In the run up to the SDI Awards 2022 gala dinner and prize-giving on 22 March, we’ve been asking our finalists about their experiences, reasons for entering and hopes for the future. Here’s what iVendi told us:
Finalist, Best (Small-Medium Enterprise) Service Desk 2022
Founded in 2009, iVendi has grown rapidly by working with key players in the automotive and financial services sectors in the UK and Europe. The head office is based in Colwyn Bay, North Wales with a remote development and engineering team based around the North West of the UK. With a growing team of nearly 100 people, iVendi is now the leading platform for online vehicle retailing and financial services, providing solutions used by leading manufacturers, retailers and global finance providers. Working with car, van and motor bike manufacturers across the UK and Europe, their software is accessed by more than 8,000 retailers across the UK alone. Constantly developing a platform that makes online vehicle retailing a reality, iVendi strive to make it as easy as possible for people to buy a vehicle, whether that is online or in the showroom, facilitating the finance transaction from quote to payout.
What made you decide to enter the awards?
It has been a long term objective from the initial foundation of the Support function over 4 years ago that when we were ready to correctly document our approach, success and solutions to established industry concerns we would enter the SDI Awards.
Once our mission to provide a proactive support experience through customer engagement, tech innovation and continuous service improvement was defined and actionable, and our maturity and growth appropriate, we couldn’t wait to demonstrate our industry impact to a wider and like-minded audience.
I still have a notebook somewhere from my first week in the business in October 2017 with the words ‘SDI Award nominated’ scribbled and highlighted!
What part of the awards process did you enjoy the most?
The entire process from the document submission through to presentation and live walkthrough of service has been a unique and inspiring opportunity to review and present our approach to service and support. In addition, as a team, it was an enabler to another collaborative and open environment for the development and measurement of our collective goals and the presentation of these to external and experienced IT industry professionals.
The feeling of pride throughout the team on completion of every step of the awards process was notable and carried great value in highlighting the collaborative, progressive and supportive culture we have fostered here at iVendi.
In the last 12 months, what has been the most successful initiative your team has implemented to help your business improve its performance?
Implementation and successful certification of the ISO 20000 standard gave a measurable level of effectiveness and a culture of continual improvement that has become engrained in all behaviours across our Support Services.
With future European expansion plans for the business, the adoption of this working practice and standard shows a commitment to a high quality of service and governance, giving the business a competitive edge and demonstrating to all partners internal and external that as a service desk we adopt and adhere to best practice within the industry.
What are your top 3 tips to make a service desk successful?
1. Understand the ‘why’ and the ‘who’ when striving for service excellence.
2. Be proactive rather than reactive – embrace the power of anticipation and delivery through automation, data trends and service analysis.
3. The value of the team. Help individuals identify who they are and when they are at their best. Promote the qualities and strengths that make them different and empower all to drive up confidence, engagement with work and productivity. Harmonised efforts for a common goal creates a powerful team identity.
What one thing do you think really makes you stand out as a service organisation?
Innovation. Our Client Delivery Centre seeks to remove the reactive approach traditional to service delivery and instead measure, monitor and trend customer behaviour to engage before any queries or issues are visible to our user base, which covers the UK and Europe.
Through automated detect and resolve procedures, we provide a proactive support experience through customer engagement, technological innovation and continuous service improvement. With bespoke in-house software and tooling, clearly defined best practices and frameworks of service, our Support Services benefits the entire business, from software creation to customer retention.
Visibility, availability, anticipation, and empathy have created a unique and proactive foundation for service and support success.
How are you preparing to evolve your service desk over the next few years? Please share your most exciting plan with us!
With plans for further internationalisation within the business, the natural evolution of the Support function is focused on the ‘lift and shift’ approach to our established solutions in readiness for additional European territories.
To establish a team with a high, consistent, and varied spread of product intelligence on all support routines and apply this with prevention culture as a unique problem-solving approach has the real opportunity to standardise an excellence of service and is an approach wholly unique on an international platform in our industry.
If you could choose any celebrity to work on your service desk, who would it be?
Kimi Raikkonen – World-class, multi-disciplined and famously cool under pressure. Plus he’s retired from F1 now so will be all over a new career in the automotive industry!
What does it mean to your team to be a finalist in the ‘Best (Small-Medium) Service Desk’ category?
It’s a real honour to be a finalist in these internationally recognised awards and the highlight of over 4 years of development and execution of service.
Created in 2017, iVendi’s Client Delivery Centre started with the simple strategic aim of providing ‘world-class service’.
To fulfil the ambitions of our board and vision we focused on the two most important elements to service, the customer and the employees. Our continued success would not have been possible without either and the recognition of the team’s objectives, initiatives and service success by SDI is personally and professionally a very proud moment for all.
What advice would you give to anyone entering the awards next year?
Always collaborate, not only within your team but the wider business community. Maximising expertise and resources across iVendi ensured that we were fully supported in our submission to the SDI Awards and that all successes are collectively championed throughout the business. Never underestimate the strength of collaboration!!
What would you do to celebrate if your team won ‘Best (Small-Medium) Service Desk 2022’?
For an achievement we’ve strived towards since the formation of the team in 2017 naturally there would be celebrations!
However, the power of the accolade would be a great catalyst for iVendi to continue to attract the very best potential to our team and would further solidify the expectation of what iVendi’s Client Delivery Centre is not only capable of, but also aspiring towards.
Find out more about this year’s Awards categories and watch the highlights from the last Awards ceremony for a taster of this incredible event and what it means to our community.
SDI Awards are sponsored by: