INDUSTRY

Professional Services

HEADQUARTERS

North America

CHALLENGES
  • Shared inbox made it difficult to coordinate customer support 
  • No defined system of assignment 
  • No consistency for clients 
  • No reporting or insights into agent performance 
SUCCESSES
  • Increased visibility into performance across regional support teams 
  • Complete customer context for seamless conversations from agent to agent 
  • Intelligent assignment routed the right ticket to the right agent at the right time  
  • Seamless, modern, unified support system improved customer satisfaction 

Reduction in response time

69%

Tickets per month

35,000

About ESS 

Established in 2000, ESS plays a pivotal role in shaping the education of over 2.5 million students. Over 700 school districts across 27 states work with ESS to find passionate, qualified educators who guide students through the most formative years of their lives. ESS’ mission is to free school districts from the administrative efforts of staffing its K-12 teaching positions by connecting them with over 80,000 qualified teachers.  

 

Graduating from shared inboxes to Freshdesk 

ESS helps fill a number of roles, including full-time teachers, substitutes, classroom assistants, and special aides. Between trying to save time for overworked district secretaries and liaising with teachers across the country, ESS support agents often have a lot going on at once. And that’s why David Faith, VP of Business Systems, realized that working off shared inboxes didn’t make sense for his team. He said, “it was taking people a lot of time just to organize their own personal inboxes and then the group inbox. There was no consistency in replies to clients and no way for me to track anything.” After testing out platforms like Zendesk, Salesforce, and Netsuite, David picked Freshdesk to implement best practices in his customer support organization. In addition to Freshdesk’s ticketing and collaboration features, advanced reporting capabilities, and ease of use, David appreciated how Freshworks’ “hunger to do more” for its customers echoed ESS’ own philosophy.   

 

Excelling with great customer service 

With Freshdesk’s reports and advanced analytics, David is able to measure the performance of the customer support function.  This insight has helped him restructure and optimize the team by demarcating roles between agents and supervisors based on expertise and experience.  Freshdesk’s intelligent workflow automations and the ticket routing engine have freed agents from the mundane task of organizing shared inboxes and manually routing queries. Freshdesk has also provided complete customer context, helping different agents to pick up the customer conversation with confidence and ensuring they don’t have to repeat themselves over and over. 

And while David is thrilled that response times have dropped from 24 hours to 7.5 hours, he is happiest that his agents are freer and less distracted by shared inbox management to provide meaningful service in filling the hiring needs of the schools it serves. 

 

Delightful results at scale 

Currently, ESS’s 170 customer service agents across offices in New Jersey, Arkansas, Michigan, and Oregon tackle 35,000 tickets a month from 700 school districts, serving a population of more than 80,000 educators. As more school districts come on board, this number continues to grow,   

Freshdesk scales in line with the organization’s growth. David said, “When I came on board in 2015, the Cherry Hill (NJ) office had 9 customer service reps. In the shared inbox world, reps could support a max of 16 clients. Now with visibility across the team, our clients to rep ratio has improved significantly, going from 16 to 24 while adding over 100 clients organically.”  

 

Looking ahead 

Enabling growth remains David’s first priority and he is excited to see how Freddy AI can drive intelligent automation in the support team to deflect routine queries, reduce ticket volumes, and assist agents in delivering more predictive support with context. He is also keen to leverage Freshdesk’s knowledge base capabilities to promote a higher degree of customer self-service. In addition, David is considering adding more support channels.  He is evaluating Freshchat to offer a modern messaging experience to give busy district staff another convenient option to solve school staffing needs.  

“Freshdesk has delivered great value for us. It is intuitive, has created consistency in processes, and it gives us the ability to onboard new agents without a lot of extra work. We can train people quickly. It more than pays for itself.”

David Faith

VP - Business Systems

ESS