German Call Center - ContactCenterWorld.com Blog
Contact centers must always deliver an outstanding customer experience. Poor services can drive clients away, leading to plummeting revenues. On the contrary, delivering positive experiences help you acquire new customers and keep existing ones.
One way to enhance consumers’ experiences is to speak to them in their native language. By eliminating lingual barriers, you can effectively communicate with a multicultural clientele. This promotes understanding and builds trust between brands and customers.
Because of this, many companies partner with multilingual or bilingual call centers, which enables them to reach diverse sectors and mobilize new markets. However, this strategy alone isn’t enough to uplift the customer experience.
Here are five steps you can take to improve the quality of the services you provide to customers.
1. Develop agents’ soft skills.
Soft skills, also called people or interpersonal skills, include agents’ communication, leadership, problem solving, and conflict resolution abilities. All these are indicative of one’s emotional intelligence and ability to relate to others.
You may expect these skills to come naturally to all call center employees. In reality, however, they’re harder to develop, as they require an increased self-awareness.
Through regular coaching, you can help your agents develop these skills. Over time, this will allow them to communicate more effectively with customers and solve highly complex issues. Both of these can improve the customer experience.
2. Set realistic customer support goals.
Make sure that the goals you set are achievable, considering the resources, people, and tools that you have at your disposal. Setting impossibly high standards can place your agents under undue stress, which leads to low morale and poor performance.
Plus, setting realistic goals will allow you to acknowledge your strengths and limitations. From here, you can make the necessary enhancements to boost the quality of your services.
3. Build a customer-centric organization.
To build a customer-centric team, you need to get to know your target customers. Discover their needs, wants, and expectations, and always keep these in mind as you devise customer support strategies. This way, you can calibrate your contact center practices in ways that will allow you to meet consumers’ standards.
4. Provide multichannel support.
Customers appreciate brands that can provide 24/7 customer support. They also tend to gravitate toward companies that offer services in several platforms, such as via social media, live chat, email, or the phone. When you’re present in multiple platforms, you give customers the freedom to choose how they want to contact you. By giving them this kind of flexibility, you can instantly improve the customer experience. This will help you foster trust and loyalty among your market.
Publish Date: June 22, 2017 5:00 AM
In a competitive business landscape, you need to make sure that your brand can stand out over its competitors. One way to do this is to keep enhancing the caliber of the customer experience you deliver. Here, you will need to collaborate with your customer service provider. That way, both of you can explore ways to keep your customers delighted.
Here are 10 tips to improve your customer support interactions.
1. Listen intently to customers.
Listening is a highly critical component of the overall customer care process. It is not enough for call center agents to hear what customers have to say, they need to give their undivided attention to understand the issues at hand. Within the duration of the call, they must be able to pick up crucial details that will help them to identify the main source of the problem and provide an effective solution.
2. Instead of scripts, provide guidelines.
These days, customers want personalized services from brands, so the last thing they would want is to talk to agents who sound robotic and monotonous.
When you require your call center agents to use scripts, they may end up sounding too stiff and uncaring over the phone. It’s generally better to provide customer support guidelines instead. This way, they’ll gain a good idea on how best to handle certain situations. The advantage here is that they will still be able to exercise their resourcefulness and creativity as they solve customer issues.
3. Offer self-service options.
With the widespread availability of Internet-enabled devices, more and more consumers prefer to independently seek solutions to the issues they experience. They look up their issues online to learn how to fix their problems on their own. Doing so lets them avoid the hassle of trying to reach a human agent via the phone.
You should thus make it easy for customers to find the right answers to their complaints or queries. FAQs pages, how-to videos, and downloadable product manuals can be a big help to your customers.
4. Deliver customer service in multiple channels.
Modern consumers use several channels to seek customer support. Through their smartphones, they may contact you via social media, email, or live chat. At times, when facing urgent issues, they may also call you via the phone.
Your call center must thus be present in all these channels. This makes everything more convenient for customers, as they’ll be able to reach you anytime using any means available to them. This is also a good way to give them more control over their own customer experience.
