Last week's A-Level results day saw UCAS helplines bombarded with thousands of calls from students looking to confirm their place at university next month.
Fortunately, the organisation has revealed that it was able to shoulder the burden this year thanks to a new partnership with Vodafone, which meant it was able to handle more than 16,000 calls during the space of one day.
In preparing itself for the torrent of calls, UCAS put in place a new cloud-based contact centre service allowing calls to be managed effectively no matter what the volume.
Provided by Vodafone, the new system also enabled UCAS to integrate call routing with its email, web chat, SMS and social media platforms, meaning students could get the advice they needed in the way that suits them best on one of the most important days in the academic calendar.
“A level results day is incredibly important for aspiring students up and down the country and they all rightly expect UCAS to do a professional and effective job of managing the process of confirmation and clearing," said Andy Irving, head of technology services management at UCAS. “We are committed to delivering the right advice and support in a timely fashion through our call centre and so we need a communications partner which understands the impact of A-level results day on individuals and the economy.
“Vodafone has provided us with a system, network and service that has meant we were able to help thousands of students on this year’s results day and they have been a reliable technology partner through this busy time.”
Going forward, UCAS says that the new call centres will allow it to scale up capacity during its busiest times of the year, which includes the January deadline for applicant's personal statements. The organisation has also boosting employee numbers of its call centre team six-fold.
“With no room for error on the biggest day of many young people’s lives, UCAS needed to be able to trust its service providers to deliver the upmost levels of resilience and performance, allowing it to support school leavers in their next steps," added Phil Mottram, enterprise director for Vodafone UK.
"In a world where there is increasing pressure to be well-placed for responding to the unexpected, it’s never been more important for businesses to ensure they’re armed with the latest technologies. We’re proud to be able to help UCAS successfully deliver a reliable service to students when it matters most.”