A leading global financial services firm’s Americas’ division had acquired several large companies and was in the midst of integrating their IT infrastructures. A key area of business the company desired to consolidate was their customer call centers.
The company’s objective was to build a new customer call center in Des Moines, Iowa and integrate all other US call centers into this facility. This would entail the shuffling of hundreds of existing employees in an existing facility to make room for over 300 new call center personnel. The effort would span several years and require the deployment of new call center technologies. This would result in significant cost reductions in personnel and IT infrastructure and provide a seamless experience for customers.
The company needed an experienced team to manage the customer call center consolidation. This effort posed significant challenges for their IT Infrastructure teams as they were in the midst of parallel efforts to consolidate major data center IT Infrastructures. Key areas that required focused leadership included:
- Deployment of a new Avaya call center solution to enable call center management and virtual call routing to other call centers.
- Deployment of over 500 new desktops and related support processes
- Deployment and capacity planning for new server and storage infrastructures
- Consolidation and capacity increases in network connectivity
- Management of the deployment of new telephony and network infrastructure
- Management of real estate consolidations in an existing facility in order to make room for over 300 new call center personnel
- Close coordination with application, real estate, and business teams
Aeritae program and project leadership led the effort to manage all the IT Infrastructure and related components of this $10M+, multi-year effort. This program was approached in the following manner:
- The first phase of this program required careful resource planning and stakeholder management. Almost a hundred resources in five major locations, spanning virtually every infrastructure discipline, were required to participate in this effort. Therefore, significant efforts were spent on aligning major stakeholders from across the company to ensure a common understanding of the resource and time commitments required.
- The second phase included aligning with key vendors to expedite finalizing technical requirements and designs, initiating procurement processes, and determining lead times for equipment and service delivery. Also during this phase, key technical leadership was engaged to begin solution design planning.
- The third phase of this program included active participation of the resources involved. This work included:
- Real Estate/Infrastructure: An existing company facility held the potential capacity to house roughly 1200 employees. However, it was configured for just over 600. Real Estate and Infrastructure teams systematically ‘re-stacked’ virtually ever floor in the complex to optimize office space and build-out necessary network, server, and workstation infrastructures.
- Telephony/Call Center: Teaming with Avaya, the Telephony team implemented new Avaya call center telephony systems that would enable the new customer call center to allow for virtual routing to backup call centers.
- Server/Network: Various Intel-based solutions were deployed to provide the call center applications. Many of these required new or increase network connectivity to several company sites.
- Process: The new call center solution required that new support processes and bridge processes be developed. This included change management, problem management, incident management and service management processes.
- The final component of this effort was a phased approach to move over a dozen business groups to the new customer call center. Most groups required enhancements to workstation images and the actual deployment of those workstations. This effort would take several years to complete.
The company successfully implemented a new national call center hub into an existing facility, established redundant call routing to other key call centers, relocated and hired hundreds of employees, and integrated numerous applications and job functions in the process.
For this massive effort, Aeritae employees managed the overall program and the major sub-projects. This included ongoing management of the program stakeholders, project teams, budgets, vendors and ongoing implementations.
The Customer Operations business unit had established firm deadlines for each phase of this initiative. As this impacted hundreds of individuals, it was crucial that all timelines be met without exception. Aeritae’s program and project team successfully managed this effort and delivered to the company’s expectations.