Full transparency, good preparation and letting go of the reins

Online supermarket Osuma's collaboration with Connexio has resulted in both savings and room for greater focus on the customer experience. Osuma CEO Carsten Pahlke talks about the pros and cons of outsourcing customer service and what's important to get the most out of the partnership.  





By Bjarke Andersen, CEO Connexio

Osuma is a marketplace where Kvickly and SuperBrugsen sell groceries online across the country. Osuma has both business customers, municipal customers and private customers. Osuma's dialog with customers typically takes place via email, phone and chat, and consists of both customers contacting Osuma and vice versa. The inquiries are divided equally between before, during and after the transaction. This can be inquiries about delivery and sustainability, questions about payment methods, replacement products or anything else a customer is not satisfied with.


What were your considerations when outsourcing Osuma's customer service?


"Before working with Connexio, we had a classic customer service with a handful of employees and a team leader, where we worked with various forms of optimization for many years with varying degrees of success. What we want to achieve is more flexibility. Instead of focusing on training and scheduling, we want to focus on making the customer experience even better. We also valued the ability to ramp up and down customer service capacity depending on seasonality, market development and peaks. We can do that in this collaboration."

"Finally, it was also important for us to get more feedback and advice on customer service. We need knowledge and benchmarking so that we can become sharper on our service side in general."


What were the arguments for and against outsourcing when making the decision?


"You don't have the same direct contact with customer service and individual cases when you outsource. We have tried to solve this by continuing to have an anchor person with us who takes a large part of the coordination and also calls to customers. In addition, we have a permanent contact at Connexio.

"The best argument for outsourcing was the flexibility, but also that it freed up resources to think differently, optimize and focus more on the customer experience."

How has the collaboration lived up to expectations?


"The first huge task in the collaboration was the very low-level handover of customer service. In our case, Connexio is taking over 70 percent of our activities, which was a big challenge as customer service is our most important area. This part went very well and smoothly, as we managed to maintain customer satisfaction and achieve a 10% saving on the entire customer service area."


What's your best advice for others looking to outsource customer service?


"Doing your homework. It's about dissecting your entire customer service and having an open dialog about challenges and what you would like to see. Then it's about letting go of the reins and letting go of control of an important area that you've been responsible for for many years. It's also important to be open to the fact that some workflows and processes can be redesigned or eliminated altogether."


Do you feel represented by Connexio when dealing with customers?


Yes, but it's a real concern that is very much about preparation and trusting Connexio to do the job. When we look down into the KPIs, we have full transparency, and the full transparency really unfolds when the optimizations we have jointly achieved through Connexio are rewarded with savings on our Connexio costs. That's really powerful. 

Watch interview with Carsten Pahlke