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When Vodafone needed to innovate to improve its processes, it turned to Xerox

Sometimes innovation arrives after a bit of inspiration. But more often, innovation happens after months of work. And even it’s the latter, the payoff is still sweet.

Vodafone can attest to that.

The British telecommunications provider has worked with Xerox for years, refining varying processes as part of Xerox Customer Engagement Services. It’s a massive operation, too. Vodafone sports more than 18 million mobile customers in the United Kingdom, with an additional 660,000 home broadband customers, and over 400 retail stores. To reach new and existing customers, they ship 50,000 devices each week.

With a business that size, one doesn’t just revamp on a whim. Partners who understand the business are essential. That’s Xerox.

“Xerox is a trusted advisor for Vodafone,” says Jacky Davies, SCM Business Partner Marketing at Vodafone UK. “Just as we expect them to, they challenge our processes and look for ways to improve them – which ultimately makes the experience better for our customers, too.”

Significant savings realized through revamping shipping process

But it wasn’t just one thing. Xerox developed a bespoke solution involving three areas for shipping devices: supply chain, data management, and dispatch process. That solution is on track to deliver annual cost savings of at least 20%.

“We haven’t just taken what their worth, we looked at the full end-to-end process,” says Penny Rose, Global Delivery Sales Manager for Xerox.

She originally spotted the opportunity after working with Vodafone for the past years and understood their processes and what could be done. She and Rob Clark, Xerox Manager who manages the Vodafone contract, presented this as a chance to refine a process, and ensure that realized savings could be reallocated back into the overall business.

The first piece came in reducing the cost of sending out 50,000 broadband routers, mobile phones, and other devices each week to new customers. Xerox implemented a range of reusable, recyclable Vodafone-branded cardboard boxes, which updated warehouse processes, and consolidated the sourcing of the related printed items.

This also allowed an additional branding push. Vodafone recently refreshed its brand, so the updated packaging served as increased brand awareness and engagement.

Vodafone, Xerox exploring other possible savings

In addition, Xerox updated the process for managing customer data. They’ve saved time in the processing, added data encryption. Plus, the process reduces the overall carbon footprint because there are fewer trips to deliver the units. This is in addition to enrolling Vodafone in Print Releaf, which also offsets their carbon footprint. Since May 2020, nearly 26,000 trees have been planted as part of the reforestation program.

The 20% costs savings and innovative supply chain solution pleased Vodafone so much, they’re exploring what else Xerox can provide.

“Innovation is a massive word at Vodafone,” says Davies. “Penny and Rob would push us to examine ‘Why that spec, or that card? Why don’t we try that or try it this way?’ That’s what we’d expect from our partners.

“It never ceases to amaze us what they do on a daily basis.”

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