University of Westminster: From First Call Resolution to Revenue

15222132819_08a97144ec_zFirst call resolution (FCR) measures the proportion of issues that can be addressed during the first call. In theory, the more issues are addressed immediately without the customer having to call back or wait for service – the happier they should be.

For the University of Westminster, healthy first call resolution means happier students, which means better ratings in University leader boards, which has a direct relationship with incoming revenue.


IT Support as Competitive Advantage

Students wishing to complete their studies in the UK’s capital have plenty of choice – with over forty Universities situated in and around the London area.

China is also busy building it’s own Universities to attract students from the Asia-Pac region – previously a good source of supply for London, plus reports from The Telegraph suggest that the higher education system is becoming a “buyers’ market for applicants” with students getting record numbers of offers from universities. It seems that supply may be exceeding demand.

“Competition is tougher than ever. We have pressure to increase league table scores with no extra budget,” said Lee Rose, Associate Director of Information and Communication Technology at University of Westminster.

Lee was hosting a press event with representatives from Bomgar and was keen to demonstrate the University of Westminster’s progress with the remote administration appliance.


The Student User Experience

Unlike campus-based institutions, the University of Westminster is dispersed geographically across the West of London with 2,300 staff and over 20,000 students.

“We’re not a Campus,” continued Lee; “Our students expect to come into our institution, to start at a particular time and leave at a particular time. If that doesn’t happen, for whatever reason, if affects their experience. In contrast, students that attend a campus based University can find something else on campus to do during their downtime.”

Fee structures and trends in mobile and Internet technology have been a significant challenge for the University. Lee said, “The moment the fees went up the expectations went up too. The real challenge is mobile; students are turning up with 3-5 devices each. Mobile access has really hit us hard, we’ve had to ramp up significantly with mobile and we’ve had BYOD issues to wrangle with too. We’ve moved from a technology-based business (shiny, shiny) to a user experience led business. Parents and students, especially those from abroad, refer to Times and Guardian league tables which take into consideration several areas such as Entry Grades, Student to Staff Ratio and Student Satisfaction Scores with the latter able to be effected by any bad experiences the student may encounter during their University life – including experience with IT systems and services.”.


Doing More with Less

The University has increasing demands and competition but IT teams find it difficult to ask for extra staff “Efficiency and how you are working become very important. Tools like Bomgar can enhance the experiences of students and allow our existing staff to work more productively” said Lee. Interacting with students online and addressing their concerns immediately means a lot less pounding the corridors of University.

Lee stated their implementation of Bomgar was going well and was being well received by the business. Three key benefits to the University were identified as:

  1. The IT support team could remote control into any device, anywhere. “It’s one of the best tools we have on the service desk because we can reach out to customer like never before”
  2. Bomgar’s ease of use. The appliance has received great feedback from students and staff.
  3. First time call resolution has decreased through remote handholding and IT team collaboration.

The Bomgar implementation included a cultural change in the approach to IT support. IT teams are encouraged to resolve issues remotely if possible rather than face to face, which is very different to how support has been delivered traditionally at the University, but ultimately leads to faster support and a more efficient use of resources.


See also “Supporting Digital Change” in CIO connect.


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