PME Legend, Vanguard, and Cast Iron are the three legendary premium brands of fashion company Just Brands. Founded in 1992 the company is a well-known brand in the Netherlands, with a strong presence in Belgium, Poland and the DACH countries. As many companies do when expanding internationally, Just Brands decided to integrate its foreign customer service agents in the team at their headquarters. Rick ten Pierick, Customer Care Coordinator at Just Brands tells us about this approach and about the decision to start working with Salesupply.
“We had a small German customer service team in our Amsterdam office and we were in the process of expanding this team due to our growth in Germany. Due to the scarcity of native German speakers this proved to be difficult and costly. After some personnel changes, the German customer service team was suddenly too small to deliver the level of service that Just Brands stands for, ” Rick explains.
A flexible customer service solution for international growth
That was the moment for Just Brands to start looking for a scalable futureproof solution. “Our preference was to keep a small team of German agents in-house, surrounded by an external flexible shell to keep our set-up as scalable as possible. With our European expansion plans in mind we decided to search for a partner that could offer us all the languages that we would need in the (near) future. In addition the service provider should be flexible enough to start in these new markets with lower service volumes. That’s when we got in touch with Salesupply.”
Quick launch in Germany
The partnership started under quite some time pressure, Just Brands needed the Salesupply agents operational as fast as possible. “All in all the project was live within 4-6 weeks,” Rick remembers. “Introducing the agents to our brands and our way of working was the most important part of the preparation. We decided to create an intensive one-week training together with the agents in the Salesupply office in Duisburg - including a visit to our store in Dusseldorf. This week was followed by a day in our office in Amsterdam. This way we had a chance to really connect with the team and to share the Just Brands DNA with them. Since the kick-off we keep on investing in the relationship with the agents, every quarter we organize a day with them in our headquarters and every two weeks we spend a day in the call center in Germany.”
Very close relationship
The training not only helped to really connect the agents with Just Brands and its fashion brands, it also helped to create a direct connection between the agents and the client they are working for. “That close connection is extremely important to us,” says Rick, “We didn’t want to work following the traditional model. We want the Salesupply agents to be in direct contact with us at any given moment. That’s why we start each day together with a short stand-up in which we go over the events of the day before and look ahead to anything special that might occur that day.”
During the day the agents are in direct contact with the team of Just Brands. Whenever they receive a case they are not sure about, they can immediately contact Just Brands to solve it during that important first contact with the customer. “Our service motto is ‘don’t be difficult, just solve it’, so the agents have a large autonomy in fulfilling the needs of our clients,'' Rick explains. “For us the most important factor is to win the trust and with that the loyalty of our customers.”
Another advantage of this way of working is that Just Brands receives updates on a daily basis. This way recommendations of customer service agents can be implemented in the website on short notice, helping to reduce the number of events.
The coming years Just Brands is looking to roll out in the Tsjech Republic and Scandinavia and will further test other European markets. Depending on the expectations of each country, Just Brands will decide whether to start by providing their new customers in these markets with customer service in English or in their native languages, both provided by Salesupply.