5. Adopt a friendly yet professional tone.
Although agents are free to be themselves when interacting with customers, they must still act in a professional manner. A lighthearted but firm tone of voice is recommended because it will help them sound both accommodating and authoritative. This can encourage the customer to open up about their concerns and trust that they are taken care of. As such, avoid adopting an aggressive tone and try not to sound less assertive.
6. Provide your call center agents with the right tools.
Don’t expect your employees to perform well if they’re not equipped with the right customer support tools. For instance, a customer relationship management (CRM) software can help them understand customers better. This tool collects consumer information, giving agents a full view of each customer’s data, including product/service preferences, past purchases, and transactions. With this capability, agents can personalize each interaction according to the customer’s preferences.
7. Call your own hotline.
Sure, you have a team of quality assurance analysts to ensure the quality of your customer interactions. But in addition to this, you may also want to call your own hotline and pretend to be a customer to help you spot the aspects of your services that need improvement. For instance, you’ll be able to evaluate your interactive voice response (IVR) system, customers’ typical waiting time, and agents’ performance. Afterwards, you can create an actionable plan on how to improve your services.
8. Hire experts who can train your agents.
To sharpen your agents’ skills and make sure they can meet your standards, it’s best to hire customer relations experts who can train them. Make sure to hire trainers with a significant background on customer support. That way, they can train your agents in several areas at once—communication skills, building rapport with customers, product knowledge, and others.
9. Anticipate and prevent future problems.
There are plenty of ways to anticipate customers’ issues. You may keep tabs on recurring problems, ask customers about the most common issues they experience, and analyze patterns or trends among the complaints you’re getting. Once you’ve identified the top issues that customers encounter, you’re one step closer to putting a permanent stop to them.
10. Keep your promises.
When your call center agents make promises—no matter how big or small—they should be able to fulfill them. For instance, don’t keep a customer waiting if they’ve been told to expect a response within a certain time frame. This way, you don’t get a customer’s hopes up unnecessarily. Failing to keep your word can be bad not just for the customer experience but for your brand’s reputation as well.
Publish Date: May 2, 2017 5:00 AM
As an entrepreneur, you probably already know how important communication is when it comes to building a strong business partnership. When two organizations communicate with one another regularly and clearly, they’re assured that one another’s expectations are being met. It also helps them avoid potential conflicts.
However, cultural differences can complicate outsourcing arrangements. When you’re working with a bilingual call center, remember that they process your messages according to their own cultural context. Intercultural communication often breeds misunderstandings. This means you have to adjust your communication techniques by considering the cultural traits of the person you’re talking to.
Once you become familiar with the culture of your customer service provider, you’ll be able to set goals together. It then becomes easier to achieve these goals, as you and your provider would be able to understand one another completely. To help you with this, here are five tips for effective communication with an outsourcing company.
1. Specify your requirements.
As much as possible, always be specific when communicating your standards, objectives, and requirements to your provider. It helps to have a document that enumerates all these aspects and explains them in detail. This would give your outsourcing program a clear direction that both you and your contact center must work toward. Some of the things you should emphasize are your service level agreements, the channels to be used, the brand image to be projected, as well as quality monitoring metrics to be used.
2. Be objective.
Refrain from injecting your personal biases or emotions when discussing work-related matters with your bilingual call center. Disagreements may be inevitable, but be sure to express your ideas in a professional manner. Avoid negative statements such as “You’re wrong” or “I don’t like your suggestions.”
Instead, voice out your insights in a tactful but straightforward manner. Always remember that your business partnership is at stake during these situations. Treat your provider as a trusted friend, but be prepared to stand your ground if you disagree with them.
3. Respect cultural differences.
If you want a truly smooth-sailing relationship with your provider, exert an effort to discover more about their culture. Familiarity with your business partner’s cultural practices is a prerequisite of effective intercultural communication. Respect the differences you may encounter. Don’t impose your own beliefs and traditions, and always keep an open mind when communicating with your provider.
4. Communicate regularly.
To keep track of your customer service program, make sure to communicate regularly with your bilingual call center. At the onset of the partnership, establish a communication method and schedule and stick to it. One of the best ways to manage your outsourced project effectively is to maximize the use of video calls. For matters that aren’t too urgent, you may use email instead. Just be sure that each interaction is productive and relevant.
