4 Solutions to the Communication Challenges of HealthTech Adoption

Despite significant advancements in healthcare technologies (HealthTech), many providers in the sector are having difficulty adopting and realising their full potential.

TeleHealth, which is shorthand for providing health-related services through telecommunication technologies, underwent a rapid acceleration of adoption when the COVID-19 pandemic began. Since then, the majority of patients have embraced the convenience of digital engagement and virtual care options for enhanced access to personalised, high-quality care and follow-up monitoring.

However, at the same time, an alarming number of physicians and providers have scaled back their use of TeleHealth as they struggle to keep up with the increasing demand for virtual visits and health condition remote monitoring at scale, creating a shift in patient-physician relationships.

Here at Webhelp, we see the same issue across the entire spectrum of HealthTech — consumers are on-board, but providers are often slower to adopt the technology. This trend extends to almost every technology offered within the consumer care and healthcare system, especially software and physical solutions that create new digital diagnosis or treatment opportunities.

We believe that adequate communication and related solutions are the key components to solving these challenges, so this article outlines several strategies for aligning patient and physician perspectives and empowering providers with the full potential of HealthTech solutions.

Virtual training and onboarding for clinical staff

A great starting point is to help healthcare professionals to understand the benefits that healthcare applications and similar HealthTech tools can provide.

During this process, representatives can inform, train, and onboard doctors at their offices, in the hospital or online. Additionally, this is an ideal opportunity to host webinars and introduce multidisciplinary boards into the process – a medical science liaison, for example.

By organising these virtual events through digital channels, providers can understand everyone’s preferences in-depth, monitor the information provided, analyse attendance trends and obtain valuable feedback to inform future strategic planning. As previously reported at Webhelp Medica, providers have begun offering webinars, remote workshop sessions, and social networks intended solely for clinical staff, suggesting that the industry is open to digitising its communication endeavours. Now it’s just a matter of increasing adoption.

Support, training and outreach for patients

As part of this solution, providers could run informative campaigns to build awareness of the different healthcare apps available whilst implementing patient support programs for specific treatments and drugs. Providing motivational calls to help patients understand the benefits of these is a proven enabler.

Once implemented, nurses can teach patients to be autonomous in their treatment, such as administering injections themselves at home. Once the patient becomes responsible for this process, the nurses can carry out continuous remote monitoring, including as part of virtual wards through SMS or other channels, enabling patients to follow treatment and monitoring plans independently in their own homes. When Webhelp Medica implemented a self-injection learning program for almost 3,000 patients, 99% of physicians and 93% of patients were highly satisfied with the approach, highlighting the efficacy of combining nurses with digital support.

These initiatives become game-changing for non-tech users and vulnerable or immobile patients, especially when coupled with the creation of online patient groups where people can discuss their pathology with others in the same situation. Equally, it’s crucial to include caregivers, families, spouses, and patient associations to expand these groups further and provide more support and autonomy for patients.

We like to think of this process as creating “expert patients” trained in their pathology with the knowledge to help other patients with their treatment routines, lessening the burden on clinical staff. It also allows physicians to strengthen their relationships with patients by enrolling them in coaching and learning programs.

Ongoing monitoring to link clinical staff with patients

Once engaging with clinical staff and patients through training, onboarding, and outreach, the monitoring and follow-up process is where the optimisation of patient-provider communication flourishes. By customising patient journeys based on their uptake of technology and putting digital technology at the heart of the follow-up wherever appropriate, clinical staff can vastly increase patient awareness of the importance of care continuity.

While it’s essential to determine whether patients feel comfortable talking with health professionals remotely, virtual monitoring ensures that problems and concerns can be solved quickly, efficiently, and effectively for many pathologies. For example, for psychological and behavioural follow-ups, providers can install a team of remote nurses and psychologists, or even tobacco specialists and dieticians, to follow the patient’s progress and provide guidance and advice via digital platforms or telephone calls.

For tech-savvy patients, there’s an opportunity to apply conversational SMS platforms and social messaging tools to communicate with clinical staff instantaneously. Clinical staff can also automate appointment and medication reminders to reduce the rate of no-shows and ensure patients stay on track with treatment plans. Plus, providing an inbound line allows autonomous patients to ask questions if they have any doubts about their treatment.

In another example, providers could email patients a QR code that refers to an informative video explaining, presenting, and informing people on their pathology, treatment follow-up, and tips for improved well-being. After a teleconsultation, physicians could also automate a message to check in on long-term patients and ask if they have questions about their treatment.

When implemented correctly, virtual wards and outpatient monitoring processes like these bring clinicians and patients closer together, preventing communication challenges before they occur.

Round-the-clock medical information helpline

Another relatively untapped communications solution is a readily available information helpline operating 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. An incoming medical information line can provide patients with status updates on product availability, medication request follow-ups, medical information requests, patient data and held information, pharmacist information, specific questions from a doctor, and pharmacovigilance.​

 

With these four communications strategies and solutions, healthcare providers can improve their relationship with HealthTech, encouraging physicians to share the same enthusiasm for technological evolution as their patients.

Emma Bouché

Head of Healthcare

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Connecting biotech, healthtech and medtech - Webhelp to lead discussion at LSX World Congress 2022

Webhelp are delighted to be announced as an official partner at this year’s LSX World Congress, taking place in London on 10th-11th of May.

The 8th annual LSX World Congress will welcome many industry leaders, from founders and CEOs of innovative start-ups through to healthcare giants. Attendees span various healthcare backgrounds, including experts in biotech, healthtech, and medtech.

Representing Webhelp are Dr Jerome Stevens, General Manager & co-founder of Webhelp Medica, Emma Bouché, Head of Healthcare at Webhelp UK, and the newly appointed Tom Houston, Healthcare – Client Partner, Gobeyond Partners (part of the Webhelp Group).

