Companies that outsource their contact center and back office functions need a strong vendor management program to properly locate and manage the right vendor partner in a crowded and chaotic competitive field. Companies that are looking for outside vendors to take over an existing center relationship or move an in-house center to the outside are right to expect big improvements from their decision. There must be a return on investment in the form of
These are just a few of the goals firms spell out to potential contact center vendors.
Too often organizations know precisely why they are disappointed in the existing center partner relationship, but when it comes to choosing the ideal challenger center their goals often fall short of other opportunities besides eliminating the current vendor pain points. What looks great on paper sometimes gets lost in practice. But, once the contract is signed, it can be a costly royal pain in the RFP to give an unsatisfactory vendor the boot. Taking time to define needs beyond the immediate fix is important.
That’s why we’ve come up with a basic primer on measuring the effectiveness of your contact center vendor.
Let’s start by considering a customer service “moment of truth.” Contact centers are brand ambassadors. The best vendors are as committed to successful delivering their clients’ message and performance as their clients are. This isn’t industry-specific; customer retention is everyone’s first priority. The best vendors will do much more than meet baseline KPIs – they will add value that advances your brand. If they aren’t doing that, show them the door. Hanging on to a poor performer is too costly to risk.
Here are a few starter tips for building a vendor evaluation and management program that gets you where you want to be.
Align expectations internally before vendor names are on the table. It’s not enough to know the current vendor isn’t meeting your needs. Make a detailed roadmap of where you want the investment in your vendor to take your department, division or product line. Get input from internal stakeholders, and compare that to past results. If you’re replacing a vendor, don’t limit future call center goals based on the results of an unsatisfactory arrangement. If you’re starting from bare bones, it’s critical to establish what value you want from a new vendor prior to sending out an RFP.
Get your metrics in order. This might seem like an obvious softball, but it’s not. Understand what, why and how you want to measure performance so you can communicate your expectations clearly. Identifying and listing your metrics gives you the necessary standards (above and beyond cost considerations) to measure against. Also understand what your budget will be. There is a cost to meeting each metric. Expecting too much or creating metric conflicts could cause you to overspend. Consider asking the outsourcer to suggest changes that save money if budget is a big concern.
Rethink your RFP. The same applies to technology. There are daily changes in the contact center industry. Make sure your customer base is a heavy user of each contact channel. Understand covering each additional channel will cost more. Make sure you understand your customer and have current needs right sized. If your RFP is more than a year old, it’s time for a refresh. Have your team closely review each requirement and eliminate dated information and add the new definitions.
Align expectations externally. Put every potential new vendor’s feet to the fire as early in the process as possible. A good vendor will commit to meeting as many realistic goals as they can. However, a great vendor will prove that they can step up to the plate with a history of demonstrated successes. The list of wins doesn’t need to be long, as long as it clearly shows that the vendor can knock your specific KPIs out of the park and deliver added value to your organization. Contact centers are process driven, so having a vendor that can demonstrate process control and compliance may be more important than specific industry experience.
Take care not to get bogged down in a numbers game, though – at this early stage you’ll want to see a stunning view from 30,000 feet. You’ll learn pretty quickly if the close-up view isn’t as compelling.
Standardize baseline questions. Giving identical baseline questions to all candidates will enable you to do more accurate apples-to-apples comparisons on straightforward metrics. This is especially important for pricing, technology and process questions. The use of tables and closed end questions can help with the early pass-fail review process.
Encourage communication. You can learn a great deal by asking for and sharing business insights. While this may fly in the face of ancient wisdom that says precious little info should be shared with vendors, when it comes to contact center management the benefits of sharing your business goals will outweigh the risks. You’ll better understand how the vendor thinks strategically and allow them to describe their management approach to your specific opportunity. This will help you be better equipped to gauge their ability to execute. A fresh set of eyes can open yours to possibilities you may not have considered in the past. A seasoned contact center vendor will think in terms of your strategy, and won’t just slide by on meeting baseline requirements.
Think like a partner. There’s nothing that will kill a relationship faster than ambiguity. The upside? Clarity on the client side encourages reciprocity from the vendor side. The best contact center vendors not only value your transparency, they will leverage it to your advantage by helping you reach your highest goals. They often see opportunities for process improvements, and should be unafraid to challenge status quo thinking if it’s dragging down your metrics. Be upfront about expansion plans so that your vendor can adjust quickly.
Chemistry is real. Because contact center operations are enormous ships that take tremendous time, energy and money to turn around, its important to choose a vendor with staying power and the ability to forge lasting relationships. The best vendors will get along with everyone in your company from the corner office to the front door. Do their business values mirror those of your firm? How do they operate? Who are their customers? How do they measure their own success? Are they willing to take ownership of your objectives and future plans? A strong working relationship and trust at all levels will create a more agile and flexible operation when changes are implemented.
In Nine Tips For Choosing A Compliant Outsourcing Provider we dive into more details about why these questions matter, and offer more insight on what sets a great contact center vendor apart from a good one.
Any decent contact center vendor should be able to hit your baseline metrics on the nose. An exceptional vendor will commit to your company’s success as if it were their own.
At GCS, we are serious about people, process and technology. We believe in the power of people to accomplish great things when they have access to the proper training, supervisory support, and technology. We support our clients with proven processes and a dedication to their business objectives. We are avid students and skilled teachers, committed to creating truly great customer experiences.
One of the aspects of contact center excellence that we are passionate about is training. Our methods transform good customer service reps into stellar ones, building skills, confidence and expertise. In circumstances where employee retention has been an issue, we’ve been able to stabilize the workforce and dramatically increase productivity and CSAT scores.