5. Provide feedback.
Providing feedback to managers, team leaders, and agents can have a huge impact on their efficiency and productivity. For instance, complimenting them for a job well done boosts their morale and motivates them further to perform better. On the other hand, constructive feedback will encourage them to improve aspects that must be optimized.
Publish Date: September 26, 2016 5:00 AM
Call monitoring is one of the prerequisites of high-quality bilingual customer service. Because your German-speaking customers require a special kind of care, you must make it a point to listen to customer calls and inspect whether they satisfy your established standards.
Thus, part of your customer service outsourcing plan should be to build an efficient quality monitoring program. This will ensure that clients are receiving the best quality of customer service as agents continuously work on the responsibilities they’re handling.
Here are some tips to maintain a stellar quality among your bilingual services.
1. Choose your team carefully.
For quality monitoring, you must build a team of qualified professionals to inspect and oversee customer transactions. Your monitoring staff should be extremely knowledgeable about everything relevant to customer service especially in a cross-cultural setting. These people should be able to understand the language being spoken by your agents and customers. Other desirable skills are technical know-how, familiarity with call center technologies, and exceptional attention to details.
2. Connect your quality monitoring team with your call center team.
Your bilingual call center team and your call monitoring team should have a closely knitted relationship. The monitoring staff does not function to catch erratic agents; instead, they aim to streamline the process of delivering customer service. A disconnect between these two teams can only result in inefficient implementation of policies and processes that could otherwise improve the entire scheme of customer care.
3. Use more than one method of monitoring.
As much as possible, you want to gain a full and unbiased view of the quality of your bilingual services. This is impossible to achieve if you’re depending on just one quality monitoring method. A wide range of methods should be deployed to analyze every aspect of your performance. This includes call scoring, real-time monitoring, gathering customer feedback, and even agent coaching.
4. Act quickly based on the results.
Setting your eyes on continuous improvement will ensure high-quality bilingual call center services in the long run. However, call monitoring must not be perceived by agents as a negative tactic that could compromise their job security. Instead, employees should realize how integral it is in building a strong and reliable company that places utmost importance to its customers.
Publish Date: June 30, 2016 5:00 AM
If you’re running a business with German customers, perhaps you’re thinking of outsourcing to a German-speaking contact center to provide better services to your market. However, this doesn’t mean that you’re completely free of all management-related responsibilities.
For instance, employee training would remain a major component of offshoring. When you outsource to a bilingual call center, you must also make sure that your agents have the tools and resources they need to serve your customers better.
To make remote management easier and to aid in your outsourced team’s training needs, here are the five tools you need.
1. A file-sharing application
There are several file-sharing applications available online, such as Dropbox, Box, and Google Drive.
These web-based programs allow collaborators to upload various files in different formats, which can be easily accessed anytime across any type of device. They’re far more efficient than email, because they keep everything in one place. They are also highly customizable, allowing you to organize your files in the way you want. Therefore, there will be no file retrieval difficulties.
2. Instant messaging
One of the worst things about remote management is that it limits the interaction between the outsourced team and the brand manager. Instant messaging applications like Skype, Google Hangouts, or even Facebook Messenger can be used to bridge this gap.
When looking for a messaging tool for you and your bilingual call center, choose one that is low-cost but enables you to get in touch with your team in a multitude of ways. It must allow for internet voice calls, video conferencing, and other features that you may need.
3. Multimedia tools for online presentations
Of course, employee training can be much more effective with the use of presentations. But since it can be hard for brand managers to personally deliver lectures for the outsourced agents, multimedia tools will definitely come in useful.
For example, there are now online platforms that allow remote teams to conduct meetings and webinars. Adobe Connect and Go To Webinar are just two of the many available applications that will let you do this.
4. A collaborative space
Why not enhance team communication further by using online collaborative spaces? These virtual platforms may be something as productivity-oriented as Google Docs or something as relaxed as social media groups on Facebook. These spaces are great for brainstorming sessions or if you just want a quick catching up with your outsourced contact center agents.