A keynote panel hosted by Webhelp opens day two of the congress and is entitled ‘The Devil Is in the Data: How the Medtech Sector Is Optimising Its Data Assets and Connecting with Consumers in a Wholly Patient-Centric Approach’.

Jerome Stevens will moderate on behalf of Webhelp, joined by four speakers – Marc Julien, Co-CEO of Diabeloop, Laurent Vandebrouck, CEO of Chronolife, Eliane Schutte, CEO of Xeltis, and finally Ian Crosbie, CEO of Sequana Medical.

The panel will discuss topics such as:

  • Unlocking the full potential of health data, and new applications in 2022
  • Healthcare professionals and patient onboarding, training and ongoing support
  • Information is power: ethical data use and the importance of patient transparency
  • How to ensure data security and demonstrate best practice for Healthcare professionals and patients

 

Commenting on the panel, Jerome said:

“I’m looking forward to joining innovative leaders to collaborate and share our expertise on health data in the medtech sector and the opportunities this creates. With particular focus on optimising and securing data and prioritising patient-centricity, it promises to be an invaluable session.”

 

Keep an eye out for first-hand highlights and key takeaways from our panel discussion.

For more information on healthcare trends read Emma Bouché’s recent article here.


Sanctions, Embargo, Suspicious transactions, PPE... How to ensure the success of an AML/CFT project?

For a few months now, not a day goes by without hearing the words sanctions, embargo, seizure of assets. Faced with an increase in alerts generated by surveillance tools and regulatory pressure, how can the success of an AML/CFT compliance project or clearance of a stock of alerts be ensured?

European regulators and governments are increasing the pressure on regulated companies, which must, on the one hand, manage the increase in alerts generated by surveillance tools, and, on the other hand, review and update their AML/CFT control process. They are confronted with stocks that must be cleared quickly to ensure (and reassure the regulator) that their customers are not registered on sanctions lists or do not engage in transactions that represent violations of the compliance rules in place. These operations are complex and often involve more investigation than simple control.

More than a simple verification – mobilized teams are required to contact customers, gather evidence, compile a complete investigation file, draft, and if necessary, pre-declarations of suspicions to FIUs (Financial Intelligence Units) and, finally, carry out precise reporting to the services concerned. These projects require an established – team of dedicated experts to manage the stock of alerts in the allotted time.

Although outsourcing the processing of AML/CFT alerts by an experienced player is one of the solutions recommended to meet these challenges, it is not that simple. Webhelp has extensive experience in outsourcing these high added-value projects, and has for many years developed strong convictions in key success factors.

Nicolas Dambrine, Deputy General Manager of Webhelp KYC Services, reveals the 5 key factors for the success of an alert eradication project:

1 – Immersion – a prerequisite for getting the project off to a good start

First, let’s look at the start-up phase. This is where it all comes together! The most crucial element of this phase is commitment: commitment of the service provider with the client, but also the commitment of the client with the service provider. It is essential to go to the customer, become familiar with their internal rules, absorb their knowledge and finally, validate with them the procedures to be carried out. Similarly, it is important that the client pays a visit to the provider; to plan and meet the operational teams, but also to pass on their knowledge and objectives on the project directly.

2 – Good indicators – for fine management

In parallel with this phase, it is vital to lay the foundations for reporting from the outset, taking into account the objectives of the project – productivity, quality, budget, compliance – or all four! Each of these objectives must be measured by precise indicators and managed – from the start of the project. This will make it possible to immediately examine the indicators and validate the theories made during the development phase. Moreover, in case of large volumes, having a powerful and well-configured reporting tool is not an option!

3 – The management team – true conductor of the project

The management team is a key factor on two levels. Firstly, the project manager who will be the link between the customer and the production teams. They must be senior enough, dedicated to the project and have a thorough knowledge of regulatory topics. Secondly, the production team leaders. They are the operational relay of the project manager and are responsible for motivating the advisors – who process the alerts and ensure a first level of control. It’s the famous random picking of processed files, which, thanks to the methodical application of a rigorous quality grid, should make it possible to detect any errors that may have been made. Generally, we recommend a ratio of 20% management in the start-up phase, and gradually decrease to 10% at the end of the project.

4 – Motivation – to ensure the success of the project

The project is launched, the management team is in place, the indicators and objectives have been defined – now it’s time to manage production! The first point that contributes to the success of the operation is to make sense of it. This may be true for all projects, but it is even more significant in the case of AML/CFT.
This starts with initial training and ongoing coaching, but motivation is also an important part of the success of the project. In fact, we found on a recent project that incentives had nearly doubled productivity within weeks! This was following a drop in the team’s motivation after a few months of operation, and indicators that tended towards red, we had to react. We decided to set up a challenge with big rewards – meeting and exceeding objectives would earn employees significant prizes. We saw an increase in productivity almost immediately, and the atmosphere of the production platform changed dramatically!

5 – Flexibility and adaptation – to achieve objectives

This brings us to being flexible which is essential and must be applied throughout the project. Here again, past experience shows us that constant questioning, adapting to the results obtained from week to week, as well as to external elements, are all key factors for success.
Test, measure the impact, implement, test again, modify. We are convinced that the processes must be regularly reviewed, challenged and improved in order to always be in line with the customer’s objectives. It’s a good practice that should be applied more widely.

Alert processing projects are complex but also energy-consuming, both in terms of time and in terms of human and technical resources. By deploying a team of experts with proven know-how and entirely dedicated to the client’s project, outsourcing makes it possible to meet the challenges posed by AML/CFT procedures within tight deadlines. Commitment, management, supervision, motivation, flexibility, and more importantly, people, are the guarantors of the success of an AML/CFT alert processing project.

