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CSS Corp Rebrands as Movate & Positions OnDemand Work as Key Value Driver


In September 2022, CSS Corp announced a new name and brand identity: Movate. "Movate" promotes the company's commitment to achieving outcomes for its clients and co-innovating with them. The brand signifies Momentum and Innovation, the two core themes for the company. A key part of Movate's innovation framework is flexible gig work and work-from-anywhere delivery. In 2022, Movate surpassed 11,700 employees in 20 locations, including newly added sites in Colombia and Romania. The gig work model allows the company to accelerate and internationalize delivery outside physical centers and complement the service portfolio with specialized services.

Movate's gig work acquisition

In March 2022, Movate acquired Directly's OnDemand business, adding an on-demand CX work platform and flexible work resources for customer care and technical support. OnDemand has a network of thousands of freelancers in 60 countries and is based in San Francisco. Its clients include Microsoft, LinkedIn, Airbnb, and Autodesk.

Movate's acquisition of OnDemand follows a clear trend in BPS for vendors to build (e.g., Concentrix), acquire (e.g., Tech Mahindra, TELUS International), or partner with gig work platforms and resources. These deals arise from client requirements across verticals as they struggle to predict and manage the highly volatile work volumes and customer interactions and address challenges with skilled talent sourcing. Clients also look to expand the scope of outsourced activities, such as data annotation, ML training, and content enrichment (e.g., Alorica, HGS). As a result, the gig and contract work model has become an essential part of the delivery mix for CX services, following the footsteps of ITS processes such as crowdtesting. In addition, human cloud players such as Arise are experiencing significant growth.

For Movate, the deal added scale, resources in new delivery markets, multilingual capabilities, a client base in high tech and enterprise services, and IP to manage the gig experts. The OnDemand acquisition enables Movate to offer an integrated hybrid blended model with the scalability of the gig platform with its core workforce and the company’s proprietary CX transformation platform (Edison).

Movate OnDemand’s gig peer experts

The Movate OnDemand platform has between 6k and 10k active users supporting ~100 languages over email, in-app, in-game and web chat, and messaging. Clients are in the travel, shared economy, consumer and enterprise technology, gaming, telecom, and B2B services sectors. The freelancers have a typical profile of product/services or technology experts with several years of firsthand experience. OnDemand has processed ~5m tickets.

The proprietary platform connects the brands' experts to provide peer-to-peer support. For example, for a travel client, the gig agents are current property owners who are specialists in the marketplace. Movate and the client proactively recruit the talent with internal communication, presenting the opportunity to provide peer-to-peer help and showing the earning potential. Movate then runs an assessment, checks the applicants' backgrounds, qualifies them, and then onboards them. Another channel for onboarding members on Movate OnDemand is through targeted ads and communication on spaces such as forums and online communities. An example client is a game console. Again, Movate performs the authentication and evaluation of the expertise credentials.

OnDemand can scale up to 4x its workforce, sending notifications to the gig community to join during volume surges. With its game console client, Movate onboarded several hundred peer experts within weeks.

As active users, the applicants need zero or short training time, usually for process-specific policies, using OnDemand's integrated learning module. Another benefit of hiring existing experts is the quality achieved as soon as a new expert starts.

Example implementations include:

  • A software company for which OnDemand resolved 1.8m tickets with ~1.5k experts and achieved 87% CSAT
  • Professional social network with ~190k resolved tickets supporting nine European and Asian languages with 84% CSAT
  • Consumer electronics manufacturer processing ~864k tickets via OnDemand with AHT of 22 seconds and 82% CSAT
  • Enterprise product tech company using OnDemand in 17 languages, achieving 67% cost reduction and 94% CSAT.

Cloud work ecosystem

Movate OnDemand does not schedule the contract experts and they can choose the time, duration, volume, and type of individual tickets they want to handle. For the game client, some of the gig experts chose technical support tickets for the console, others to help gamers with account management issues. Peer experts can also work on several accounts. Movate also implemented a peer review QA process which covers 95% of the responses and provides feedback on each interaction.

The company achieves this flexibility by integrating OnDemand with its on-site and WAH full-time delivery workforce. Upon interaction entry, it deployed an intent engine to route tickets to gig experts. The engine parses between 20% and 70% to OnDemand, excluding selected tickets as billing questions for the telecom client. For some clients, the end-user has the option to choose peer-to-peer assistance. The platform has an option if the gig expert cannot answer a ticket instead of redirecting it to the traditional contact center. The company monitors and controls the ticket rerouting to improve the engine.

Because of scale of the talent pool, the response rates are shorter, with an average of 90 seconds. Movate analyzes the performance of the ecosystem to expand the peer expert community as the ticket volume grows. The analysis also drives real-time compensation, driving price during peak demand. Also, based on the volumes for different intent types, Movate proposes and creates automated responses to reduce manual contact handling.

OnDemand incorporates the peer QA results, the response speed, availability, and a reputation engine that uses customer CSAT evaluations to form an overall contributor score. It uses the score to allocate volumes which in turn drive agents' earnings. The gig experts receive payment once the customer confirms their issue is resolved.

The model works well for established brands with a sizable customer base and sufficient volumes to feed the expert cloud. Movate estimates a 30%-50% lower cost per handled interaction but requires around 10% of the volumes to be handled via the gig model to achieve the ROI.

Cohesive element in the delivery mix

Movate positions OnDemand as an element of its end-to-end managed services. It continues to invest in the gig platform; for example, piloting voice workflow for a technology client in a click-to-call model. When a customer asks for a callback, the platform converts it to a gig ticket. It uses outbound calls to follow compliance and PII requirements. It has eight patents related to contact routing and peer-to-peer evaluation.

The company is in discussions with existing BPS clients (e.g., in the networking space) and prospects (e.g., in mobility) to adopt OnDemand for part of their volumes. It offers to handle certain volumes with a mixture of traditional BPO, gig experts, and automated responses with a shifting ratio between the three types with the ultimate goal of training conversational AI and virtual assistants for self-service. The company commits per resolved contact to create an ROI accretive model. An example win is with a computer OEM for their premium consumer segment.

Lastly, Movate is exploring the use of OnDemand for additional services such as data annotation and ML training, complementing its geospatial analytics offerings.

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