Passengers per day
Reduction in support tickets
SNCF is France’s state-owned national railway company. Founded in 1938, it operates the country’s national rail network, including the TGV, France’s high-speed rail network. SNCF manages approximately 32,000 km (20,000 mi) of track and the 14,000 trains that run on it every day.
– Help app users with discount cards, travel alerts, itineraries, and upcoming train information
– Reduce the number of support tickets
– Provide 24/7 support for app users
How SNCF reduced the number of customer support tickets
When asked about the biggest challenges they were facing, 38% of rail companies responded with “providing passenger information.” With impatient passengers increasingly using mobile apps, websites, and social media, rail companies are expected to be available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
SNCF picked up on this trend and decided to take action. The company transports 14 million people every day. With so many passengers, there is the potential for thousands of support requests from phone lines, email, social media, and messaging platforms.
Since launching their mobile app, SNCF has seen a growing proportion of users relying on it for train information, booking management, ticket information, discount card subscriptions, and other travel-related questions.
Reducing the number of support tickets
With millions of passengers trusting SNCF for their daily commute and long-distance rail travel, the customer support team was dealing with a deluge of support tickets. SNCF started exploring ways they could reduce the load on their support agents.
The support team was using Zendesk to handle customer issues and respond to inquiries. Naturally, SNCF was looking for a tool that could seamlessly integrate with Zendesk.
Mindsay worked with SNCF to build a bot within the SNCF mobile app. Within only a few months, this helped to reduce the number of incoming support tickets by 50%. The bot can answer questions about using the app, lets users create alerts, finds travel itineraries, and provides departure information. Passengers can interact with the bot by talking or typing.
Helping passengers use the app
SNCF noticed a sizeable number of requests were related to using the app. Some users felt lost within the app, causing them to uninstall it. There was nothing in place to show users how to use all of the app’s great features.
The bot is now able to address users’ questions about the app, improving the app’s usage. This also helped to decrease the number of users contacting the support team and reduced the number of uninstalls.
Always-on customer support
Passengers don’t stop at 7 pm. When they send a message on the app, they want an instant response. If they don’t get that, they’ll leave the app. SNCF wanted to tackle this. However, adding more support staff to deal with around-the-clock requests is costly.
Luckily, a bot can answer questions 24/7. This allowed SNCF to be there for their users when their support teams were getting some well-deserved rest. In the end, this helped them to increase overall customer satisfaction.
SNCF app chatbot in action
Within months of being launched, the SNCF bot was able to help app users:
– Digitize their discount cards
– Find travel itineraries
– Create travel alerts
– Look up train information
– Get answers to their frequently asked questions