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BNPL can be adapted to B2B... but with some caveats!

Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) has of course become a convenient option for B2C, but its implementation in a B2B context requires many adjustments, as explained by Arnaud Soubien, CEO and co-founder of RollingFunds. Here he is interviewed by Aline Abeya, Sales Manager France and Benelux at Webhelp Payment Services.

We often hear people say: “BNPL is easy: there are many turnkey solutions that allow customers to pay in 3 or 4 instalments”. This is entirely true when the end consumers are private individuals… but transposing the B2C model to B2B, without asking the right questions, is doomed to fail. Why?

For many years now, with many B2C brands, there has been the option to pay in 3 or 4 instalments, without charge, as a private individual. It is also the case that  BNPL  is now an off-the-shelf product that can very easily be integrated into a marketplace type environment.

But it must be emphasised that current solutions are aimed at individuals and for average baskets of small amounts that can be charged to a bank card. From a B2B perspective, however, there are specific factors that must be taken into account, including in particular:

1 – Establishing a relationship remotely via KYC

When it comes to entering into a financial relationship, the law requires that due diligence be carried out to acquire a good “knowledge of the customer”. This is referred to as a KYC, or “Know Your Customer”, process. However, the procedures required to verify the identity of a customer differ greatly depending on the type of customer involved.

Individuals can of course prove their identity with an official identity document, but companies need to be able to prove their existence (with a certificate of incorporation, articles of association, etc.), and to identify their legal representatives (natural persons with the power to bind the company) and the beneficial owners (the main partners). The procedures to be carried out in the context of a B2B business relationship are therefore much more complexand they differ from one country to another. They are based on automated or human controls, or a mixture of the two, as offered by Webhelp KYC Services.

2 – The basket total and the payment methods

In the context of a B2B business relationship, average baskets are usually much larger, requiring limits much higher than those granted to individuals – typically from fifty or so to a few hundred euros.

In addition to risk management issues, the basket total, and therefore the due dates, cannot be charged to a bank card as is the case for individuals, given their payment limits. One must therefore look at the means of payment commonly accepted by companies (direct debits, transfers, cheques, etc.) depending on the target clientele.

3 – The margin on sales

BNPL is generally offered to individuals free of charge: “pay in 3 or 4 instalments, free of charge”. The financial costs are borne by the e-merchant. And the fees are quite high, since they are generally in the 3-4% range at the time of the transaction (i.e. for an average financing period of 30 days, an APR of more than 30% per year). In contrast, the margin on sales for B2B is much lower than for B2C. The cost of BNPL must therefore be adjusted to take this into account.

4 – Risk analysis and management

Unlike BNPL for individuals, where risk analysis can be purely statistical, given the uniform nature of the population and the granular nature of the exposure to risk, the great diversity of companies requires a specific analysis: a CAC 40 company, a medium-sized company, a VSE/SME, or even a sole-trader artisan are not analysed in the same way. Evaluating the credit risk of a company requires specific know-how and a specific model which, in addition to company size, must take into account many parameters such as the company’s activity (B2B or B2C activity), specific sector or location related factors, etc.

But the strategy for deploying a BNPL offer in B2B cannot, and should not, be defined based on these considerations alone. For a BNPL programme to be truly successful and to reflect short- and medium-term sales targets, it must meet two conditions:

  • it must be structured to serve the marketing and business strategy of the marketplace,
  • and it must be flexible enough to adapt in response to future developments.

An international dimension is often present in B2B. What constraints apply?

An e-commerce platform or B2B marketplace will often connect buyers and sellers who are separated by borders. Cross-border transactions require the specific administrative, legal, regulatory, monetary and fiscal nature of the countries concerned to be taken into account, even if these countries are all members of the European Union.

It is therefore important for the BNPL solution to be designed to “integrate” this complexity at a national and international level, in order to protect the marketplace from any risk.

What about specific business factors? Can a B2B solution be standardised?

First of all, I think it is important to remember that, in the B2B world, BNPL has existed for more than a century, under another name, and in another form: the trade receivable, an invoice with a payment deadline. In France alone this amounts to more than 650 billion euros.

However, each sector of activity has its own market practice: for example, payment periods are not the same for the sale of fresh products as for the sale of equipment and fittings. In addition, commercial policies may vary from one company to another, depending in particular on how marketing is conducted , the type of customer and internal procedures.

That’s why, at RollingFunds, we are convinced that a B2B solution cannot overlook the actual nature of the business.

“The specific nature of each sector of activity, and the marketing and commercial strategy in the short and medium term, must be taken into account from the outset of the project.” – Arnaud Soubien

To take a concrete example, that of the fashion sector – where we work in partnership with Webhelp Payment Services – one has to adapt to the specific nature of the sector, in terms of both the countries involved and their purchasing habits and payment methods. Typically, a large order will be placed at the start of each season, followed by small restocking orders as time passes. Other types of business have different customs of their own.

Ultimately, very specific risk analyses and flow analyses need to be adopted, regardless of the business sector.

As an attentive observer of this market, I can tell you that the simple roll-out of a BNPL solution from B2C to B2B, without taking into account the specific factors involved, has always resulted in failure and been a source of frustration.

What B2B financing solutions does RollingFunds offer in partnership with Webhelp Payment Services?

Webhelp Payment Services provides a range of customer relationship management services including billing, collection management and the collection of trade receivables.

As part of their partnership, Webhelp Payment Services and RollingFunds have linked up their information systems to allow Webhelp customers to easily subscribe to a financing offer that is perfectly tailored to their needs.

