Amy talks us through her Customer Operations summer placement experience with Centrica
Amy Meza De Paz
Which business area did you sit in and what do they do?
I did my Summer Placement within the Pay As You Go side of British Gas Residential – they look after all contact for Pay As You Go meters and my role was working on Home Energy Top Up (HETU) – a USB type device that plugs into a computer allowing a customer to top up their pay as you go meter online by inserting their gas card or electric key.
What about the team, who were you working with?
I sat within the customer journeys team, which looks at what different paths the customer has to take. For HETU this included the journey of letting us know they wanted a HETU device, sending the device to the customers’ home and registering it with their computers and our system.
What was your project whilst on the 10 week placement?
My project involved three main elements – reducing call demand, improving customer experience and streamlining processes. By analysing the full customer journey I sought to identify the biggest wins where the three elements intersected. I then partnered with stakeholders across the business, including the marketing team and front line advisors, to create and influence change.
What did you personally achieve?
My initial recommendations achieved a 6.5% reduction in call demand for the HETU team. This came in part from changes in the process of requesting a device online and also from improving the letters we sent out to customers with their device. Both of these changes simplified and reduced the effort the customer had to make in order to get up their HETU device up and running and also reduced the cost to the business.
What have you learnt from being on the placement?
I learnt the importance of a building relationships and understanding what roles different stakeholders play. In building relationships early on I knew who had expertise in each area and my stakeholders knew what I was trying to achieve and how it would be of benefit to them. This meant I was able to make changes whilst on placement but also ensured the longevity of the project even after I had left.
In what ways has the placement helped you now that you are on the scheme?
The summer placement helped me benchmark what I was able to deliver in a 10 week period and how to do this effectively. Now I’m on the scheme I’ve been able to transfer my learnings into a longer role and keep a focus on where I’m adding value.
Any advice you would give to people starting on the customer operations summer placement?
People are the key to all change!