Boss of Hull's ResQ contact centre backs new clampdown on nuisance calls
'POSITIVE RESPONSE': Nic Marshall of ResQ
By Hull Daily Mail | Posted: 15 Mar 2017
The boss of the largest contact centre in East Yorkshire has welcomed a clampdown on nuisance calls by the UK's communications regulator Ofcom.
Nic Marshall, chief executive at Hull-based ResQ, has gone one step further by launching Why Not Zero?, a campaign in support of the regulatory body he hopes will change perceptions of a "much-maligned" industry.
Ofcom recently estimated that consumers receive 200 million abandoned calls and 1.5 billion silent calls per year.
Classifying any such calls as misuse, the regulator vowed to minimise the harm caused to consumers by heavily punishing those that do not comply with a new ruling that came into play on March 1.
Some believe the move could destroy the outbound call centre as it is perceived today.
Mr Marshall said: "We're actually delighted about what Ofcom are doing.
"For many years now, we have been driving the industry forward and developing something called Responsible Telemarketing, almost in anticipation of this day."
RESPONSIBLE APPROACH: ResQ is headquartered in George Street, Hull
Headquartered in George Street, and one of the top five of the city's biggest private employers, having a total of more than 900 staff, ResQ claims to operate the only contact centres in the country (it also has a base in Seaham, County Durham), to register 0 per cent abandoned calls and nuisance rates.
"Responsible Telemarketing is the only ready-made responsible approach to complete compliance that's fully in line with Ofcom requirements – and it's here right now," said Mr Marshall.
"It also has all the commercial advantages of automated dialling, such as heightened productivity, improved contact rates and greater opportunity to convert, so our clients love it, too."
"In short, we have a leading-edge solution that enables our team to speak to people who want to be spoken to, and helps clients reach their goals with greater efficiency.
"That's what Why Not Zero? is all about: happy consumers, clients and workforce."
The likely implications of Ofcom's revised policy are a higher number of investigations penalties for those who do not comply; thus having a major impact on repeat offenders.
Ofcom's stance is that a movement away from nuisance calling will benefit the consumer and the businesses involved.
Mr Marshall agrees, believing that the move will also be of wider benefit to the industry.
"There are some that will fall by the wayside, some that will try to put their house in order and the rest that will be a shining example of what the industry can actually do," he said.
"For businesses using contact centres, the choice is simple. Doing nothing could cost a business thousands, while being responsible not only means being compliant and avoiding fines, but protecting the brand and becoming more profitable. It's a no brainer."
It is ResQ's aim to change the perceptions of the industry and create a positive image, as well as taking the lead for innovation and good practice.
"We are already getting a very positive response to Why Not Zero? from our customers who want to be compliant and want to be seen to be doing the right thing.
"Also, the regulator Ofcom is very happy someone can do this already; it has set the bar very high.
"What we have been able to do is to exceed what its requirements are.
"This is a gamechanger and we know there are no other businesses or call centres in the UK who can say they are 100 per cent compliant."
Founded in 2006, ResQ works with some of the UK's biggest brands including FTSE 100 and 250 companies, and is dedicated to providing sales focused, professional and client-centric inbound and outbound calling services.
When the company reached capacity at its Hull site, in George Street, last summer, ResQ expanded to Seaham's Spectrum Business Park, announcing its objective to employ 1,200 people by the end of 2018.
Mr Marshall said: "We have grown from 12 people to where we are today and it has meant a lot of hard work."
Visit Why Not Zero? for details about the campaign.