Moving to a Fully Remote Contact Centre

Amy Elmore, Head of Customer Operations, Liaison Workforce

15 April 2024



Liaison Workforce’s Support Services Contact Centre has been fully remote since 2020, but what makes it work? In the second part of our two-part blog series, Amy Elmore, our Head of Customer Operations, looks at what makes our Contact Centre unique…

When the team first moved to working remotely in 2020 as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Customer Operations leadership team implemented a schedule that began with team briefings. These briefings included an update on the business decision to move to remote working and how we would support our teams, directly from the Customer Operations Director. This briefing included reassurances around future business update communications, associated communications channels, as well as signposting and support information for employee mental health and wellbeing.

It was scary at the start to think of working home alone every day – I was worried I would feel lonely and wondered if I would be as productive at home, but I quickly got used to it. It helped that one of Liaison’s top priorities was everyone’s wellbeing during the pandemic and for me it hasn’t changed 3 years later. Liaison still has everyone’s wellbeing as one of their top priorities and it really shows they care for their employees.

Lydia Holtham

Support Team Leader

Throughout that day, employees moved to their homes in groups of 3-5 people at a time. Individuals were prioritised based on personal circumstances and travel requirements. Those who remained in the office continued to support Contact Centre Operations, resulting in no negative impact to the customer service experience.

Each employee was sent home with a full technology offering which included laptops, keyboards, mice, dual screens, and headsets, with the goal of supporting long-term remote working.

In addition to this, Operations Managers completed individual check-ins to ensure their team members had suitable and safe locations to complete their work, as well as a strong WiFi or internet connection.

The following day (and first day working 100% remotely), each team member had a Teams call with their line manager, focusing on their mental health and wellbeing, and ensuring they had everything they needed to be successful in working remotely.


The initial successes

Very quickly, we began to appreciate the benefits of remote working. We were more focused and connected than ever before!

  • Quality increased
  • Communications increased – teams reported feeling better connected and well supported
  • Productivity increased
  • Customer satisfaction rose
  • Absence levels decreased
  • Employee engagement increased – better work/home life balance being the reported reason.


What made it work?

Initially, it worked because the pandemic meant it had to, and our employees recognised this. However, I think it was achieved so successfully because of these five reasons:

1 Business continuity – we were prepared

Six months prior to the beginning of Covid, the Contact Centre had moved each employee’s technology set-up from an office PC to a laptop.

The former technology set up was identified as a potential risk to business operations and was therefore mitigated with the introduction of laptops as part of a business continuity review. 

Having portable technology tested and ready to use, and a team confident in using it, made for a much easier transition.

2 Remote working wasn’t a completely new concept

To support this business continuity review, we had also started trialling remote working.  Some employees had begun working from home 1-2 days a week as part of their regular working pattern, whilst others chose to do this intermittently to support things such as development days, online training, or meeting requirements. This meant that, when the time came, the concept was not a completely new or frightening one.

Colleagues across much of Liaison Group were already remote – with 55% of the business already working from home before 2020, we were able to draw on processes, policies, and technologies that were already being used successfully across the business.

3 Change? Embrace it!

We pride ourselves on being a market-leading business, and you don’t get there without embracing change!

Our teams are proactive, open minded, and full of new ideas to support ways of working.  When the time came to leave the office, they embraced the decision, remained positive, and were full of ideas that later supported the success to remain working remotely. 

4 Everyone cares

The team found ways to stay connected, whilst being more productive than they ever had been. Technology support such as Microsoft Teams and our internal intranet played host to ice breaker questions, quizzes and games, Life Skills webinars, Photo of the Week competitions, virtual Coffee Roulette meet-ups, and recognitions for ‘going the extra mile’ and providing an excellent service to our customers.

5 Communication is key

Frequent communications are vitally important for us. Daily updates from the Group Chief Executive Officer were invaluable in sharing business updates and goals during the pandemic, as well as tips on how to look after our mental health and wellbeing. We continued to host our biannual Liaison Company Day – albeit virtually – giving the chance for presenters to share business updates and providing the opportunity to openly recognise success. As such, there remained a sense of togetherness.

Getting used to MS Teams really helped with my initial concerns. We had regular meetings/check-ups, so the team were ok through the difficult time we were in.

Thomas Macdonald

Senior Payroll Administrator

Thank you for supporting me before, during and after the move to remote working

Iain MacAskill

Senior Customer Support Specialist

With all of these factors in place, we continue to not just succeed with a remote Contact Centre, but thrive, and I am proud to be able to reflect on our journey to this point.

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Missed part one?

Managing a Successful Remote Contact Centre…