5. A functional knowledge base
Your customer service knowledge base is a repository of all the relevant information, documents, and other resources that your bilingual call center will need as they take care of customers’ requests. This would also contain information on your latest products, promos, or any changes regarding your brand’s operations. Your outsourced agents must have access to this database so they can provide accurate information to customers at all times.
Publish Date: June 3, 2016 5:00 AM
When you hear the word “competition,” you’re probably not thrilled. However, it’s something you can’t really avoid. Competition exists everywhere in the field of business, but it doesn’t mean that you’re automatically doomed to fail when going against other brands. In fact, it presents entrepreneurs an opportunity to differentiate themselves from other firms.
Customer service is one of the things that would allow you to elevate your brand above competitors. If you deliver the kind of service that your customers would remember, more people would keep coming back to you.
In the German market, an entrepreneur’s most crucial task is to capture the attention of their target audience by delivering good customer service. Every call center and brand manager, therefore, must understand the unique cultural traits of German customers, as these may influence their purchasing decisions. Here are some things you should remember about this consumer group.
1. Germans are planners.
Many describe the German culture as a planning culture. Careful planning, whether it be for their daily activities or personal goals, provides them a sense of security. Thus, you can expect a German consumer to deliberate their purchases before actually pushing through with them.
What does this mean for customer support representatives?
When pitching a product or service to a German customer, sales agents shouldn’t expect an instant response. They should give them enough time to weigh their options. A German customer would surely appreciate it if you don’t force them to buy from you.
2. They are reserved and formal.
When talking to a German customer, formal greetings and expressions are important. Call center agents must always adopt a professional and respectful tone when speaking to them. They also expect colleagues to call them by their title and surname, unless they invite others to call them by their first name.
3. They don’t usually believe in unproven claims.
When it comes to business communication, Germans are wary of claims that sound too good to be true. This means that you can’t expect German customers to believe your advertisements if they’re not backed up by reliable evidence.
In order to gain the German customer’s trust, make sure that your advertisements or pitches are informative. Try to present details objectively as much as possible and acknowledge the pros and cons of the products and services you’re offering.
4. You’re expected to speak their language.
One of the most effective ways to capture the German market is to partner with a bilingual call center. This will allow you to save money as you communicate with your target customers using their language. More importantly, German consumers would appreciate the effort you exert in reaching out to them.
Publish Date: April 11, 2016 5:00 AM
Outsourcing has become the go-to solution of many businesses when faced with cost-cutting dilemmas, workforce shortage, or a desire to widen the industry’s knowledge base. Although these are not the only reasons why many companies delve into business outsourcing, it’s proven to be an efficient economic means to improve work processes.
Yet, many business owners would agree that making the decision to outsource is more complicated than it seems. Companies need to scan for potential partners, conduct meetings with them, and filter out the best outsourcing provider. But your responsibility doesn’t stop here.
Watching out for possible failures in the outsourcing process is also a priority task. Therefore, this article lists three common reasons why outsourcing fails and some recommendations on how to prevent them.
1. Rigid, inflexible contracts
For most, if not all, aspects of your business outsourcing venture, a contract between the parties involved would be the defining standard. It’s wise to craft a contract that touches upon all possible concerns that you would have during the entire business partnership. However, contracts that are too rigid would not allow both parties to revise their business practices in cases of special or unforeseen circumstances.
The solution: Set up a regular schedule to revisit an existing contract, and agree to make revisions that would reflect both companies’ best interests.
2. Setting unrealistic goals
Business goals are your roadmap to success. High goal-setting can spike your employees’ motivation and drive productivity inside the workplace, which would be a winning situation for both managers and employees. However, setting unrealistic goals is a different matter altogether. Unrealistic goals are those that your business cannot achieve yet within a specified time frame. This can be influenced by several factors, such as unavailability of required equipment, short time frame, and unpredictable changes in the market.
The solution: With your outsourcing partner, discuss the highest attainable goals that your business partnership can set, and formulate a concrete strategy to fulfill them. Also consider intrinsic and extrinsic factors that could affect your business in the process of goal setting.
3. Hiring the wrong outsourcing partner.
Your outsourcing partner will be responsible for an integral part of your business. It’s therefore important to find an organization that you can trust, one that is led by value-laden and productive managers. Settling with the wrong organization can negatively impact your organization, sales, and revenues.
