I Love Travel
Student Travel Specialist Creates Visual Call Queue to
Improve Call Center Services
Student tours organiser I Love Travel has helped more than 125,000 people see the world, make friends along the way, and return with a story to tell. Founder and CEO, Alexander Handa, created the company as a spin-off of his parent’s travel agency, Handa Travel, which was founded in 1976. Now the offshoot is many times larger than the parent company, and he also serves as the President of Handa Travel.
I Love Travel is the corporate umbrella for several brands: S-Trip!, Campus Vacations, the New Breakaway Tours, Unleashed, and Stoke Travel. Based in Toronto, the company has about 140 full-time employees in seven offices, supervising 500 tour guides in the field.
I Love Travel’s promise to high school, college, and university students is a trip of a lifetime experience. One of the ways the company makes sure it is a good experience is by making the company call center responsive to travelers or tour guides who may call in with a complaint or a problem that needs to be solved. To maintain customer satisfaction, those calls need to be handled as quickly and efficiently as possible.
Working with the RingCentral Platform APIs, I Love Travel has created a custom visual call queue display that is used to monitor and manage the call center to make sure hold times are minimised and customer service is maximised.
“Before the integration, we didn’t really have real-time insight to resource allocation,” Handa says. “Now, we can react in real time.” Before switching to RingCentral, I Love Travel used a phone system based on hardware installed locally and powered by Asterisk open source software. Rather than upgrade and customise that software to meet his needs, Handa concluded it would be simpler to start with RingCentral’s industry-leading business phone service in the cloud. Because his workforce is so highly mobile, the RingCentral smartphone apps were also very attractive, allowing him to treat a tour guide’s mobile phone as an extension of the company phone system.
The result is a visual call queue display that makes it easy to see the ebb and flow of calls throughout the day and make sure the call center staff is keeping pace with them. The chart shows the number of inbound calls, how many have been attended to, and how many are waiting. The application pulls data from the RingCentral call logs and displays it in real time. If one call center employee is overloaded and another is sitting idle, the call center manager can see the problem immediately and make adjustments.
Next, Handa would like to see the application add more call management features and the ability to put a call on hold and transfer it to an agent who is on standby.
With the help of RingCentral, I Love Travel is working to make sure students can phone home from their travels no matter where they are.
I Love Travel is a leader in youth and student travel.
Seven offices, 140 full-time employees, plus 500 tour guides
“Before the integration, we didn’t really have real-time insight to resource allocation. Now, we can react in real time.”
— Alexander Handa, Founder and CEO