What the World Would Be Like if Call Center Outsourcing Didn’t Exist
It’s precisely a hypothetical question to ask. And if you are already outsourcing call center services, you’ll quickly get the picture of a world where call centers are plucked out and help is not arriving any sooner. Chaos! Fast forward to our era and it’s barely impossible to ignore how the role of call center outsourcing has evolved. From its humble beginnings of performing the tasks of receiving calls and passing them on, call centers now play some really big and critical roles in the super-charged global market space.
So what is the point that we’re driving at? The fact that outsourcing call center services remains up to this day, there is no doubt it will continue to carry on in the future, especially in delivering outsourced call center services for businesses across different industries. In a world that is gradually succumbing to the tempting offer of digital connectivity (e.g., emails, voice mails, texting, etc.), the human toll was huge: the dearth of direct human contact. Thankfully though, call centers preserve the sound of human voice albeit face-to-face contact, and can be a significant business asset in rendering customer support during business transactions.
A powerful advantage for anyone starting up or established, outsourcing customer support services is truly the next best thing for any business in today’s digital landscape. For client credit card companies, for instance, outsourcing call center services allow for the efficient conduct of credit and transaction services. Among small and large enterprises, hiring and outsourcing their call center operations to a vendor from the Philippines, India or China is seen returning their investments in the form of value propositions of service, convenience and trust.
Call Center Outsourcing, Where It All Started
The Internet boom in 1990s was the spark needed to bring outsourcing to the attention of the world. But do you believe that even as far back as the early ship building years of America, outsourcing was already in use? Historically speaking yes, and we will no longer dig into the details about how the initial salvo of outsourcing in the eighteenth and nineteenth century era of America was like back then. Over the years, companies consider outsourcing as a business strategy that is suitable in increasing profits, as well as extend corporate base or market share offered by the ‘economies os scale’. Not until the rapid development in transportation and technology that outsourcing that we know of today was finally born.
During the 1970s and 1980s, business competition has gone global, which as a result brought along major challenges for active businesses. Different organizations from many industries found that their management strategies are no longer enough, worst, it was exhausting their flexibility. What started out as a crises of sorts eventually convinced these organizations to shift their focus toward their business core processes. Technical advancement in the 1980s finally paved the way for offshore outsourcing but it was only in 1990s when companies shift their focus on cost-savings and want the real value of handing-off non-core functions that are indirectly related to the core areas of their business. Eventually, this opened a big door of opportunities for the customer support outsourcing sector.
And the rest, so they say, was history.
Should You Outsource Call Center Operations
Before we proceed farther, let us first define what call center outsourcing is. Simply put, it is a business practice that involves the use of resources like a third party outsourcing firm to handle a specific task that’s essential for your business. In business parlance, it is the use of telesales or telemarketing company to handle a company’s inbound or outbound call center project.
Call center outsourcing vendors that offer outsourced inbound and outbound call centers provide access to skilled telemarketing professionals, account management expertise, remote call monitoring, market testing capabilities and more. Outsourcing call center services are also cited for delivering the following support: improved market coverage, faster ramp-up, launch, and roll-out of campaigns, experience with programs similar to yours and many of the likes.
In the great design of things of everything customer support outsourcing, there is little doubt you’ll reap the following benefits:
- Improved sales and profit targets
- Reduced operational costs
- Improved operational efficiencies
- Increased customer base and lead generation
- Higher qualified leads and closed sales
- Customer retention and loyalty
- Increased market share
How to Measure Call Center Outsourcing Success
If your business is customer service-oriented, outsourcing call center services is one of the best options available for you. Choosing the right call center is important then. Consider especially if you have a high volume customer interaction where your call center representatives might handle hundreds of inbound or outbound calls on a regular basis from a variety of different companies.
Here is a guide on choosing the right call center outsourcing vendor to help you make the most of your investments:
Profitability – Always consider that your investment must be measurable. Often you can measure the profitability or feasibility of customer support outsourcing based on the volume of customer service that your business handles. Consider preparing a realistic feasibility study of just how much it will cost you to create an internal call center department and compare it with the cost of outsourcing. Include the following factors when preparing this document: employee compensation, training cost, equipment and supply purchases, as well as construction or rent costs and maintenance.
Complexity – While it’s true you’ll be able to save out of customer support outsourcing, but it doesn’t mean also that such strategy won’t cost you money in the long term. If your company takes or expects to receive customer calls regularly on technical or complicated issues, an in-house call center who will handle your customer service needs may be a better idea.
Time – If you consider outsourcing call center to third party vendor, weigh the impact that it will bear around your day-to-day operations. Will call center outsourcing free you or your management’s time from responding to customers that will require frequent expert answers? If you realize you or your employees’ time are better spent on other projects, offloading this aspect of your business process might be a smart move. So when examining the costs of outsourcing, include the benefits in your decision.
Customer Needs – Your decision must be anchored on your resources as well. So if you find that your current resources are very limited and meeting or responding to your customer demands and requests become highly impossible, it’s high time to decide in favor of outsourcing customer support services. To make a better decision, crunch the numbers, draw up a comparison, and map out business goals.
Call center outsourcing has plenty of benefits for any business who knows the trade, finds the right strategic sourcing vendor, and are conscious of the obvious risks and opportunities. Getting a third party to handle call center services requires higher degree of oversight.
This means, the business which forges a partnership with a provider must allocate time or manpower to monitor the progress of such arrangement. Done right, outsourcing can make the business but disaster awaits those who played it all wrong.