Rapid Contact Center Support Provides Disaster Relief

When a sudden downpour left residents underwater, we helped the city’s utility department stay connected to tens of thousands of customers in dire need of assistance.

The Situation

In the Spring of 2021, the Midwestern United States experienced a significant rain event producing seven inches of water over a span of four to five hours, resulting in tremendous flooding across the state of Michigan. Sewage and drain systems were overloaded. Residents’ homes were flooded. Highways were deemed impassable, and a major city was placed under a state of emergency. Assistance was needed fast!

Our client, a major city Water & Sewage Department, was appointed as the contact for residents. As the water continued to rise, so did the number of calls to their main customer support number and their emergency line- an astounding 930% increase in inbound call traffic over their daily average. They knew they would need help handling this unprecedented spike in call volume.

The Solution

The city enlisted Waterfield Tech’s assistance in creating a strategy and solution for managing incoming and outgoing communications. Our cloud engineers stepped in to rapidly assess the performance of their existing system. Within hours, our team was able to reconfigure their inbound call routing to more efficiently handle the influx of calls ensuring customers received the support they needed in the moment.

We then developed a suite of proactive notifications and outbound call campaigns designed to keep the community informed of the availability and timing of services. Leveraging IBM Watson text-to-speech technology, we were able to fast-track internal approval processes, reducing implementation time from days to hours. The combined multi-channel solution provided a quick and flexible means of handling the unforeseen spike in calls and reducing hold times while keeping residents informed.

The Result

Our client understood that purposeful and proactive communication was critical to the city’s recovery efforts. And their swift action paid off. With Waterfield Tech as their trusted partner, residents received timely notifications leading to:

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