In addition, RollingFunds provides financing solutions dedicated to the purchase of products and services – which positions us as a key B2B player in the BNPL sector.

For example, a builder can choose to pay the Building Platform, of which Rolling Funds is a partner, for their equipment, on a deferred basis or on credit (the BNPL offer).

Our solutions are tailored to B2B players, whatever the sales channels: marketplace, an e-commerce site, a store network, click & collect, etc. Thanks to our omni-channel approach, customers have access to their payment facilities on all sales channels – just as we do for the Building Platform.

I would stress that our technical solutions are very simple to implement, being based on SaaS and APIs.

The combination of our technology and financing know-how, with Webhelp Payment Services’ 35 years of experience in managing international buying and selling transactions and customer relations, allows us to offer a range of BNPL services with high added value and adapted to the context in which companies operate and their target clientele.

How does BNPL work in a B2B marketplace?

It all depends on how far a project has advanced. Indeed, the strategy for deploying a BNPL offer is not the same for an existing B2B marketplace, with an established clientele, as it is for a developing marketplace.

But, as I see it, the first step is a BNPL offer deployment strategy that is perfectly aligned with a company’s sales and marketing strategy: target customers, payment deadlines, payment methods, etc.

It is our belief that in a B2B context we need to offer a tailor-made solution, one that corresponds to the lifetime of the marketplace, its outlook, its risk strategy, and its financial cost allocation policy. It is essential that the BNPL offer is fully aligned with the marketplace strategy.

It is this ability to adapt that we are able to offer, with our partner Webhelp Payment Services and, thanks to our technology, all without any technical complexity.

The CV of Arnaud Soubien, CEO and co-founder of RollingFunds

Arnaud Soubien started his career in the capital markets. At Crédit Agricole CIB, he worked for nearly 15 years in the structuring of corporate securitisation transactions, at European and international level. After his initial experience in the general management of a Fintech specialising in factoring, in 2018 Arnaud Soubien created the startup RollingFunds, which aims to provide financing solutions to VSEs-SMEs directly integrated into a B2B business relationship.

RollingFunds has developed a technology platform to automate the granting and management of loans for VSEs-SMEs. The financing platform is directly integrated into the tools and organisations of its key account partners, suppliers and VSEs-SMEs.

RollingFunds offers 3 types of funding:

  • 1-click credit,
  • advances on sales or other receivables,
  • the financing of purchases.

RollingFunds has just completed a new investor round with AG2R La Mondiale, CCR, PRO BTP, Truffle Capital and leading business angels, for a sum of over 5 million euros.

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[Sponsorship] Bob Team Boch at the Beijing 2022 Games

Four years ago, Carla Sénéchal and Margot Boch didn’t know each other, but they both had the same dream, that they would one day take part in the Olympic Games. One wanted to break into gymnastics, the other wanted to succeed as an athlete, but it was finally in bobsleigh that the two women from Savoie made their dream a reality by going to Beijing.

Bob Team Boch got in touch with Webhelp Payment Services in 2018, to present its projects and to ask for financial support, and since then the company has sponsored this French women’s bobsleigh duo, made up of Margot Boch (pilot) and Carla Sénéchal (pusher).

The Birth of Bob Team Boch

It’s something of a tradition in the Boch family; Margot’s grandfather and father were both bobsleigh pilots.

Margot started with tobogganing, before training for bobsleigh, and, in 2018, she decided to create a bobsleigh team and contact athletics coaches to find a pusher. One name came out, Carla Sénéchal.

 “It was really an opportunity I had to seize and I didn’t hesitate for a moment.” – Carla Sénéchal

Carla had been competing in athletics for 16 years and, for a long time, had been planning to go into this winter sport, as do many sprinters.

A real partnerships has developed between the two young women, which accounts for the strength of this duo today. The results speak for themselves: during the most recent 2021/2022 season, Bob Team Boch won the silver medal at the European Cup inInnsbruck, while last season it won gold at the Junior World Championships in Saint Moritz and silver at the European Championships in Winterberg.

Today, Margot competes in monobob and two-woman bobsleigh, and excels in both disciplines. On 7 January, this Savoie native won a gold medal in monobob at the European Cup in Innsbruck, Austria.

Top speeds of up to 150 km/h

You need a strong stomach to practise bobsleigh, which can reach up to 150 km/h on an icy track a kilometre and a half in length. In addition, you must be benough to handle this 200 kg unit while controlling the thrust and the piloting and preparation of the equipment. Not for nothing is this sport is often compared to Formula 1, and that’s what Margot and Carla like about the sport – adrenaline and speed.

The first French women’s bobsleigh team at the Olympics

For the first time, the French Ice Sports Federation has sent a women’s team to represent the country in the two-woman bob events at the Olympic Games.

Thanks to their can-do, never-say-die attitude, these two women from Savoie were not put off by initial difficulties, and in particular the financing that needed to be found, because this discipline doesn’t come cheap. To be able to practise their sport and then fly to Beijing, they relied on the help from the Federation and from the Club de la Plagne which has supported them throughout, and called on local companies, including Webhelp Payment Services which has operated in Savoie since 1984; at the same time, they launched a funding call on Instagram.
Just so you know, a bobsleigh season costs between EUR 80,000 and 100,000.

“It was a little girl’s dream to go to the Olympics one day” – Margot Boch

How do we sum up their achievement in one word? ”Wow!” A shared adventure and unforgettable encounters. Thanks to their experience at the Olympic Games, they hope to encourage all young people who dream of getting into this winter sport. Although Margot and Carla have achieved their goal of competing in the 2022 Olympic Games, they aren’t stopping there! The next step is to win a medal at the 2026 Olympic Games in Italy.

