Travel agency call centers are intended to complement advisory services of the bricks-and-mortar travel agencies by providing remote advisory services. Currently, they are ill-prepared for giving such advisory services due to their limitations in several areas of their work practice. This article presents the organizational as well as information and communication-related issues in work practice that need to be addressed preparing call centers to sufficiently give advice at the phone using an Internet connection. Resulting design requirements concern trust, information quality, joint problem-solving, and user satisfaction. In order to test the derived design requirements, the TeleSmarttravel system was implemented and evaluated in a preliminary use at a real travel agency call center. Results indicate that a visually enhanced, collaboratively used advisory support system can beneficially influence the advisory for both the agent and the customer and therefore opens new opportunities for an innovative multi-channel advisory approach.
Schmidt-Rauch, Susanne; Schaer, Raphael; and Schwabe, Gerhard, "FROM TELESALES TO TELE-ADVISORY SERVICES IN TRAVEL AGENCIES" (2010). ICIS 2010 Proceedings. 131.