Case study

Berry Bros. & Rudd

UK’s oldest wine and spirit merchant moves its customer service centre to the cloud and transforms its communications with Olive.

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Retail

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About Berry Bros. & Rudd

Berry Bros. & Rudd is globally renowned for being Britain’s oldest wine and spirit merchant, trading from the same shop since 1698. Yet its approach to technology has always been streets ahead of its time. A leader in digital transformation, the award-winning, family-owned and managed company was the first wine merchant in the UK to launch a website and to trade goods online, adapting to the needs of an emerging digital society.

Today the company operates globally, with offices in Japan, Singapore and Hong Kong, a Wine School and an exclusive fine wine and dining venue in London’s St James’s.

Berry Bros. & Rudd is an innovative company, always looking to make process driven improvements to enhance its customer service through new technology – it’s a company that embraces change for the better.

Chris Brown
Head of Service Delivery | Berry Bros. & Rudd

Chris continues, “Berry Bros. & Rudd is renowned for quality; offering the best, most diverse range of wines and spirits around the world and providing customers with the most extensive wine knowledge of any merchant. Reputation is everything to our business, so it’s fundamental that our customer experience always reflects the brand’s high standards and excellence.

berry-bros-exterior shot

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The Challenge

With two high street stores, one based on the prestigious Pall Mall, the majority of our customers engage with the brand through the website, account managers and customer support teams.

These communication channels needed transforming to meet the expectations of today’s digital and ‘mobile first’ customer, who expect queries to be handled efficiently and in a way that’s convenient for them.

Chris Brown
Head of Service Delivery | Berry Bros. & Rudd

In January 2017 Berry Bros. & Rudd approached Olive, who conducted an initial consultancy review to identify the key transformational improvements that would be required to better digitalise and mobilise the business, enhance the customer experience, and provide a positive and seamless customer journey.

Berry Bros. & Rudd invested over half a million pounds as part of an internal and external communications transformation project and in March 2018, Olive was contracted to implement the bespoke Olive CMSP (Cloud Managed Service Platform) in a phased approach of three to six months with the final phase due for completion at the end of 2019.

Olive’s CMSP incorporates a Cloud Contact Centre, Unified Communications, Cloud Connectivity and Mobility Services, all supported by Customer Experience Consultancy, Cloud Service Design and ongoing managed support services.

The new CMSP - delivered from the UK and supporting internationally roaming employees - supports three UK Berry Bros. & Rudd offices consisting of 55 customer facing employees including the Fine Wine advisory and customer service team, 200 back office staff and 150 mobile users.

Reputation is everything to our business, so it’s fundamental that our customer experience always reflects the brand’s high standards and excellence.

Chris Brown
Head of Service Delivery | Berry Bros. & Rudd

wine from berry bros being poured into a glass

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The Collaborative Contact Centre

Utilising Mitel contact centre technology, Olive implemented a scalable 24/7 managed Cloud Telephony Platform across a period of six months. The most challenging aspect of the project was understanding and porting legacy number ranges in a seamless manner and in a way which was as least disruptive as possible, something achieved through support of the Olive project team. In doing so, Berry Bros. &. Rudd’s customer contact centre team are now able to work in collaboration with its credit management and credit identification team for a totally unified and seamless customer journey.

When we first engaged with Olive we had no one single view of our customer or way of managing call volumes, which meant we were not aligned in our customer communications or providing a customer journey that was consistently efficient.

Now customers and their data are easily transferred between the contact centre and the credit management team if needed, such as when setting up a new account or they have a purchasing query, making the entire customer experience faster and smoother.

Chris Brown
Head of Service Delivery | Berry Bros. & Rudd

“Call queue times have also been reduced thanks to a new call back facility and agent skills routing and the new Cloud Telephony Platform’s centralised CRM system tracks incoming calls and provides call volume data,” adds Chris. “The Workforce Management functionality within the platform calculates volume against resource needed. This makes it easier to accurately plan, forecast and schedule internal resource especially around peak times, including seasonal peaks such as Christmas, to ensure there’s enough operators available to consistently and efficiently support the amount of incoming customer calls,”

“For example, in the run up to Christmas call volumes tend to rise by over 100% with people stocking up for celebrations or seeking our expert wine knowledge. With the new system we have managed to absorb the increase in calls and at the same time halve the call abandon rate.”

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Empowering the Mobile Workforce

A disjointed mobile and traditional landline telephony system was also impacting customer service delivery and causing frustration to the 30% of the company’s mobile workforce who were unable to take incoming landline desk calls from customers when roaming between offices in the UK and overseas.

Olive converged Berry Bros. & Rudd’s mobile and traditional fixed voice platforms using Vodafone Mobile Business technology, liberating and empowering its remote workforce to be contactable any-where and anytime via any device.

“Our mobile workforce have close, regular contact with their clients with many wanting to place orders for cases of wine, so on occasion when employees were working remotely, away from the office and couldn’t be reached, this was having a detrimental impact on sales and customer relations. This is no longer an issue,” adds Chris.

The service and support we’ve had from Olive has been excellent from the start. Moving to the cloud and converging our telephony systems has given us the flexibility and scope our global business requires to grow, as well as vastly improving our overall offering to better serve our global customers.

Chris Brown
Head of Service Delivery | Berry Bros. & Rudd

corks from berry bros wine

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The Benefits

“Since migrating to Olive’s cloud platform productivity has improved, sales have risen and we now have access to a consistent business dashboard with consolidated management information across all channels of communications,” continues Chris.

The service and support we’ve had from Olive has been excellent from the start. Moving to the cloud and converging our telephony systems has given us the flexibility and scope our global business requires to grow, as well as vastly improving our overall offering to better serve our global customers. Olive implemented the system cost effectively and with great ease and speed, and we’re delighted to have their ongoing support as we enter the busy festive season.

Andy Jane, CTO at Olive adds “It’s a privilege to work with Berry Bros. & Rudd, a prestigious and historic British company that has a loyal and fast-growing global customer base. Olive’s best of breed service in partnership with Vodafone and Mitel is designed to deliver a game changing, centralised cloud and unified communications solution that delivers proven ROI.

Through the implementation of Olive CMSP and our ‘Adopt – Adapt – Transform’ practical methodology, Berry Bros. & Rudd now have access to modern cloud capabilities, including digital customer engagement tools to increase productivity and take the business forward, and a platform that will enable the company to accelerate its growth and innovation plans.

The ongoing consultancy that we provide also allows for flexibility and greater agility and for Olive to deliver upgrades and solutions as and when the business requires.

Andy Jane
CTO | Olive

Once the final phase of Olive’s CMSP integration is implemented, Berry Bros. & Rudd plan to take advantage of the platform’s scalability. By building on the platform’s ‘mix and match’ technical capabilities the award-winning wine and spirit merchant will facilitate further change and drive additional business growth by looking at what the next steps in its communications journey are; building on its other innovative digital transformation projects.

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