To follow their adventures leading up to the next international sports competition, go to their Instagram account @bobteamboch


The changing role of technology in CX

The Changing Role Of Technology In Customer Experience

Technology is a fundamental pillar of customer service design in today’s modern CX environment.

It’s impossible to imagine a customer service solution without technology at the core of the process. However, based on our research in partnership with industry analyst Frost & Sullivan, around 75% of organizations struggle to deploy CX technologies at scale. 

So – while those responsible for designing customer service solutions know that technology underpins modern CX, most struggle with large technology projects. 

So what can we do to improve this?

Firstly, it’s worth examining why technology has become so pervasive in CX. From the traditional post-purchase call to a customer service support line, we are now in an environment where the customer journeys must be designed to build and maintain a positive long-term relationship. Now customers are likely to engage with a brand before, during, and long after purchase. They are often not calling for help or support, they are reinforcing the relationship, and of course, there is now an expectation that every step is tailored to their unique needs. 

CX technologies create the ability to communicate more efficiently with customers, gain more valuable insight into what customers need and prefer, and dramatically improve advisors’ ability to help customers. The gamification of processes inside the contact center is one example of how service quality can be enhanced by increasing employee engagement.  

This means that design thinking needs to be applied to the modern customer journey. We should understand how the customer becomes aware of our brand, how they obtain more information, and how they gradually move towards a purchase. Technology needs to be designed to support and enable this overall journey once the design has been established. 

The changing role of technology in CX

There are several distinct areas to be considered:

  • People: technology can be used inside the contact center to help advisors. It can reduce repetitive tasks, automate processes, and Artificial Intelligence (AI) can be used to augment and support people’s roles – for example, supporting with multilingual service requests or searching for information as a conversation takes place and then advising the advisor on the next best action.  
  • Insight: you can dive into customer transaction data to create insights. What are they searching or browsing? Do their purchases correlate with certain dates, events, or weather patterns? Using data analytics to find patterns in your customer data will allow much greater personalization. 
  • Channels: customers want to engage on social channels Instagram and TikTok. They want to use asynchronous messaging tools like WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger. Outreach to a brand may be via a personal blog, rather than a call to the customer service team. You need to be across all these channels and offer in-app service where appropriate. 
  • Infrastructure and Security: customer service processes are no longer locked down inside a contact center. You can create a secure distributed network of customer advisors that work from home. This can create the ability to hire expertise from anywhere and to build more flexibility into working hours. The infrastructure required to deliver this consistently needs to be robust, with investment cycles well planned. 

Because commuting to a contact center and then working a continuous 8-hour shift has been replaced by a more flexible hybrid approach, including working from home, workforce management (WFM) systems have also become essential to modern customer service processes. Matching your available team to peak times when most customers need help can create more flexible working hours for the advisors and allow the brand to help customers faster. 

Calabrio WFM is a highly agile and scalable workforce management platform that allows the delivery of seamless experiences for customers, advisors and contact center managers—no matter where employees are working. Webhelp works with Calabrio to gain greater visibility into employee performance metrics through personalized dashboards containing the data that can help their performance and allows them to leverage tools such as self-scheduling. 

“In today’s new reality, technology and workforce management are no longer optional. Brands aren’t able to deliver a truly seamless experience without having a seamless internal process too. Calabrio’s cloud platform is perfectly suited for dynamic global players like Webhelp, enabling them to truly understand their CX operations, no matter the set-up, whether it be on-site, virtual or hybrid,” said Magnus Geverts, VP, Product Marketing, Calabrio. 

Designing a modern customer experience is impossible without technology. Customer interactions are no longer restricted to voice calls. Customer and employee expectations have been elevated through technological advancement and the experience of more flexible work throughout the pandemic. 

Technology is now the foundation of customer experience.

It is no longer just a tool for designing a customer service solution – it defines how customer relationships are managed.  

A recent paper explains the Webhelp Anywhere methodology and the Frost & Sullivan research in more detail.  


ccessing CX Talent In the Modern Work Environment

Accessing CX Talent In the Modern Work Environment

Modern customer service solutions need flexibility and scalability.

In fact, 99% of CX leaders say they are important factors. Traditional customer service solutions based in physical contact centers almost always struggled with seasonal peaks – partly because you can only get so many people into an office. Today, seasonality and challenging business peaks are now just an accepted feature of the business environment. 

With competition for talent and consumer expectations both at an all-time high, resourcing customer experience services effectively has never been more challenging. A resilient and flexible customer service solution needs to be delivered at a time when talent is harder than ever to find. So how do we build a solution that delivers the required flexibility and also engages the advisors on the frontline? 

The first step is to think about how and where the customer service solution should be delivered.  

First, what kind of sourcing and shoring will be required?

Naturally this depends on questions such as the level of resilience, and your ability to locate the required skills: 

  • Onshore: the customer service advisors are located close to the service provider, typically in the same country or even the same state or city. 
  • Nearshore: the advisors are located close enough for a day trip to be possible, but potentially in a different country – for example Eastern Europe servicing customers elsewhere on the continent. 
  • Offshore: the advisors can be located almost anywhere internationally. 

ccessing CX Talent In the Modern Work Environment

Then, where will your advisors be located for work itself?

The pandemic proved to many executives that work-from-home (WFH) solutions are not only possible, but can also be secure and more productive. Now it’s time to embrace that experience as we redefine how customer experience is designed. Will you use a contact center or allow everyone to WFH or arrange a hybrid arrangement that is more flexible? 

  • WFH: advisors working from their own home, no location proximity needed 
  • Hybrid: the ability to mix and match, so advisors can work from home, from an office, and even from other secure locations – such as an office rented for a single day. 
  • Contact Center: a traditional office environment for the customer service team. 

