The recognition comes off the back of DSG's partnership with Nando's and the Maharishi Institute. The partnership strives to deliver an integrated customer experience, while remaining focused on driving sustainability of the Maharishi Institute, South Africa's first virtually free university.

The Engage Awards, which is organised by Engage Business Media, intends to encompass all areas of excellence within customer and employee engagement. The finalists span 18 awards categories and have contributed over 100 entries. 

"We are extremely proud to have been nominated as a finalist in the Best Outsourcing Category, as it allows us to showcase our unique approach with Nando's and the Maharishi Institute," says Brandon Meszaros, CEO of CXG (a DSG business).

"[Our approach] demonstrates not only the essential aspects of integrated customer experience, but also showcases our focus on the students' personal growth, education and future career development," adds Meszaros.

The integrated contact centre, which launched in March 2018, today consists of a vibrant and young workforce blended with students and experienced contact centre individuals. The workforce is trained to deliver and remain aligned to key efficiency, effectiveness and quality outcomes.

Through the Maharishi Institute, DSG says that it is able to leverage the continent's first student 'learn and earn' contact centre, driving sustainability on behalf of the Maharishi Institute — that has, since 2008, educated over 18 000 students with a remarkable 97% economic placement rate.

The contact centre reports that it has achieved an order conversion ratio of 75%, with an average of 160 000 orders placed per month. It has trained over 150 students who have gained practical experience and are now employed within a number of other sectors.

Daryl Shapiro, head of customer care at Nando's, says, "Customer experiences are no longer an isolated piece of our business but part of a larger customer engagement strategy. In order to build loyal relationships that extend and last, we understand the need to view customer engagement across our enterprise." 

"We believe that the contact centre enables us to support experiences and engagements with our brand that future shockproof our business, while changing lives, and we are excited that we are gaining global recognition for the difference we are making locally," adds Shapiro.

Dr. Taddy Blecher at the Maharishi Institute says, "While focused on customer experience, this partnership also provides a recognised and practical approach to 'learning and earning' to close the skills gap, while contributing to the sustainability of the university. We are very proud of the award nomination that DSG has received here ?— reaffirming the excellence of this business model." 

This year's winners will be announced at a ceremony at the Westminster Park Plaza Hotel, United Kingdom, on Monday, 11 November. The ceremony aims to attract the attendance of customer and employee engagement professionals from across the globe. The event will be hosted by Hugh Dennis.

"We are really excited to attend this year's awards as a finalist and look forward to seeing some of the industry's most innovative businesses being recognised for their remarkable work," concludes Meszaros.

For more information, visit You can also follow the Engage Awards on Twitter.