IVR System Enhancements

The coronavirus pandemic delivered a perfect storm to the Travel & Tourism industry virtually overnight. Fareportal was not immune to the rapidly evolving business and operational landscape. Call volume rose exponentially as worldwide travel restrictions went into effect, our Operations team scrambled to meet this unprecedented demand, and companywide our global teams were faced with adapting to the logistics of a new work-from-home norm. As more customers called, our call volumes went up by more than 50% in March 2020 while call wait times skyrocketed and failed to meet company standards.

It was clear to our teams that it was prime time to develop highly capable tools that efficiently meet the high demand and ultimately, our customers’ needs. Our Technology and Customer Service teams worked diligently to create high-value solutions for inbound precision routing to improve our Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system.

Several enhancements were made to our IVR after March 2020. Prompts that reflect our customers’ changing needs were added to support our most in-demand services, and the validation process was shortened to reduce call wait times for more than 60% of our customers. The improved system now consistently redirects our customers to highly capable travel experts who are trained to meet their specific booking and post-booking needs.

Our customers were connected to our newly created, dedicated COVID-19 help desks. Over 25,000 inbound calls were answered, and customer queries were resolved much quicker. Our processes progressively became more streamlined, the high demand was efficiently met, and our customers were even more satisfied with our ability to meet their travel needs.

Security was enhanced so that our customers could safely pay for their bookings through IVR.  Our new security features make the booking experience even more seamless, effortless, and quick.

Fareportal Customer Service Operations Omnichannel Design

An enhanced customer experience is being provided through our omnichannel customer experience where our customers can interact through voice, chat, or our Self-Service Tool (SST). Our teams saw a dramatic 45% increase in customer preference for the self-service options. In response, our IVR system prominently promotes SST so that our customers can make changes to their bookings and apply for cancellations and refunds on their own.

As Fareportal’s commitment to uniting people and places across the planet evolves, new capabilities such as speech IVR will be added.

Employee Engagement Top Priority as Fareportal Launches New Initiative

Fareportal, the travel technology company powering online travel agencies CheapOair and OneTravel, has announced the launch of their companywide “Learn As You Grow” career development initiative.

With Learn As You Grow, Fareportal employees are given access to a wide variety of learning opportunities via online courses.  Participation is encouraged via corporate communications outreach, and staffers’ time during the workday can be allocated to attending courses.

“Companies that provide growth and training opportunities for their teams are more likely to attract and retain talent,” said Werner Kunz-Cho, CEO of Fareportal.  “Our employees have always been receptive to the learning opportunities we have created for them.  Learn As You Grow formalizes our commitment to the professional and personal growth of our global workforce.”

Glenn Cusano, CO-CEO and CFO at Fareportal comments, “As a company, we know that people are our most important asset.  This initiative is another example of the high value Fareportal places on providing our employees with a challenging and rewarding environment in which to work.”

As Covid-induced lockdowns created remote work environments that did not previously exist, the importance of positive employee engagement has come into focus for corporations worldwide.  Interestingly, research shows that employee engagement in the US actually increased during 2020, as corporate leaders stepped up communication with employees in response to the rapidly evolving situation and were perceived as being more communicative and responsive than in normal times.

Fareportal expects to unveil additional employee engagement programs before the end of 2021.

About Fareportal
Fareportal is a travel technology company powering a next generation travel concierge service. Utilizing its innovative technology and company-owned and operated global contact centers, Fareportal has built strong industry partnerships providing customers access to over 600 airlines, a million hotels, and hundreds of car rental companies around the globe. With a portfolio of consumer travel brands including CheapOair and OneTravel, Fareportal enables consumers to book online, on mobile apps for iOS and Android, by phone, or live chat. Fareportal provides its airline partners with access to a broad customer base that books high-yielding international and domestic flight, hotel, and other travel and add-on ancillaries.