We’ve recently developed an online soft skills training program for exceptional customer service: Say This … Not That, Most of the Time. Whether your agents are on the phone, in chat, or face-to-face, this program offers proven strategies for building the interpersonal skills – soft skills – that agents need to excel. It’s an amazing, effective addition to every customer service arsenal. You can even sign up to get our super helpful Soft Skills Tip of the Week! To learn more, go here.
Do you have an active RFP or looking for a challenger to your existing relationship? We would like to speak with you, please Contact Us today.
Publish Date: August 17, 2016 5:00 AM
|1.)||Acqueon Technologies Inc.|
Acqueon's AI-driven conversational engagement software enables sales, marketing and service organizations to engage in emotionally connected dialogs with customers via their channel of choice for significantly improved results. The Acqueon suite adds multichannel campaign management, contact center analytics, desktop, and CRM connectors for your contact center software of choice, including Amazon Connect, Cisco, Nice inContact, and Twilio. Acqueon conversational engagement software leverages the Acqueon IQ platform to aggregate data from the various applications, assemble rich customer contexts, and drive next-best-action using powerful statistical and predictive models.
PH: +1 888-946-6878
|2.)||Call Center Studio|
Call Center Studio
Call Center Studio is the world’s first call center built on Google and is one of the most secure and stable systems with some of the industry’s best reporting. It is one of the most full-featured enterprise grade systems (with the most calling features, one of the best call distribution, outbound dialing features and integrations—including IVR, AI Speech Recognition, blended inbound/outbound calling and includes Google’s new Dialogflow and Speech API. Call Center Studio is the absolute easiest to use (with a 10 minute setup), and is the price performance leader with lower equipment cost and less setup time.
PH: +1 512-872-7565
|3.)||Cloud IT Services GmbH|
Dialfire offers you a complete call center solution that is simple and intuitive to use and adapts to your needs. It's completely cloud-based, saving you the hassle of setting up a phone system and installing software. In addition to predictive dialing and call blending of inbound calls, you can create personalized campaigns through an intuitive and easy-to-use interface. Features include automated workflows and full control over the agent screen.
You can see the full list of features here:
CList for Outbound Campaigns Management
CList by Comsys is an application that helps contact centers enhance the performance of their outbound campaigns. It accomplishes that by enabling the planning and execution of sophisticated communication strategies. Additionally, the AI-powered module of CList extends the possibilities of outbound campaigns delivering unprecedented results.
Comsys is a provider of οmnichannel customer engagement solutions that assist companies around the world in delivering unique customer experiences. For the last 15 years, Comsys designs and implements complex projects for clients from the outsourcing, financial services, telecommunications, and retail sectors. Comsys enjoys strategic partnerships with t...
Dialer software that makes customer contact pain free, so your team aren’t worried about complex technology and can focus on what they do best. Dramatically increase agent productivity using a variety of dialers, combined with AI, leveraging data-driven contact strategies to ensure the right agent is contacting your customers at the right time.
Take control, and ensure your team are on-message by designing the perfect agent interface with a drag-n-drop visual WYSWYG editor.
Rotate CLIDs, and auto-wrap certain calls to ensure maximum agent productivity and performance.
|7.)||Cloud IT Services GmbH|
Companies of all sizes rely on the cloud-based call center platform Dialfire and its powerful predictive dialer. Dialfire is ready to use within minutes and easily personalizable. From small ad-hoc to large multi-step campaigns, Dialfire offers high scalability. Adapt customer masks and automate workflows per mouse click. Integrated scripting and APIs ensure a smooth connection with external systems.
PH: +49 351 44529800
With Megadialer you will get a customized call center software. With the creation of personalized questions, surveys and sales script you will have the information you need from your customers quickly and efficiently. Improve the performance of your agents with a 100% online contact center, real-time analytics and predictive dialer to optimize the time between one call and another.
All rates include:
Instant Call Reports
Call Layout after Completion
Your Own Caller ID
Automatic sending of Mails
Incoming Call Management
Real-time Activity Panels
Call Lists for Agents
Different Levels of Administration
PH: +34 952 667 511
Advanced outbound solution including predictive dialing, featuring patented technologies such as Live Person Detection (LPD™) and SNoDrop™ using Artificial Intelligence to deliver compliant & effective predictive dialing with 0% abandoned call rates. The solution includes its own CRM system as well as visual campaign creation and management as well as automated data import and export capabilities. The package comes with highly visual and open call scripting technology and an SDK (Software Development Kit) is also available for embedding the dialer into your own user front end.
PH: +44 345 0181 070
Reach more contacts, in less time with PhoneBurner. Powering thousands of client and millions of calls, our cloud-based software eliminate repetitive tasks so agents have up to 4x more live conversations. Unlike other dialers, PhoneBurner delivers 100% delay-free connections with no awkward pause. Conversations start off with promise, not hangups.
- Call 60-80 contacts per hour, per agent
- Instantly leave voicemails
- Send 1-touch emails
- Automate workflows and call logging
- Record and transfer calls
- Access reporting and analytics
- Intelligently distribute leads
- Dial from local Caller IDs
- Get free white-glove onboarding
Scales to any size team with no contracts, no setup fees, and no per minute charges. Start a free trial without a credit card.
A predictive dialler is an outbound call system that automatically dials from a list of telephone numbers. Also known as Power or Auto dialers it will automatically help agents make more calls, generate higher rates of connections, increase conversions, manage voicemail, no-answers and disconnected numbers.
We’ve made it easy to get started, we offer packages to best suit your needs and don't tie you into long term contracts. Don't take our word for it take out a no-commitment free trial!
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