27th November, 2015

BT Expedite elves are essential in ensuring a successful peak trading period.

We’ve been helping our customers prepare for their peak Christmas trading period and it’s all kicking off this week with Cyber Weekend. It’s our team’s job to make sure our customers’ tills keep ring-ting-tingle-ing too!

The peak period is a key trading period for retailers, which not only involves pre-Christmas but also driven by Cyber Weekend and the post-Christmas sales. In fact, the peak planning period starts way back in in August and remains hot until mid-January. By December the call volumes to our teams may start to drop but the priority goes through the roof.


So what is BT Expedite doing to prepare? We’re responsible for 28,000 tills and over 20 websites providing the lifeblood of over 80 retailers.. Having a good Christmas is critical for the success of our clients’ businesses so it’s essential that we provide the right service for their customers, so we plan, plan again, review and then plan some more!

There are three things to consider:

  1. core service
  2. additional service
  3. the team themselves.

For core service, the support desk is running every minute of every day and the team tries to minimise impact to service and to the desk wherever they can. So they carry out health checks which include checking for disk space, databases and infrastructure. These are all to make sure that the solution is fit and healthy enough to cope with the increase in transaction data.

Our Service Managers also work closely with our clients to make Client Care aware of key activity dates, such as sales dates and promotion nights. Licences need to be up to date and valid so, for example, when shoppers are asked for a postcode, they are able to do so.

And it doesn’t stop there!  There’s refresher training for support teams on key areas of the solution that don’t typically cause the teams many issues during the rest of the year – they need to be as fit and ready as the solutions they support!

Finally Expedite’s Client Care team have a well-documented Major Incident process. It covers communications to clients and within the business and allocates technical resource to recover any problems and get the retailer back up and selling as quickly as possible.

Each year, BT Expedite prepares a suite of additional services for its clients. These are things such as proactive monitors, extended opening hours, additional opening days, enhanced on-call as well as customer-specific services. Who knew that midnight on Christmas Day was peak trading time for Halfords web sales?

Let’s not forget our colleagues in BT Expedite – we couldn’t provide any of these services without them. They have to make sure they provide the right level of cover at the right times while balancing people’s need to be with their families at this special time.

So if you’re out doing your Christmas shopping at Primark, Fat Face or WHSmith, or ordering online from the likes of Claire’s, Karen Millen, Lyle & Scott or even Halfords at midnight on Christmas Day, then it’s BT Expedite that’s keeping the tills and websites ringing.


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