By exploring the nine options this three-by-three set of options creates, it will be possible to define your initial strategy. For large organizations, these will likely span more than one box. For example, if offshoring is not appropriate for a particular process then you can compare the merits of onshore advisers with nearshoring and then look at both these choices with the different work location options. 

This approach creates the possibility that you can source talent anywhere. You can build an approach to locating customer service expertise that is borderless and global. It allows you to decide where the customer service processes should be delivered, and based on the role profiles needed for a process, brand, or service – then allows for an exploration of where the best talent is located.  

Flexibility in work location works well for advisors. In our recent research with Frost & Sullivan, 76% of executives said they believe that customer service advisors should be able to choose where they work. People want flexibility and it can be designed into the solution. Without this flexibility it will be a challenge to both attract and retain the best CX talent. 

Locating and attracting the best CX talent today requires the ability to offer flexibility and support. You should engage your teams constantly and center programs around their needs to create an impactful experience. You also need to show that they can develop new skills, at the same time, offering more flexible hours than a traditional contact center.”  Webhelp Group Chief People Officer – Francesca Zanisi

Technology can also be used to help augment the individual team members. Artificial Intelligence (AI) can listen to customers and direct the advisor towards the next best action. Automation can reduce the need to use multiple systems – most repetitive actions can be removed. Tools like Polyglot can help agents to work across different languages – an advisor offering text support on WhatsApp can work in English, even if the customer is sending messages in a different language. 

“Technology now plays a central role in creating a flexible virtual contact center that can be accessed by customer advisors from the office or their home from anywhere in the world. The consistent experience and collaboration that the right platform can provide helps to foster a shared environment for people engagement and service performance. In addition, the various technology solutions deployed in modern customer service operations can augment the role of the advisor and help them to be more effective when helping customers. This also gives the customer more options and a better experience.”

Webhelp Group CTO – Yan Noblot 

Modern customer service solutions need a wide range of skills. The customer service advisor is no longer the only consideration. Network and security expertise is required. Software developers are required to build bespoke solutions and code automated systems. Data analytics and AI is required to create insight into customer behavior and preferences. 

For all these reasons, accessing CX talent is no longer about just finding a steady supply of advisors for your contact center. The solution requires a wide array of skills and people that want more flexibility in their work location and hours. By blending individual locations and using a strategy, you can create the best combination of flexibility for the customer service employees and a resilient customer service operation. 

A recent paper explains the Webhelp Anywhere methodology and the Frost & Sullivan research in more detail.  


Three questions on... Webhelp Anywhere

Robin Harrison, Webhelp’s Chief Marketing Officer, talks through what Webhelp Anywhere means for brands interested in delivering world-class customer service, flexibly and at scale.


What is Webhelp Anywhere?

Webhelp Anywhere is two things: 

  1. It’s a new methodology for designing operating models for customer operations, which are fit for the future – incorporating shoring and new working models 
  2. Coupled with a hybrid-cloud platform to deliver these requirements both today, and tomorrow. 

Ultimately, Webhelp Anywhere helps organizations access the best of the talent and capabilities they need, at scale, to deliver world-class customer experience consistently and flexibly. 

The proprietary methodology creates the optimum design across onshore, nearshore, and offshore and on-site, hybrid and virtual environments, based on an individual brand’s requirements 

The platform is instantly flexible and infinitely scalable. It’s built around 6 integrated modules:

  1. talent
  2. engagement
  3. technology
  4. security
  5. performance
  6. resilience.  

The outcome is consistent performance and a seamless experience for customers, clients, and colleagues.


Why is it important now? 

Customer experience no longer means thinking about a single interaction between customer and contact centre advisor. It means considering multiple channels across the entire customer journey,  the processes which support them, in an ‘always on’ environment. 

To enable the execution of this kind of thinking, brands need to consider the operation, the people, and the technology that underpins all of this.  

To give an idea of the complexity – the Anywhere approach assesses over 50 design criteria to create the right blend of shoring models and new working models based on the requirements of any individual business.  

But there are really 3 core questions that companies need to be asking themselves: 

  1. What does best in class customer experience look like for my business?
  2. How and where can I attract, retain, and develop the right talent to support this?
  3. How do leverage technology, shoring, and working models to drive flexibility and scalability into my operation, without compromising performance or security? 


What do companies need to be thinking about? 

Customer service design had already begun a process of massive transformation when the pandemic put it directly in the spotlight in 2020.  

What we’re seeing now is a major acceleration of this experience revolution. In fact, after 2 years of having to deal with what was immediately in front of them, 92% of CX leaders are telling us they are going to transform their operation in the next 12 months. 

If organizations are going to do this, and do it properly, traditional thinking and approaches will no longer work.


If you’re interested in finding out how Webhelp Anywhere can help your organisation provide flexible, scalable, world-class customer service, don’t hesitate to get in touch.

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Protect moderators well-being to protect your online communities

Online platforms must do more to safeguard the people protecting us from harmful content

Social media has transformed the lives of billions of people around the world through new connections and shared experiences. But sadly, it’s also proved to be alarmingly effective for spreading dangerous content like scams, child pornography, extremism, terrorism, online abuse, and cyber bullying. These risks to the public are real, serious, and well-documented, with a multitude of initiatives in place to crack down on breaches.

