If you’re already managing an in-house call center, you know that navigating the natural peaks and valleys of call volume presents a complex challenge when calculating call center costs. You know that the ratios and formulas are multifaceted, which can make a direct comparison between in-house and outsourcing a little difficult.
This blog post isn’t going to address the indirect costs of taking your eye off of your core business in order to run an in-house call center - that’s a discussion for another day. But when you need to present a business case complete with outsourced contact center costs, you need to break down the numbers in a way that makes sense. Below, we look at the multiple factors that go into the call center cost comparison.
In addition to investing in agent recruiting when you staff and train an in-house team, you’re paying for every minute of the time they’re there. From the moment they enter the office, their time is spent settling in for the day, taking calls, taking breaks, engaging in training and coaching activities, as well as the time spent in ready waiting during lulls in arrival patterns. Each minute affects your bottom line.
In sharp contrast, when you outsource your call center, you’ll only be paying for productive agent time. Typically, you can project an estimated 85% productivity rate, so instead of paying 100% of your agent’s work hour, you can cut those hourly costs by about 15%. That represents significant savings right out of the gate.
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When staffing your in-house call center, you’ll also have to hire front line supervisors or coaches as well as program managers for the team. In doing so, you’ve just added yet another line to your call center budget.
In contrast, when you outsource your call center, program management costs (including those frontline supervisors) should be automatically included in the agent rate. (If your vendor doesn’t include program management in your per minute or per hour rate, we should talk…)
Every successful call center needs to keep a painstakingly close eye on quality assurance. The metrics produce an abundance of data, and include factors like first-call resolution, response times, average handling time, customer satisfaction, service level, net promoter scores, and more.
A great call center reporting team will go beyond the gathering of data to offering value-added analysis that supports your decision-making. Every call center needs information management professionals supported by appropriate tools and technology to fully leverage the data you absorb daily. Add at least two more budget lines to your in-house call center here. On the other hand, when you consider outsourcing your call center, this cost is usually already tied into the agent rate.
With in-house call centers, you’re on the hook for every component of the supporting infrastructure. These overhead costs include your facilities, telephony, workstations, and more; not to mention any IT staff you’ll need to hire to provide tech support.
This is a cost that isn’t going to go away - every three to five years, you’re going to start thinking about upgrading. Ask your tech team: major systems upgrades are expensive - both in terms of direct expense and the time and focus of your internal tech resources.
Once again, in an outsourced arrangement, the hard and soft costs of systems, maintenance, and upgrades are going to be carried by your call center partner.
When considering your in-house call center overhead costs, don’t forget the foundational expense of recruiting, payroll and taxes, and benefits management. Additionally, these costs can fluctuate depending on your turnover rate. And of course, the HR staff themselves need to be factored into your calculations.
As with all the above factors, HR expenses are by default included in your outsourced per minute or fixed rate.
Finally, there are a number of advantages you’ll gain from outsourcing that will add further value to your investment, which may not be realized through in-house efforts. These factors result in both reduced FTE and increased potential for overall call center success. They include:
Though this is an abbreviated guide, it should give you a good idea of how all your costs break down so you’re not left trying to compare apples to oranges. At Blue Ocean, we know that calculating call center costs can be a big headache.
About Andrew O'Brien:
Andrew O’Brien is a results-driven strategic thinker. In his 15+ years with Blue Ocean, Andrew has been instrumental in creating strategic solutions that build loyalty and help drive revenue for clients with complex support requirements. Under Andrew’s watch, the operational culture of Blue Ocean is one of constant striving for even greater efficiency, for dynamic innovation, and for the relentless pursuit of best-in-class performance.
About Blue Ocean Contact Centers:
We thrive on delivering critical customer service solutions that go beyond transactional interactions. As such, our goal is to enhance lifetime customer value, providing support that is a reflection of your brand promise, even in high-pressure, complex customer service scenarios.
Published: Wednesday, May 20, 2015
Accordia Solution CIS
Accordia Solution is an innovative developer of seamlessly integrated cost-effective omnichannel Contact Center Solutions specifically targeted at the micro, small and medium operations.Our core business model involves the development and marketing of IP Telephony and IP Contact Center Solutions. We also strive to develop customer interaction solutions which include contact center and customer relationship management (CRM) that enhances Customer Experience Of The Future (CEOTF) and optimizes agent productivity.
Our flagship product, the Accordia Customer Interaction Suites (CIS), offers comprehensive functionality by helping your business meet and exceed the level of service in line with...
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|3.)||Alcor Consulting, Inc.|
Omnichannel contact center platform which can be deployed on-premise, private cloud or public cloud subscription. Our contact center provides all of the modern features expected in a full contact center solution. Includes voice, SMS, chat, email, and social media integration. Built-in integrations for all major CRM's (Plus a built-in CRM). Survey module and QA module are also available.
Genesis Intelligent Series
Genesis is the latest advancement in Amtelco’s long line of call center solutions. This call center technology is entirely software-based and virtualized, with cloud-based capability. Genesis provides skills-based automatic call distribution (ACD), built-in speech recognition, text-to-speech (TTS), and voice services to improve call routing and management.
|5.)||Arise Virtual Solutions|
The Arise Platform
Arise is a pioneer of on-demand customer management business process outsourcing solutions, headquartered in Florida. Through the cloud-based Arise Platform, Fortune 50 and other companies connect to Service Partners who deliver authentic, loyalty-building interactions with their customers. Delivering radical flexibility to meet even extreme contact volume fluctuations, the award-winning Arise Platform is an innovative alternative to the traditional contact center.
