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[CUSTOMER VOICE]: Customer Care at Kolesa Group

How we provide support in Kazakhstan's largest IT company
About the company
Online classifications
Users who submit private ads for the sale and purchase of cars, real estate, goods and services in Kazakhstan and job seekers
9 Сhannels
to communicate with clients
20,000 Tickets
per month
15 People
in the support team
8 Million
In March, our favorite clients from Kazakhstan spoke at the support event for Sasha Shiryaeva. Nigara Kamerdinova, Head of the Care Service at Kolesa Group, spoke about how to help maintain high-quality support in a company with 8 million users, how support affects the product, and how, in six months, support began to respond 6 times faster before her eyes.

We offer a free transcript of her speech. Enjoy!
Nigara Kamerdinova
Head of Customer Care Services at Kolesa Group
What is Kolesa Group
Kolesa Group is five products; in other words, it's five classifieds. is the number 1 auto resource in Kazakhstan. Here you can find everything related to cars. Sell, buy, exchange, and so on. is the most up-to-date real estate database in Kazakhstan, where we can rent, buy, lease, that is, everything you want to do with real estate.

And - this is classified in Kazakhstan. Here you can sell and buy everything that did not fit into the previous two projects., is a business assistant for realtors, a database of listings that they use in their work. And our 5th new product, which was launched very recently, in October 2018, is We opened it in Uzbekistan. It's analogous to Kazakhstan's Kolesa, but only in Uzbekistan.

We have 8.5 million users. For you to understand, in Kazakhstan the population is like the whole of Moscow, 17 million. Therefore, almost every second resident of Kazakhstan uses our products every day. On our resources, you can find 2.5 million ads. The support service receives 20,000 calls per month. 300 employees in the company, and 15 of them are support employees.
Why do users need support?

You could say that everyone uses Classified. The housewife wants to sell her old refrigerator to the big real estate developer who wants to sell his real estate on our site. For example, you want to sell your car; you come to the Kolesa site, submit your ad, it goes through moderation, and, it would seem, voila. You no longer need to interact with this product. But there is a nuance: we have manual moderation, and very fast; 15 people sit and hand-check every ad. The waiting time for each check is 7 minutes.

Nevertheless, 80% of appeals that come in support it is just a question of moderation. As it turned out, people do not understand why their ad was removed, why it did not pass moderation, which criteria are consistent with the rules. Slightly less often, people ask how to submit an ad, how to edit or delete it. And very few technical questions, such as why the payment didn't go through.
How support affects the product

In my opinion, support in Classified implements two main tasks. The first is taking care of the user. Of course, why else is it needed, the support service - to take care of users, answer their questions, help them with any problems, and so on. This is undoubtedly important. But there is one more point that is very important in the Classify. This is what the support service implements - the impact on improving the products.

Communicating with users in support is such a mini-cast devs. By communicating with the user, you understand what he likes and dislikes, and in this way, you can influence product improvement. A year and a half ago, we got a very cool tool called Yuzdesk. It helped us in categorizing the appeals. What we did: we began to label all the requests by categories: calls, appeals in social networks tickets, and so on. Every week we looked at the statistics, did an analysis, and understood how the figures were changing, what causes were increasing or decreasing. Then we discuss this with the product managers on a monthly basis. They know that if users ask you about it, it means that they don't like something. For example, it's uncomfortable to submit an ad; okay, let's revise it. They tested and changed something - and the number of queries started to decrease. So customer service is a potent tool to influence and improve the product.

Here's a real-world example of how support helped with one of the product's pain:
We often get calls from users when they can't find their ads on the site. You submit your ad, and then you're like, why, where is it? And the number of such appeals we have suddenly increased in August of last year - 3,136 appeals per month. This happened after the law on SMS authorization was passed in our country. We had to introduce it on the site, and it turned out that users were reauthorized by phone number but forgot about their old account, which had ads, money, and so on. They logged in using their phone number, but it was empty because it was a new account. And that's when we got a whole bunch of these appeals in August. We figured it out, passed it on to the products, and started working on it.

As a result, you can see on the graph how this figure has decreased, at the moment it is one thousand and a half. We did somewhere we merged offices somewhere we just enabled email authorization so that users could find their office. In the end, support launched new product solutions and helped make users feel good : )

How support works from the inside
A year and a half ago, we had a technical support department - only three people. They processed only calls, no written requests, instant messengers, or social networks. There were no metrics. We didn't measure anything at all. They just received calls, told how to place an ad, why the ad was removed, and that's it. No tools whatsoever. The only thing that was - the telephone and the administrator. No structure in the department. A few people just sat there and answered the calls. Whoever's phone rings - he takes the phone.
What we have managed to set up in a year and a half. Now we are called "User Care Service." Because for us, it's not just a tech support department; it's a department that cares about users. For me, there are two main criteria when selecting candidates for the department - empathy and understanding of what a VAU service is. We don't just promote what we love and care about our users. We have a mirror on every agent's desk, for example. There's a theory that when you talk on the phone, look in the mirror and see yourself, smile at your reflection, the user feels it, the conversation becomes more positive, and problem solving becomes much more comfortable.

Now the channels through which we take the appeal - calls, letters, messengers, social networks in which we respond to all requests and reviews in-store google play and AppStore. Tools yes, helpdesk Usedesk, telephony Line24, and Youscan to track social media mentions.
How to measure user satisfaction
Taking care of users is simple. How to measure it - turn on CSI, and everything will become clear. We measure CSI using outbound calls. We have a whole call center of 20 people. The guys call 100 users. One hundred unique calls, when agents got through, and users gave ratings as a result of the conversation on a scale from 1 to 5. All data is loaded into a regular Excel file, and we have an analyst in the department who displays the average score. Unfortunately, we have fewer reviews on tickets. At the moment, the CSI is 86.5%. For support, which is a year and a half, I consider this a more or less good result. Moreover, most of our requests are negative.
Results of changes in figures
Once we began to measure the numbers, we realized that things were terrible there. In the March tickets, the average response time was 50 minutes. We set ourselves a goal of 20 minutes, and over the year, we got it down; now it's 8.5 minutes. That is, if you write to any of our product emails, you will get an answer in 8.5 minutes.

First of all, it has to do with the transition to the new Usedesk ticketing system. What has it given us? Transparent and straightforward reporting and statistics for the agents themselves. Auto-answers, automation rules, templates, all information about users in one place. The ability to answer calls from all channels (calls, mail, messengers, social networks) and a cool categorization.

Second, instead of a single flow, we distribute tasks in lines, and each group handles its queue of tickets.
If we talk about the calls, as you can see, it's not a pretty graph. The goal we had was 6 seconds.

6 seconds, we thought, was better than the shortest amount of time a user should wait on the line before they picked up the phone. But in July, August, September, something went wrong. The problem was people: we had to say goodbye to someone, some processes were changed, and as a result, we now have 6 seconds of waiting time on the line, but that's not the limit. The goal for the 19th year is 4 seconds.

Every three years, our company draws a picture; these are the plans, development goals that we adhere to and want to achieve, what we want to be in three years. The company also has its mission, has values, and every department also has its mission. Our department's mission is: "we care about the users and help to improve the products of our ecosystem." : )
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