The impact on content moderators is gradually getting the attention it deserves, but initiatives are not always up to it – they are the heroes holding the line. These are the people who day in, day out have the responsibility of constantly monitoring, analyzing, and responding to distressing, disturbing and suspect material.

content-moderator-protect-their-wellbeing

Humans enhanced by AI

The sheer size and scope of social media platforms – many of which are reliant on user generated content (UGC) – means it’s unrealistic that all of them could now be instantly moderated solely by people. For example, Meta (formerly known as Facebook) receives three million reports on content every day, flagged by AI or users. And even this brand – one of the biggest on the planet – has just 15,000 directly or indirectly employed content moderators globally to manage reviews, posts, pictures and videos. Meanwhile, a 2020 report by business school NYU Sterna suggested Twitter had only 1,500 human moderators to deal with 199 million daily users across the globe.

With billions of users across both platforms, those sound-like potential recipes for stress and overwhelm. The ideal solution for human moderators and AI to work in synergy. But for now, human moderators must bear the brunt for the online community – because the hard truth is that AI isn’t able to take over the whole job – at least, not yet.

Documents leaked from Facebook in September 2021 revealed that its automated systems struggle to deal with hate speech and terrorism content. One main stumbling block was that although the AI systems operate in 50+ languages, the platform is used in more than 100 languages. Platform owner, Meta, is now developing its own AI system dubbed the Meta AI Few-Shot Learner (FSL), which has been rolled out on Facebook and Instagram.  Its long-term vision is “to achieve human-like learning flexibility and efficiency.”

Creating these AI is extremely complex and tedious as thousands of items need to be accurately annotated for the AI to independently recognize them and act. Meta’s system is already making progresses on this side as it needs to see fewer examples to identify troublesome posts and works in more than 100 languages.

But even Meta admits these are “early days” of what it describes as intelligent, generalized AI models. Tellingly, it also points out: “There’s a long road ahead before AI can comprehend dozens of pages of policy text and immediately know exactly how to enforce it.”

Elsewhere in the market, we see further positive signs of real progress by independent industry providers. These solutions understand context to a certain degree, work in any language, handle informal language, slang or dialect, and learns from human moderators as they work.

Recognizing employers’ responsibility

The current reality is that machines can’t suffer distress from scanning content – but people can. And as global employers, online platforms have a responsibility to safeguard people’s well-being, and BPOs need to support them in that direction. Content moderators are navigating complex legislation regarding the removal of offensive content, working to legal deadlines to remove posts, as well as brands’ SLAs. Not to mention acting on a moral imperative to protect users, particularly in vulnerable groups like children.

But some BPOs have got it badly wrong. It was widely reported that several content moderators at a NASDAQ-listed BPO had allegedly suffered from secondary traumatic stress as a result of witnessing first-hand trauma experienced by others, which tends to result in anxiety, sleep loss, loneliness, and dissociation.

Similarities can be found between moderators and journalists, sex-trafficking detectives, and emergency dispatchers. With common symptoms from these professions developing PTSD-like symptoms, anxiety and depression.

Many moderators face a daily onslaught of disturbing posts filled with hate speech, violent attacks and graphic content. They are offered little to no support or counselling in large companies, and even after leaving, some have developed mental health disorders and they were still offered no support.

Setting the standard

At Webhelp, we’ve invested heavily in what we think is a leading approach to moderating online content for clients, while prioritizing the mental health of our people. That means fully recognizing and putting in place a raft of services and support mechanisms to proactively monitor and address the unique pressures content moderators are under.

As a people-first company, it’s our stated mission to make sure every team member feels happy, valued, and recognized. It’s a philosophy that underpins everything we do. And because we understand that wellness is such a key factor in enabling our employees to give their best, we’ve designed our own custom-built program comprising wellbeing, technology and psychotherapy.

Well-being as a way of working

We learned that well-being was a concern for our employees’, so we implemented more than 80 new initiatives early-2021 – all aimed at protecting our content moderators’ physical and mental health.

A key part of that is being proactive and being able to recognize when things aren’t quite right, or one of our team members needs help.

We’ve introduced wellness centers, where advisors can access psychological care and support – onsite throughout the day and outside of working hours as 24/7 external helplines are available to them. This is complemented by our WebHEALTH program, which focuses on fitness workouts, massages and meditation sessions for all our teams. We also put in place a tranche of preventative mental health programs.

We’re already seeing positive results, including a boost in loyalty and productivity. For example, since launching a scheme to encourage employees to share experiences, we’ve seen a 50% reduction in mental health-related absenteeism. Now, as part of our intention to expand these services, we’re in the process of enhancing our in-house solutions with an external workplace well-being actor.

Psychological solutions

Our state of mind and conscious thoughts have a huge bearing on how we feel physically. That’s why we’ve implemented several, carefully interlinked facilities and services based around psychological well-being initiatives and counselling.

Most importantly, it’s a crucial tool that helps us identify anyone who might be suffering with poor mental health and address any issues as quickly as possible. Whenever needed, we can offer follow-up support ranging from informal meetings with team leaders, through to appointments with external psychologists.

Technology for good

Webhelp is combining human expertise with technology, and this is core to our value proposition.

On top of managing the amount of sensitive content each individual moderator sees daily, our AI-driven People Analytics tool serves a sophisticated early-warning system that monitors moderators’ daily well-being in real-time. The system monitors signs of potential difficulty, such as absence and accuracy and combines this with insights from daily questionnaires to identify even barely perceptible patterns of behavior that could be red flags. The system attributes a ‘wellness score’ to our resources and can alert human team leaders when it becomes too low, allowing them to be ready and well-prepared – if or when they need to step in.

Our number one job

We’re continually developing our technologies, but we can’t foresee a time when machines could completely replace the human touch and expertise of our people. So, we’ll continue to support our content moderators in doing an incredibly tough job.

 

Because protecting them means protecting the whole community.

