Education Partnership North East builds from the ground up with Zoho Desk

About Education Partnership North East

Education Partnership North East or EPNE is a leading provider of education and training and one of the largest college groups in the UK.

With staff dedicated to transforming lives and providing an outstanding experience to students, Education Partnership North East has an impressive number of students securing places at top universities including Oxford, Cambridge, and the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts and Laine Theatre Arts.

EPNE follows the motto of inspiring young people and adults to achieve their full potential, life ambitions, and career goals through education and training, as well as providing an essential support service that contributes to the success of the organization. It is also one of the largest trainers and suppliers of apprenticeships in the region.

Introducing Zoho

Capturing all the data that was flowing into their system and structuring it in a way that each customer conversation could be recorded and worked on seamlessly was the main reason why EPNE decided to move to Zoho Desk. Neil Gray, the IT support manager at EPNE who implemented Zoho Desk for his team, said "Bringing in Zoho Desk was a cultural shock for a lot of staff. Previously who had not been able to instantly check progress of their tickets online, now had access to all updates and entire support conversations."

The Challenges

EPNE’s existing system created scattered data and broken workflows which left them with poor insight about how the team was performing. It was clear the team needed a solution that brought all of their requests together, made them easy to track and resolve, and provided actionable analytics to help them improve along the way.

The Solution

With the omnichannel setup in Zoho Desk, the IT team in EPNE now has a single point of interaction for all their customers. Segregating the team into different departments helped EPNE not just handle tickets more efficiently, it also brought a workflow into their business structure that was lacking before. With the IT department taking care of all maintenance-related questions and the estates department looking into general infrastructure management queries, every customer request that comes into the system is now effectively taken care of.

The service desk team receives the ticket as soon as it is logged and, after careful assessment for accuracy and context, the team assigns it to each specific department. With a gradual increase in the volume of tickets, the team hopes to automate the process of ticket assignment in the near future.

The Benefits

The ability to gauge team performance and bring in a structured way of managing customer requests was a big win for EPNE. Even with ticket counts increasing 200 times in one year, EPNE has been able to cut down their agent response time by nearly 70% from before. With an understanding of what their customers want, the team is now able to plan better and provide a much more seamless experience to their customers.

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