At the end of June, the Education at Work (EAW) client development & marketing team stepped up to the big leagues and attended the annual Call Center Week (CCW) conference in Las Vegas. This is the largest U.S. based conference in the customer service and contact center industry. Our primary objective was to host a roundtable discussion session at CCW that would allow our team to explain EAW’s on-campus contact center model to prospective business clients. However, we wanted to avoid the mistake of presenting in the same old boring roundtable format, so we were creative and developed a fun and engaging session.
For our roundtable, the topic about our business model was called, “More than Metrics: How a university based contact center delivers a career ready, professional pipeline.” We wanted to showcase that operating an effective contact center requires not only meeting your metrics, but also going above and beyond with added benefits. One way additional value is created for our clients is a robust talent pipeline, ready to go as students’ graduate. In order to ensure full participation at our roundtable, our team was “all hands on deck” the first couple of days at CCW actively promoting the session by engaging in conversations and handing out flyers to relevant prospects.
Once our audience was in the room, we gave a brief introduction, and then quickly divided attendees into three groups representing the components of our model: Client, University, and Student audiences. During the brainstorming portion of our session, all three groups compiled a list of benefits and concerns they associated with our model. As a visual tool, we designed giant puzzle pieces for each group to write down their responses on.
After 15-minutes, we brought the group back together in the center of the room to readout their puzzle pieces and debrief. The session format worked well as it generated great group thinking and provided an interactive method to learn from one another. This approach also actively involved the attendees in the session, instead of the traditional panel format of “talking heads”. Our partner from Arizona State University, Edmundo Hidalgo, shared his experiences working with our on-campus contact center model. He demonstrated the benefits of a strong partnership between EAW, a forward-thinking university (ASU) and a global online payment processing business client. At the end of our session, we had insightful questions from our attendees and definite interest in further exploration of the model.
Our last takeaway from the event is one of mixed emotion. Even though our team actively recruited attendees to join our session, we were disappointed in the lack of support provided by the conference organizers. Had we not made the effort to socialize our session on our own, it is likely few people would have attended. As a non-profit, we concluded that a smaller customer experience or talent management focused event would be a better use of our marketing budget.
In conclusion, we would like to extend a big thanks to everyone who attended and participated in our CCW roundtable!