Alliance Data Call Centers Achieve 'Center of Excellence' Certification by Purdue University Affiliate for Fourth Consecutive Year

BenchmarkPortal Again Recognizes Alliance Data's Customer Service Operations as Best in the Industry

Oct 13, 2010, 07:30 ET from Alliance Data Systems Corporation

DALLAS, Oct. 13 /PRNewswire/ -- Alliance Data Systems Corporation, a leading provider of loyalty and marketing solutions derived from transaction-rich data, announced today that BenchmarkPortal, in conjunction with Center for Customer-Driven Quality™ at Purdue Research Park, has again recognized Alliance Data for achieving customer service excellence across all four of its Retail Services call center operations. This recertification marks the fourth consecutive year Alliance Data has been certified as a Center of Excellence for the quality of its operations—the most prestigious ranking attainable from BenchmarkPortal.

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"Alliance Data consistently demonstrates leadership in call center operational quality and clearly strives to exemplify best practices in all aspects of call center management," said Bruce Belfiore, chief executive officer of BenchmarkPortal. "We're pleased to award certification to all Alliance Data call centers again this year – their four call centers are truly among the best of the best in the industry."

Alliance Data provides integrated credit and marketing solutions, including private label, co-brand and commercial credit card programs designed to build long-term customer relationships and grow clients' businesses. The company partners with some of the industry's most recognizable specialty retailers by leveraging consumer insights and marketing strategies to create targeted, branded communications that engage customers and drive loyalty. The company also provides customer servicing for credit cards issued by its two subsidiary banks, World Financial Network National Bank (WFNNB) and World Financial Capital Bank (WFCB).

BenchmarkPortal manages the world's largest database of call center key performance metrics and best practices, collected from thousands of call centers. In developing their call center measurement parameters, BenchmarkPortal found that 22 Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) strongly correlate to quality and quantity of calls handled in call center operations. For the benchmarking survey, BenchmarkPortal monitored and measured Alliance Data's call center performance against these KPIs to determine each center's level of efficiency and effectiveness. Some of the results include:

  • High caller satisfaction. Customers calling into Alliance Data call centers give 'top box' caller satisfaction ratings 43% higher than the industry average. 'Top box' satisfaction refers to the highest possible survey score customers can use to rate the service they experienced.
  • Strong level of first-call resolution. At a rate of 95 percent, Alliance Data call center associates resolve most customer matters within one call.
  • Rapid phone answering. Alliance Data call center associates answer customer service phone calls within an average of 10.87 seconds, compared with the industry average of 19.88 seconds.

"We are honored to be certified by BenchmarkPortal once again in all of our call centers," said Robert Box, chief operating officer of Retail Services for Alliance Data. "Our re-certification as a Center of Excellence helps us confirm that we are meeting our long-held commitment to provide high-quality customer and client service. As strong believers of continuous improvement, we continue to invest in tools that enable us to better identify opportunities to enhance the customer experience. For example, providing ongoing education to our call center associates only further improves their ability to address a variety of customer inquiries, which in turn, results in a better experience for those customers. We're very proud of our call center associates and delighted that our efforts have paid off now for the fourth consecutive review period."

In addition to the customer service functions included in support of its private label, co-brand and commercial credit card programs, Alliance Data provides account acquisition and activation, receivables funding, card authorization, card issuance, statement generation, and marketing and remittance processing services.

About BenchmarkPortal

BenchmarkPortal is the administrator of the Center for Customer-Driven Quality at Purdue Research Park database of contact center metrics, the largest such database in the world. In 2005, BenchmarkPortal received U.S. Patent #6,877,034 for its unique methodology of call center performance evaluation through metric gap analysis. BenchmarkPortal provides industry reports, and professional services for contact centers in the areas of operational metrics, customer satisfaction measurement, and agent satisfaction measurement. For more information about BenchmarkPortal, call 800.214.8929 , or visit our Web site at: www.BenchmarkPortal.com. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

About Alliance Data

Alliance Data (NYSE: ADS) and its combined businesses is North America's largest and most comprehensive provider of transaction-based, data-driven marketing and loyalty solutions serving large, consumer-based industries. The Company creates and deploys customized solutions, enhancing the critical customer marketing experience; the result is measurably changing consumer behavior while driving business growth and profitability for some of today's most recognizable brands. Alliance Data helps its clients create and increase customer loyalty through solutions that engage millions of customers each day across multiple touch points using traditional, digital, mobile and other emerging technologies. Headquartered in Dallas, Alliance Data employs approximately 7,400 associates at 50 locations worldwide.

Alliance Data is a leading provider of marketing-driven credit solutions, and is the parent company of Epsilon®, a leading provider of multi-channel, data-driven technologies and marketing services, and LoyaltyOne™, which owns and operates the AIR MILES® Reward Program, Canada's premier coalition loyalty program. For more information about the company, visit our web site, www.AllianceData.com, or you can follow us on Twitter at www.Twitter.com/AllianceData.

Alliance Data's Safe Harbor Statement/Forward Looking Statements

This release may contain forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. Such statements may use words such as "anticipate," "believe," "estimate," "expect," "intend," "predict," "project" and similar expressions as they relate to us or our management. When we make forward-looking statements, we are basing them on our management's beliefs and assumptions, using information currently available to us. Although we believe that the expectations reflected in the forward-looking statements are reasonable, these forward-looking statements are subject to risks, uncertainties and assumptions, including the anticipated effects of the CARD Act and those discussed in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

If one or more of these or other risks or uncertainties materialize, or if our underlying assumptions prove to be incorrect, actual results may vary materially from what we projected. Any forward-looking statements contained in this presentation reflect our current views with respect to future events and are subject to these and other risks, uncertainties and assumptions relating to our operations, results of operations, growth strategy and liquidity. We have no intention, and disclaim any obligation, to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future results or otherwise.

"Safe Harbor" Statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995: Statements in this presentation regarding Alliance Data Systems Corporation's business which are not historical facts are "forward-looking statements" that involve risks and uncertainties. For a discussion of such risks and uncertainties, which could cause actual results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking statements, see "Risk Factors" in the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the most recently ended fiscal year. Risk factors may be updated in Item 1A in each of the Company's Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q for each quarterly period subsequent to the Company's most recent Form 10-K.

SOURCE Alliance Data Systems Corporation



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