Rewarding: How an airline call center should be operated

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Etihad Airways has been honored with two accolades at the INSIGHTS Middle East Call Centre Awards 2015.

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Etihad Airways has been honored with two accolades at the INSIGHTS Middle East Call Centre Awards 2015. This is the fourth consecutive year in which the airline has been recognized at the annual gala ceremony, which was held in Dubai on May 12 and was attended by almost 300 call center professionals and service providers from across the Middle East.

The airline received the awards for ‘Best Industry Call Centre (Airline)’ for its Al Ain Contact Centre, and for ‘Best Career and Skills Path’ for its Team Leader Passport program.

Peter Baumgartner, Etihad Airways Chief Commercial Officer, said: “Once again, this modern, world-class facility has been recognised for its professionalism, superior levels of customer service, and its intensive program of career development and training. Mirroring the huge strides Etihad Airways is taking, a progressive centre of this kind is a crucial tool in our efforts to provide a remarkable guest experience.

“We continue to push forward with our drive to develop Emirati talent within our contact centre teams. Our Al Ain Contact Centre provides a unique environment where Emirati women can increase their skills and receive career development, while continuing to maintain a healthy work/home balance. We currently employ 143 Emirati staff at this facility. In 2014 we opened an additional wing of the award-winning Al Ain centre and now have over 200 employees working there, who last year answered over one million calls.

“Our aim is to continue this momentum and to encourage more Emiratis to join this valued team of skilled individuals.”

Together with Etihad Airways’ two other contact centres located in Abu Dhabi and Manchester, the airline employs almost 600 call centre personnel, who in 2014 answered 2.6 million calls, in 15 different languages across 39 markets around the world.

The Team Leader Passport program is an 18-month to two-year team leader development journey featuring 11 distinct learning interventions, including management effectiveness, leadership and motivation, and advance system skills refresher training. There are currently 52 team leaders undergoing the development program – 32 in the UAE and 20 in the United Kingdom. The Team Leader Passport journey will be extended to Helpdesk staff, with plans in place for a similar scheme to be initiated for contact centre agents and across the wider Etihad Airways network.

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Editor in chief is Linda Hohnholz.