MISSISSAUGA — Despite a record number of calls in April, Collette is managing to keep hold times to an average of two minutes following upgrades to its call centre.
According to President Jaclyn Leibl-Cote, Collette reported more than 29,000 calls last month, an increase of 50% over January. The month of May is off to an even better start, with Collette experiencing its best sales week since 2019.
Following upgrades the company made during the downtime caused by the pandemic, the record number of calls have been met with just a two minute average wait time.
“As people worked from home during the pandemic, we realized that we could transform our call centre so that it was spread out geographically and better able to serve our guests all over the world,” said Leibl-Cote. “At the same time, we made a significant investment in the newest technology so that our systems today are state of the art.”
Today, 60% of Collette’s 140 Cell Center employees are located at Collette’s Pawtucket, RI headquarters, as well as Henderson, Nevada, Sydney, Australia and Toronto and Vancouver in Canada. Prior to the pandemic, just 10% of employees were working remote. Currently, Collette’s Call Center count is at 80% of pre-pandemic levels but Leibl-Cote is confident that the company will be fully staffed, back to pre-pandemic levels, by year’s end and that new hires will continue as travel demand increases.
“Based on the numbers of calls and bookings, we see wonderful things ahead, not just for Collette but for the entire travel industry and for travellers.”
Collette was the first tour operator to resume travel operations in 2020, operating 45 departures across the United States between July and October 2020. Since the start of the pandemic, the company has operated more than 1,100 departures and has been operating internationally for 13 consecutive months, from March 2021 to April 2022.