The solution: Carefully weigh the unique strengths and limitations of your prospective outsourcing provider before signing a deal with them. Design a scrutinizing process before finally choosing an outsourcing partner.
Indeed, making the decision to outsource is difficult. It requires thorough scrutiny, planning, and brainstorming. It’s best to be guided by sound business advice before you proceed to outsource a chunk of your business processes, and doing so can secure you a bright future in your chosen industry.
Publish Date: October 22, 2015 5:00 AM
Outsourcing call center solutions can be a challenging step for any business, especially if done for the first time. The entire selection process alone can be a difficult time if you don’t know which standards to follow when shortlisting your prospective providers.
Ultimately, you want your customer support outsourcing venture to be a success. But before taking the plunge, you need to know the basic facts about partnering with a call center first. Here are the answers to three of the most important questions about outsourcing customer support that you should know:
• How can a call center help your business?
Partnering with a call center means entrusting your customer support platform to an expert provider. Your outsourced team will now handle your main point of contact with your customers while you focus your attention to your core business functions. This can save you a lot of time and money. It is therefore important that your provider has solid plans on how to upgrade your customer service and the resources needed to implement them. Your outsourcing partner can also help you in gathering vital customer insights which you can use to improve your services.
• How do you know which call center you should outsource to?
There are many outsourcing companies offering different kinds of business solutions. You need to choose the one that is equipped with modern customer support resources. Low cost regions, such as the Philippines, are good outsourcing destinations not only because of competitive pricing but quality of services guaranteed by the call centers located here as well. Your main task is to scrutinize and research about your prospective providers. Do not hesitate to raise questions or request for portfolios or proposals. Talk to references, such as past and current clients, and ask for feedback about your prospects.
• How can you avoid experiencing an outsourcing failure?
First of all, you and your call center must agree about your shared customer service goals. You must establish the metrics that you will be using in measuring the success of your outsourcing campaign. Communication lines must also be kept open in the entire duration of your outsourcing venture. As much as possible, you have to be involved in its crucial stages, such as recruitment and training, so that you can be confident that your outsourced team is composed of exceptional talents.
Just like any other business initiative, outsourcing to a call center is an investment that requires careful preparation and planning. The best way to do this is by understanding the basic concepts of call center outsourcing. By reminding yourself about the three pointers above, you can think of better decisions when outsourcing customer support.
Publish Date: May 4, 2015 5:00 AM
The German market is known for their rigorous planning skills. Be it in their professional or personal life, they practice a structured and ordered life to have a sense of security. For business owners, careful planning is a must if they want to partner with a business process outsourcing (BPO) firm.
Outsourcing services has proven its benefits in small and big organizations, which made it a popular choice among business owners. However, venturing right away to this partnership might lead to strains if not carefully planned. As Germans don’t welcome sudden changes, it’s important to assess your needs and expectations before any deals. To ensure the success of your business strategy, here are three questions to think about.
1. What will I gain from outsourcing?
Considering your firm’s strengths and weaknesses can help you weigh your reasons if you already need a helping hand in carrying out goals. If one of your goals is to expand in terms of audience reach and service upgrade, then additional workforce is needed. While you have reliable in-house staff who can juggle their responsibilities, it’s better to have an entirely different team to handle customer-related issues.
Through offshore outsourcing, you’ll be able to focus on core tasks while another team takes good care of your clients’ needs. These highly skilled and experienced agents can serve your German customers 24/7 and accommodate high call volume.
2. Is outsourcing worth the cost?
Budget is always a part of business plans. Since Germans are very particular about the details of any business movements, it’s a must to set clear goals and targets. Additionally, company savings must outweigh the cost once you decide to pursue a partnership overseas.
Actually, outsourcing services to another company saves costs in terms of labor and equipment. Partnering with a provider that is based in a country with cheaper labor like Philippines is a great move. There, you’ll be able to save without compromising the quality of work. Also, BPO companies already have modern facilities to use in setting up your requirements. You no longer need to buy equipment and train people to use it. By entrusting your customer service to a firm with experts, you’d be able to maximize their productivity at a lower cost.
