One of this year's nominees for the Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce's Small Business Awards, SupportSeven, has evolved in the past five years—growing from a standard call center to a business that uses technology to enhance customer service in a variety of ways, company leaders said.
"We don't have a whole lot of competition in the way we approach customer service," Katie Sanders, director of business development for SupportSeven, said. "The way we handle our business is definitely unique."
Founded in 2007, SupportSeven employs about 150 people who work with clients in a variety of different industries, Pam Borek, vice president of contact center operations, said.
In the next five years, company leaders want to add about 500 new jobs and create another Chattanooga office, officials said.
In addition to providing call center services, in which SupportSeven employees serve as their client's voice via phone, the team has also grown to work in social media and via a multilingual chat platform.
The SupportSeven team responds via social media if a member of the public has a comment or complaint about a client.
And some of the SupportSeven's clients have website features that connect users with a customer service representative via Internet chat.
SupportSeven uses a real-time tool that translates the chat and allows people to ask questions in 52 different languages.
The team also offers training and development services.
"Based on what the client is looking for, we can either develop the content and training materials and put it online [for them to use] or we can deliver it to their trainers or we can deliver it directly to their employees," Sanders said.
The company currently has about seven core clients, and this year marks the second time SupportSeven has been nominated for the chamber's Small Business Award, Borek said.
Out of thousands of similar centers in the United States, SupportSeven is one of 19 with accreditation from the American Teleservices Association Self Regulatory Organization, she also said.
"[That organization] holds call centers to high standards—above what the government regulations are," Borek said.
Editor's note: This is the first in a series of stories about the finalists for the Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce's Small Business Awards.