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The Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) has just reported a 20% drop in complaints as a result of the training we designed and delivered over the past fourteen months.

Every year the Agency deals with 45 million customers from a staggeringly diverse customer base. The call centre alone takes 12.5 million calls, apart from the letters and emails it receives.

Having seen what we achieved when we transformed customer communication at British Gas, DVLA asked us to come in and work our magic again.

Chief executive Oliver Morley has catapulted this government organisation into the 21st Century by getting rid of what he calls ‘old-school technology’, and digitising most of DVLA’s services.

He wanted to do the same for its customer communication, turning adequate into ‘Best in Class’.

With this goal in mind, we created a bespoke training course for DVLA using Psycho-Linguistics – our unique blend of psychology and language. By giving call centre agents a better insight into human behaviour, they began to understand how to deal with people in a far more sophisticated way.

And the language strategies they’ve mastered allow them to control the emotional reaction callers have to the words used in conversations. They can now strip negatives out of calls, use five techniques to control tone, and harness connotation to project the personality and brand values of DVLA more effectively.

They can also slip effortlessly between the five different types of listening and know how to use Psycho-Linguistics to get the best results.

And just for them, there was a section on how to enhance their resilience. Taking 130–150 calls a day, six days a week, throughout the year is no mean feat.

So everyone is delighted to find the specialist training provided by T2, combined with the hard work of the call centre team, and the commitment of executives at DVLA has paid dividends.

Before the training revolutionised calls, the ‘old-school’ style of communication created the image of the Agency. We then re-surveyed the same people following the course to see how things had changed. DVLA certainly looks a more trustworthy, friendly, dynamic body to deal with now than it did before the Mindset Project began.

‘If you wish to know the mind of a man, listen to his words,’ says the Chinese proverb. You could say the same for a commercial or government organisation.

The ‘Smart Talk’ programme – the winning title given to the project from an in-house competition – has received excellent feedback.

Comments on the actual course itself range from:

“I’ve been on a lot, a lot of training courses and this is by far the best one, I felt motivated and involved throughout” to “It was fun and interesting, and I enjoyed every minute.”

Those taking a more elevated view said,“Excellent course. It will be a massive help to our reputation” and “Fantastic course. Would highly recommend it to anyone not just on the phone but anyone that deals with the public or third parties.”

And DVLA is delighted to report it has cut its complaints by 20%.

Win-win all round.


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