys. Most of what we sell in our stores can be found for just £1. Poundland have over 900 stores and more than 18,000 employees.
Poundland have operations mainly in the UK but also several European countries (Republic of Ireland, Spain and Poland). Poundland are a UK brand but within the group are Dealz (The European operation) and Pep&Co the clothing brand.
Poundland have several departments which take high volumes of inbound communications (Calls, Emails, Social Media, Web forms etc.), including for, I.T., Facilities, Switchboard, Customer relations, Human Resources (H.R.) Advisory, H.R. Payroll and H.R. Administration. Each department accessed different database management systems, CRM’s or ERP’s, often with similar functions or outcomes.
The challenge was to analyze Poundlands current operating model, costs and service in order to understand if the business was getting value for money and/or if there were efficiencies to be achieved by introducing new technology or new ways of working.
In order to achieve the success criteria, set out above we have followed the below process:
Data Gathering – Soniza worked with each central services departments to gather metric data for the project and map out current workflows. By gathering this information, we benchmarked the current service which in turn allows us to quantify success. Each department was ‘reviewed in numbers’ in order to build the foundation of current operations and understand where any frustrations were occurring.
Requirements Workshops – Soniza ran several workshops with each department, as well as workshops with the project team and wider management. This provided an overview of what each department was responsible for and how they currently service customers.
Solution Options – Working with the project team allowed us to present several different options, detailing the pros and cons of different approaches and the commercial and practical implications of implementing each option.
The core options reviewed included:
Adding Contact Centre Technology
Creating a first line triage service centre
Creating a single centre of excellence
Outsourcing first line functions
Each option was debated by the project team which included each department head in order to understand the implications on their subject matter experts.
Soniza created the feasibility/strategy document which provided our recommended approach to achieve the deliverables of the project. This included: a business case, process optimisation, resource analysis and benefits which would be achieved per department.
The benefits that Poundland achieved from engaging with Soniza for this project include:
Expertise – The client was able to leverage Soniza’s expertise in our 360’ review process per department.
Time – Soniza we’re able to objectively review the services and options, saving a substantial delay compared to an internal review.
Knowledge – Soniza’s knowledge of the technology available meant that benefits could be quickly understood and realised.
Experience – Soniza’s experience meant that we could advise where solutions have benefited clients before and where they have a limited ROI.
Poundland has a clear customer service strategy which optimises each department and reduces resolution time for customers.
Poundland now has a structure to reduce operational spend by reducing the number of subject matter experts and using technology to enhance service.
CUSTOMER SERVICE STRATEGY
Poundland has a clear program of workstreams in order to achieve their digital transformation ambitions, this includes: