CCP Games & 5CA

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The Challenge

Iceland-based CCP Games is best known for its flagship title: EVE Online, a complex space-based MMORPG with an intricate in-game economy and entrenched player base. Aside from EVE Online, CCP Games has also published multiple VR action games: EVE Gunjack and EVE Valkyrie.

CCP was looking for a way to provide 24/7 player support to its global player base in their native languages. The need for a highly skilled support team fluent in English, Russian, German, Spanish, Portuguese, and French led CCP to search for an outsourcing partner. That search led to a collaboration with 5CA.

CCP Logo

CCP Games

Founded: Reykjavik, 1998

Best known for: EVE Online, EVE Gunjack, EVE Valkyrie, Sparc

“We already had a strong and stable team in Reykjavik and we wanted to move to a mixed model. We spoke to several companies and 5CA turned out to be most able to offer what we were looking for: A skilled support team fluent in the languages we needed in one single location to enable us to do on-site coaching and training and 5CA was able to accomodate that.

Rafn Herlufsen, Director of Customer Support Global, CCP Games

In 2014, 5CA started building a support team consisting of 5 Game Masters in the Buenos Aires office, a team that has since grown to 30 Game Masters. The team now handles most of the tier 1 support tickets, monitors the EVE servers for any outages and issues and manages the incoming support tickets on a priority basis, giving players who cannot currently play the game priority over other, less time-sensitive issues.

5CA’s Solution

Tier one player support

The 5CA team handles most of the tier one support volume around the clock.

Priority case management

Cases where players are unable to play are handled first

Server monitoring

The 5CA team continuously monitors CCP’s game servers for any outages or issues

The complexity of EVE Online means it takes a long time for a Game Master to be fully versed in the intricacies of the game – around one year – so a highly dedicated and motivated team was needed to take on this challenge.

“We used to release one or two expansions per year and we would see a huge spike in the workload. We’re releasing differently now so the spikes are not as pronounced but we still see it. When we released the Ascension update last year when we added a free to play option to the game there was a gigantic spike which drowned us for a few months. But that again was where 5CA proved its value because 5CA were fantastic during that time. We worked together very closely and scaled the team up. We did a lot of contingency planning and mitigation to be able to handle what we knew would be a big workload. I’d say that if we didn’t have such a great working relationship with 5CA we would have been completely buried.”

Rafn Herlufsen, Director of Customer Support Global, CCP Games

Before working with 5CA, CCP’s Reykjavik team was working around the clock in shifts with Game Masters being present in the CCP office at all hours of the day. Outsourcing the tier 1 volume allowed CCP to let the in-house support team work the same hours as the rest of the Reykjavik office.

“The team here is very mature. Some people have been here 5+ years, some 10+ years. Working 24/7 was no longer a situation that worked for the team. After 5CA had proven themselves and we saw them as a long-term partner 5CA scaled the team to handle 24/7 support and took the Reykjavik team off shifts. That improved morale and quality of life for the guys. Suddenly we were able to include every GM in meetings that they wouldn’t have been able to attend otherwise and we managed to make the team more close-knit.”

Rafn Herlufsen, Director of Customer Support Global, CCP Games

Just a few years later the 5CA team has grown and is training to be able to handle more complex tier 2 volume. CCP’s CSAT scores are at an all time high and the backlog has never been as empty meaning customers get a response much faster than before.

 

The results

Improved CSAT

CCP’s Customer Satisfaction scores are at an all-time high since the start of the collaboration between CCP and 5CA.

Faster response time

CCP’s backlog has never been emptier meaning players receive faster responses to their questions.

Priority-based case handling

Support cases are now handled based on their urgency. Players with urgent issues, such as being unable to access the game, are helped first.

Improved team cohesion

CCP’s Reykjavik team no longer works around the clock in shifts allowing all Game Masters to work the same schedule and attend meetings, improving team cohesion and morale.

“I would say that a key strength for 5CA is flexibility. Every time I have talked about making changes they’ve been able to find a way to do that. This makes it a super positive working experience for me.

I would recommend 5CA to anybody and I feel perfectly comfortable saying that. 5CA for me is a premium company. Not the cheapest but you get what you pay for and for me it’s been a really fantastic working relationship.”

Rafn Herlufsen, Director of Customer Support Global, CCP Games

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