3. What part of my business should I outsource?
Taking a step backwards to see the overall operation process is a good way to assess which tasks can be outsourced to increase your in-house productivity. What part of your business makes the staff divide their tasks to fulfill much tedious work? This is what you need to figure out and decide what department can be best left in the hands of experts for faster and better transactions.
Having a service provider to help you finish the tedious part of your company is extremely helpful. This allows your in-house staff to focus on business operations, instead of always trying to put balance between core and non-core responsibilities.
Without a doubt, outsourcing services can get you on top of the German market. With the streamline of benefits it promises, it can make companies easily decide to outsource. However, to ensure smooth and long-term relationships, it’s still important to ask yourselves these questions to meet the expectations of your German customers.
Publish Date: April 28, 2015 5:00 AM
Making your customer service multilingual is one great way to make your brand globally competitive. Language barriers can prevent you from exploring new markets and welcoming non-English speaking customers. Hence, by outsourcing to a multilingual solutions provider, such as a German call center in the Philippines, you are strengthening both your branding and customer service strategies.
The Philippines demands the lowest operational costs for outsourcing businesses compared to other outsourcing destinations. This enables its local call center companies to offer competitive pricing to international clients, making the country a strategic outsourcing location.
Aside from being a low-cost region, however, there are many reasons why the Philippines is an ideal outsourcing destination for bilingual customer support solutions. Here are some of them:
Strategic geographical location
Many companies that are targeting German-speaking territories often find the Philippines’ location as advantageous and strategic for their business operation hours. Time zone differences have never become a hindrance for Philippine-based bilingual call centers to deliver customer support round-the-clock to almost any country, including European countries where German is the official language. Call centers in the country are experienced in scheduling agents in a way that will accommodate the time-specific needs of their clients.
With many years of experience in the industry, call centers in the Philippines have mastered the art of gathering the best call center resources for international businesses, including workforce. Since the country has become a multicultural hub over the years, Philippine call centers don’t have a hard time finding native German speakers. Every outsourcing company in the country employs stringent agent recruitment and training measures. Proficiency in speaking and writing both the English and German languages are gauged properly before aspiring bilingual professionals are hired as customer service representatives. Newly hired workers customarily receive initial call center training and continuous learning sessions after they have graduated into the production floor.
The Filipino hospitality has always been a major reason why foreign businesses love to outsource to the Philippines. Filipino call center leaders are known for manifesting cultural sensitivity to almost any other culture. More importantly, bilingual call centers in the country pay special attention to cultural knowledge of their bilingual call center representatives. Culture and language training measures are always part of their lineup of quality assurances strategies.
For businesses that cater to diverse customer bases, partnering with a bilingual call center can make customer engagement a smoother process. The Philippines continues to show great promise in helping global businesses expand their reach to new markets through high quality multilingual support. Outsourcing to a German call center in the Philippines is therefore a strategic move if your business wants to attract customers that speak the European language.
Publish Date: March 17, 2015 5:00 AM
Welcome to the official corporate website of German Call Center! Whether you are a business owner who is considering the possibility of outsourcing to us, or a jobseeker hoping to find an open position that suits your skills, we are pleased to have you around. Feel free to browse the different sections to learn more about our company.
But first, we’d like to make a quick introduction. German Call Center is a business process outsourcing (BPO) firm founded in San Carlos, California and operates in the Philippines. We mainly cater to companies with German-speaking customers, so our agents are bilinguals and native-speakers of the German language. Learn more about our beginnings and goals by going to the About Us page.
If you want to see a list of the BPO solutions we offer, you can head on to the Services page where we detail how we deliver customer service and technical support through voice channels and web-based tools like email and live chat.
Our Blog page, on the other hand, is a dedicated space for publishing news about the BPO world and expert insights on the market trends that affect your consumer base and offshore operations.
We also have a section where aspiring German Call Center agents can drop their resumes. There, we listed the benefits that await successful hires as well as the vacant slots for the inbound customer service, tech support, email, or chat accounts that we handle.
We developed our official website not just to introduce our firm to companies, customers, and employees, but also to have one place where we can stay connected with our partners, colleagues, and audiences. We hope to hear from you soon.
Publish Date: November 4, 2014 5:00 AM