Nissan shuns cloud for physical communications infrastructure

Nissan UK opts for physical system over cloud for improved customer service infrastructure.

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Nissan UK has opted for Unify's physical communications infrastructure over popular cloud rivals after bringing its contact centre in-house to gain better control of its customer, partner and dealership relationships.

The carmaker's interactions with its customers are “no longer simple, transactional discussions”, said James Deacon, Nissan UK’s customer services manager. After ending an outsourcing contract with a call centre supplier it wanted to “take greater control” of the customer and dealership viewpoint.

After relocating to a legacy call centre with Alcatel systems, it decided to refresh its communications hardware, phonelines and software in its Rickmansworth centre with vendor Unify. 

Nissan UK customers that have an inquiry or vehicle that needs a repair can expect a speedier service now that the firm has a single view of their interactions with the brand, as it is closely linked with its dealerships. Inquiries and complaints have been sped up as the in-house customer service staff know “more about the case” and can direct to the relevant person through the new communications system, Deacon added.

Cloud was more expensive

The car manufacturer evaluated various systems over five months, dismissing a leading cloud provider for a physical system from Unify, which was less expensive and offered more features like call redirecting. As Nissan have pledged not to burden customers with a premium rate line, pricing was important.

“With the cloud, even internal calls would incur a cost,” Deacon said.

The “substantial” customer services centre was refreshed with phone lines and hardware as well as integrated software including its Siebel CRM within a week.

Interestingly, the call centre’s interactions spike around March and September and slowed around December – most likely due to the average person’s purse strings, Deacon joked.

Relocation

The contact centre will be relocated from Watford to Nissan UK’s headquarters in Rickmansworth soon, to consolidate its departments in the future.

While this project is separate from the ongoing developments in Nissan’s connected vehicle technology, Deacon said that there were “huge developments” ongoing in bringing customer service to the car dashboard and more automated systems.

Last year Renault also revealed a major overhaul of its internal and customer-facing interactions through a Europe-wide Salesforce rollout that would link its systems to its dealerships, allowing it to claw back valuable customer data

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