At WeGotTickets we take customer service pretty seriously. When I joined the company in 2008 it was as a member of our Support team, and I was told by the department manager back then that you only truly get to demonstrate exceptional customer service in a crisis. And to say the last year has been a crisis would be something of an understatement.
As Covid-19 reared its ugly head early last year and the UK went into lockdown, music and comedy venues, promoters and festivals cancelled their events in unprecedented numbers. In March 2020 we processed as many refunds as we had in the previous two years, and it didn’t slow down much from there.
To tackle this unique and unparalleled challenge we redeployed staff from our Sales, Account Management, Accounts, IT and Marketing teams so they could help our Support team out – with training done via video call, obviously!
Even as our sales plummeted to around 3-5% of expected levels we still met our customer service targets. Dealing with many thousands more queries from customers and event organisers than ever before, we cancelled and rescheduled events, and informed ticket holders of the changes within 3 hours of being notified by the event organiser, even during the busiest period.
All refunds were initiated within 3 hours, helping customers manage a difficult period by getting their money back in their accounts with minimal delay.
After the initial rush we found that there were still many events on sale during the lockdown period, and so we pro-actively reached out to all those event organisers. These events were then cancelled, postponed or rescheduled, ensuring that ticket holders for every single event were updated ahead of the original date of their event.
Given the dramatic effect on sales, we were forced to take advantage of the Government’s furlough scheme in April last year, and have been working with a much reduced capacity ever since but this has not affected our customer service – nor our ability to support the event organisers that sell their tickets with us.
Early in the pandemic we developed The Event That Never Happened, a way for venues and event organisers to collect donations through our site which has helped many through this incredibly challenging year. We also kept a close eye on Government messaging, ensured our clients were up to date on relevant developments, provided systems for tracking changing vat rates, and information on how to fulfil Test & Trace commitments.
As the green shoots of recovery appear in the live events sector, we’re hopeful that things will start to return to normal over the coming months, but you can bet that whatever happens we’ll still be here providing the same award-winning customer service that we always have.