2020 year in review: Technical Customer Service

February 2, 2021

The Technical Customer Service (TCS) team is GBCI’s main entry point for customers seeking help with GBCI programs, and we aim to provide a seamless experience that fosters engagement and articulates the possibilities for a better future for everyone to thrive.

TCS is handled by two groups – a highly technical group of former GBCI reviewers, consultants and licensed professionals, and a first tier group via the call center that helps with basic questions. By working together, and in collaboration with staff throughout GBCI, these two groups make up the Technical Customer Service team.

In 2020 TCS focused on three goals:

  • Designing efficient and engaging support structures to enable our members, project teams and credential holders/seekers to achieve their sustainability leadership goals.
  • Solving root customer challenges by aligning efforts across the GBCI organization.
  • Increasing energy and confidence in GBCI through each customer interaction.

To achieve these goals, we strived to create a self-service environment for customers so that they can easily and quickly find what they need. We focused on solving the root causes or barriers to success so that we are market driven and can offer holistic engagement for our stakeholders. We also had several successes, including a continuous improvement review of our processes, improved root cause analysis and implementation, higher customer experience score and an increased engagement in GBCI programs.

Continuous improvement review

In 2020, we conducted a full review that discovered a number of approaches that could be refined to increase efficiency and decrease turnaround time. A highlight of improvements made include:

  • Reducing the number of hand offs between our internal teams. This enabled us to improve turnaround time of resolution.
  • Centralizing the incoming GBCI customer service channels through a single point of entry: the call center and the contact us forms.
  • Continuous automation of several processes including price estimates and billing to increase the number of available self-service options.
  • Streamlining customer communications for clarity, impact and compliance.

2020 saw an increase in engagement that was facilitated by responsive and holistic customer service.

Arc
The TCS team fielded 1,685 inquiries for Arc in 2020. The majority of inquiries centered around helping project teams using LEED earn building certification, but the team also helped projects implement new features in Arc such as Arc Essentials, Arc for All and the Arc performance certificates. The pandemic brought an influx of customer service queries around building safety and re-entry, and the team supported the Safety First: Arc Re-Entry Pilot Credit, which is designed to help reduce infection risk in buildings and spaces.

EDGE
The EDGE program also saw growth and intertest in 2020, with TCS fielding 1,077 inquiries. The majority of EDGE queries were regarding projects and certification/review questions. EDGE was one of our top three customer service topics, after LEED. TCS has helped the EDGE program through assisting professionals with EDGE training, coordinating with International Finance Corporation (IFC) on the EDGE software and technical guides and facilitating business development inquires.

Parksmart
The TCS team fielded 184 Parksmart inquiries mainly regarding review questions. The team has collected a number of suggestions to help incorporate sustainability in our parking spaces.

SITES
837 inquiries regarding SITES were responded to in 2020. The majority of the questions were helping project teams with registration and certification, as well as helping professionals achieve the SITES AP credential. The pandemic brought an increase in queries and the team helped support and field questions with the release of Safety First pilot credits for SITES. SITES is one of the top three customer service topics after LEED. The TCS team also assisted with the roll out of SITES Precertification, new SITES legal requirements and reviews and helped steward relationships with potential SITES customers.

TRUE
The TCS team fielded 661 TRUE inquiries regarding the TRUE Advisor and TRUE certification. TRUE is one of the top three topics in customer service after LEED and often goes hand in hand with LEED, so there is overlap on customers and relationships. The team helped support and field questions with the release of Safety First pilot credits for TRUE in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and supported TRUE Advisor customers with exam extensions and the new deadline and certificate extension term.

WELL
While the TCS team transitioned general WELL customer service activities over to the IWBI team this year, WELL AP inquiries continue to be fielded by the team. In 2020, the TCS team helped more than 412 professionals with WELL AP questions centered around exam rescheduling and extensions. We consulted on earning and obtaining CE hours especially during a time when many customers were unemployed or their lives and jobs were disrupted due to COVID.

We are proud of what we have been able to accomplish in 2020, as our team has worked hard to convert every incoming inquiry from our customers into a conversation of partnership. And we look forward to this continued partnership in 2021 and beyond!