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FlexiGroup ‘Virtual Contact Centre’ takes off in regions

17 April 2018

FlexiGroup ‘Virtual Contact Centre’ takes off in regions

· More jobs for regional New Zealand with remote workplace programme

· Trial shows improved job satisfaction and lift in employee productivity

· FlexiGroup New Zealand to tap into a diverse national talent pool

A virtual contact centre pilot run by financial services provider, FlexiGroup New Zealand, has seen the organisation extend its customer services operations to include employees working remotely from home across New Zealand.

The pilot run over three months saw a small group of employees from Auckland, King Country and Waikato successfully work from home as the organisation looks to broaden the talent pool and extend job opportunities into regional New Zealand.

FlexiGroup Chief Customer Officer, Tim McFarlane says the work-from-anywhere model is likely to become more and more of a consideration for large city-based businesses as house prices rise and traffic and commute times intensify, resulting in growing numbers of people trading in the city life for a more accessible lifestyle elsewhere.

“Some of the ‘big city’ issues we face like traffic, house prices and cost of living are commonly cited reasons for the growing levels of regional migration, and employers need to start thinking beyond the four walls of an office to not only retain good talent but also start tapping into the diverse national talent pool.

“As an organisation we started to see a growing number of our employees decide to relocate outside of Auckland. We never want to lose good people – so we stopped and said why can’t they keep working with us from another part of New Zealand? Let’s find a way to make it happen. Based on the success of the pilot we’re now looking to directly recruit for new roles on a work-from-home basis in various regions across New Zealand.”

Anthea Dames, FlexiGroup Customer Service Representative, has worked with the company for four and half years during which time her family decided to relocate from Auckland to build a more affordable family home in Huntly. Determined to keep a job she enjoyed, Anthea was commuting from Huntly to Auckland.

“I was waking up at 3:45am and sometimes not getting home till 9pm or after depending on shifts. The commute could be three hours return on a good day, six hours on bad days – so having the opportunity to do the same job but from my home has really been quite life changing for me.

“Beyond not having to deal with the stress of a long commute and traffic each day, I’m now logging into work remotely each morning bright and happy, my productivity has improved and work-life balance has never been better – spending time with my family during the week wasn’t really an option before. It’s incredible to have the flexibility to stay in a job I love despite living about 100km from the office! It’s an absolute win-win.”

In addition to improved employee job satisfaction, FlexiGroup New Zealand noted a six per cent (6%) average increase in employee productivity during the pilot.

“It’s no secret that happy and healthy employees are more productive and employers have a great opportunity to redefine the ‘workplace’ and break down the traditional constructs of how people can engage in their day-to-day work – it’s an exciting space to be exploring and finding solutions for, and we’re now looking at options to roll this out across the wider business,” says McFarlane.


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