Inbound customer service call for sports retailer

Ant Marketing were contracted to provide an inbound customer service call handling voice and email solution for a large sports retailer operating throughout Europe. Prior to working with Ant, they had an outsourced European contact centre in Turkey and an in-house UK-based contact centre.


Originally this was a contract for 15 advisors filling a gap in service for the retailer, but after a successful launch we were awarded the contract for their UK and European customer service operation expanding, which we grew in phases from 15 to 150 advisors.

This was achieved over an 8-week period. Ant planned and executed a transition of both channels to ensure a quick turnaround. The team was split into two groups to allow a phased reduction in staff from the clients internal team.


In order to take on services as quickly as possible the team were first trained on email. This enabled them to practice handling all types of cases, but with more time to learn the systems and processes. Once the team were achieving the target handle time for email we successfully transitioned to voice.

During the transition we had Team Managers from the retailers internal team on-site in Sheffield supporting us.

Over the course of the transition and since operating the sports retailers have consistently complimented us on our teams’ handle times and quality of service, as well as our transparent reporting and commitment to the brand. They have now stopped recruiting for their in-house team and Ant will pick up natural attrition as they gradually phase out this resource and outsource all contact centre services to Ant.


The team now operates from a total of 137 workstations, and we are supported by a technology team of three people.

Each Team Manager has a team of 21 advisors, and the Team Managers report to the Operations Manager. Quality is managed by a team of three quality analysts – a ratio of one QA to every 45 advisors. We also have two real-time analysts to ensure the centre is running as efficiently as possible at all times.

We have delivered a number of improvements including; speed in resourcing capable staff, lower attrition rates than experienced internally, decreased handle time for phone and email, exceeded new starter handle time targets whilst 90% hitting 10 contacts (calls/emails) per hour upon completion of training.