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Where cryptocurrency meets Know Your Customer

There’s a strong case to be made that, as a society, we are in the advent stage of mainstream crypto. Consider the following three indicators: Firstly, it’s becoming seen as a normal part of our everyday life. The 2022 Superbowl saw over 112 million people tune in worldwide, with a significant portion watching the half time advertisements for FTX Trading and Crypto.com. There’s also been massive investment in Formula 1 and the English Premier League, with ByBit partnering with F1 champs Red Bull, and Dogecoin and CoinJar sponsoring Watford FC and Brentford FC, respectively. 

The second reason is that crypto is becoming much more stable than before. Many cautious investors were previously discouraged by crypto’s volatility and complexity. It was difficult for the average person on the street to understand its purpose or to predict its movements. That’s all now beginning to change – with more providers and greater participation from the wider public, the market has arguably become more stable and efficient. 

Lastly, crypto is becoming more widely recognised as a mainstream currency, making greater inroads to sit alongside fiat currencies used globally Increasingly, major banking services are offering crypto as part of their services. Revolut, for example, allows you to convert your cash into a wide selection of crypto currencies in just a few clicks. Opportunities have spread to other industries, with car dealerships as an example offering crypto as an alternative to traditional payment methods. 

As we sit on the cusp of a new era for crypto, the question we’re asking is – how critical is Know Your Customer going to be? 

KYC in a nutshell

Know Your Customer (KYC) is a fundamental part of an organisation’s risk management practice 

It involves: 

  1. establishing who your customer is,  
  2. verifying their identity,  
  3. building up a risk profiles of the customer, and then  
  4. monitoring that throughout the lifecycle of their engagement with the company 

What KYC Means

Anonymous by design

Crypto, by nature, takes a decentralised approach. It was originally designed and built in a manner that allows its customers to remain anonymous, and protect their personal information from central governing bodies. Anonymity has been crucial to this development since the very beginning – Satoshi Nakamoto, credited with developing and creating the concept, is a pseudonym used by an unknown individual or individuals – and therefore, the traditional rules of tracking customer information do not typically apply. As a result, KYC poses a major challenge for global regulators when it comes to the increasing growth of crypto.

Crypto organisations have been pressured of late to introduce KYC checks in order to be permitted to operate through global jurisdictions. Binance, for example, recently introduced ID and facial recognition checks in order to operate in, and through, the UK. The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has also gone further, cracking down on bitcoin ATMs and ordering the closure of all Bitcoin cashpoints in the UK. For the compliance specialist, some of these restrictions make a great deal of sense in the face of historic and current misuse of cryptocurrencies, as platforms for money laundering, fraud, and financing of terrorism, along with documented links to cyber warfare. 

To add to the complication is the recent rise in popularity of non-fungible tokens (NFTs), digital items – frequently artworks – that are traded for often extremely high values based on their inherent scarcity. In 2020, roughly $120m of NFTs were traded. In 2021, that number was closer to $21.5bn. The concern around NFTs is that they aren’t yet explicitly regulated, and are therefore not subject to the same scrutiny, exacerbating the potential issues around fraud and money laundering. 


Statue of Satoshi Nakamoto, Budapest, Hungary

New world, old solutions

The reluctance across the crypto community to comply with traditional regulation is strong, and its effect is very real. Many argue that it goes against the very foundations of the technology, and undermines the anonymous nature of crypto. As a result of the introduction of KYC measures, some firms – such as Coindesk – have seen huge losses in customer numbers. KYC can introduce friction and cost into the onboarding process, putting new customers off, and ultimately costing the firm more money. 

An additional consideration is whether the regulations are having the desired effect. With a suspected $9bn laundered through crypto in 2021, it’s clear that something still isn’t working. 

Part of the problem is clearly down to the processes and solutions being used, which often struggle to maintain effectiveness at scale as users and transactions increase. This is in part driven by a ‘lift-and-shift’ of traditional approaches to KYC, and trying to make them work in a non-traditional set-up. Another problem is that, unlike traditional FS organisations, in crypto organisations KYC often only enters the process once trading is enabled. This means trading can happen immediately, and any concerns need to be remediated at a later point in time, defeating the whole purpose of the check in the first place; put simply, it does not work. 

Whatever the reasons are, and there are numerous, it’s worth noting that a recent survey suggests that only 31% of crypto exchanges have complete and transparent KYC checks in place.  



What to do?

It’s inevitable, and welcomed, that some form of increased regulation will be introduced into crypto, but what that looks like is still uncertain. What is certain, however, is that if crypto organisations want to continue operating at scale, across global jurisdictions – and protect themselves against the impacts of getting things wrong – KYC should be a key priority for them. 

Contrary to some industry thinking, two things can be true at the same time: 

  • We should be able to live and operate in a world with strict privacy, where pseudonyms and direct, private interactions are possible 

and

  • We should be able to hold people accountable for wrongdoing, finding ways to quickly identify and deal with bad actors 

To do this, we need to ensure the correct balance, designing KYC in a way that doesn’t introduce cost or friction into the customer experience, while ensuring that the solution effectively does what it needs to do. 

By managing KYC in crypto in the right way, organisations will be able to: 

  • Improve customer transparency and trust, leading to greater adoption nationwide and globally 
  • Proactively combat the rising risks of money laundering, fraud and other scams 
  • Continue to improve the overall market stability, allowing firms to scale and grow 
  • Protect organisations’ profit and loss from regulatory and government sanctions. 

There’s no doubt that KYC process are going to become increasingly embedded within crypto, but the key is to use this for competitive advantage through elegantly designed solutions – whether that’s electronic ID verification (eIDV) , automation, streamlined UX or more. It’s all possible, and it’s all up for grabs. 


At Webhelp, we support our clients globally with KYC advice, solutions and implementation. Please get in touch if you have any questions. 

Jonathan Cowey

Business Director, Regulated Services

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