Aspect Via is the premier large-enterprise cloud contact center platform and solution featuring best-of-breed contact management and workforce optimization applications. Cloud neutral technology enables businesses to choose the cloud, hosted or hybrid deployment environment they prefer.
Astute Agent gives your agents everything they need to work cases confidently and efficiently. This modern case management CRM is the preferred choice for Consumer Relations and Customer Care teams who support some of the world’s most prestigious brands.
Astute Agent balances agent efficiency with customer experience. Here’s how:
- Automated email responses
Using natural language processing, Astute Agent reads incoming customer emails and automatically supplies a response to agents to review and send.
- Auto-populated case fields
AI capabilities automatically suggest reason codes, product codes, and other case information, saving agents minutes per case.
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INBOX allows any digital interaction to be blended into single or multiple queues with zero service interruption with implementation. Organising them by business context with smart tagging and search filters, the events can be automatically prioritised and categorised. Automating the route to the correct agent or business orchestration rule. It also connects with all your social media channels, enabling you to respond and route accordingly in real-time. Customer sentiment is also indicated. Use it to measure trends across your business or by a single event so that your agents can easily prioritise responses.
|9.)||Brook Trout Solutions|
CCaaS, SIP Trunking, SD WAN, Interconnectivity
Brook Trout Solutions provides Technology Guide services to help Contact Centers to the best possible solution for their business. This includes:
CCaaS: Talk Desk, Five 9s, Nice, Genesys and more
SIP Trunks: Many Global Providers to lower cost and improve operational efficiency
SD WAN: Connect to customers rapidly with the latest network technology to scale with flexibility.
Our service are at no cost to our customers. We look forward to meeting you!
|10.)||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.
|11.)||Call Tracking Metrics|
CallTrackingMetrics is the only contact center solution with marketing attribution software built in. Our powerful UCaaS platform lets you know upfront who is calling in, what campaigns they were referencing, and their previous history with your company. Partnering this data with tools to automate and streamline your team’s workflow frees you up to focus on truly delighting your customers.
Conditionally direct calls, texts, chats and forms based on:
• Actions the customer has taken on your website
• Whether they’ve previously contacted your business
• Which agent they last interacted with
• Custom criteria unique to your business needs
• The location nearest to your customer
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For sales-based call centers, where margins are so tight, it’s all about closing. Thanks to CallShaper, inbound or outbound call center directors can have a dynamic, highly flexible platform that enables sales agents to focus on making the sale.
Thanks to CallShaper’s flexibility, call center directors who are managing multiple vendors from multiple locations can have everything they need on one platform that offers 99.999% reliability. And when it comes to reporting, CallShaper has no equal in providing real-time transparency.
With CallShaper, clients quickly find that they are better able to manage efficiencies at the sales rep level – and make more money!
|13.)||Cloud Call Center Search|
From AI - WFO and everything in between!
Cloud Call Center Search has spent hundreds of hours evaluating and vetting leading cloud software applications (Omni-Channel, Artificial Intelligence, Business Intelligence, Workforce Management and many others) and their actual use in the trenches with real-world clients. As a result, we understand the strengths and weaknesses of cloud-based call center software solutions. At NO charge, Cloud Call Center Search will match your organization with the cloud software providers that are the best fit to drive positive ROI in your customer experience, sales, and back-office operations.
|14.)||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:
Cloud contact centre technology with built in gamification tools, workforce optimiser, omni-channel, speech analytics, artificial intelligence, quality assurance, PCI-DSS payment platform, form builder and much more features. All seamlessly integrating with almost 100% of your inhouse applications & CRM systems - creating one powerful workflow platform. Increasing productivity, customer engagement, saving you cost. Available in opex model - pay per license per month. No binding contracts with NO cost for 24/7/365 support and full training with built in SLA.
Consilium AWS and Amazon Connect Offering
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Cloud contact software that makes customer contact pain free, so your team aren’t worrying about complex technology and can focus on what they do best. Take control, and design the perfect agent interface with a drag-n-drop visual editor. Combined with AI, leverage data-driven contact strategies to ensure the right agent is contacting your customers at the right time & on the right channel.
Content Guru makes engagement easy. A global leader in cloud communications solutions, we deliver off-the-shelf and bespoke customer engagement and cloud contact centre services, through the multi-award-winning 𝘀𝘁𝗼𝗿𝗺® platform.
Europe’s largest Customer Engagement and Experience platform, 𝘀𝘁𝗼𝗿𝗺, brings together intelligent automation, third-party systems integration, and on-demand scalability to enhance all customer communication functions. With true omni-channel engagement capabilities, 𝘀𝘁𝗼𝗿𝗺 gives organisations the power to create consistent and seamless experiences for customers, inspiring loyalty and powering success.
Convoso is the #1 dialer software for outbound lead gen/sales-related contact centers. Our cloud-based omnichannel solution solves the biggest frustrations call centers have with their dialer, including:
*Caller ID reputation
*Low contact rates
*Limited insight into list performance
*Time wasted resetting lead lists
*Poor answering machine detection
Customers report dramatic increases in contact rates of up to 300%, delivering more conversions and significantly improved ROI.
CSX Cloud provides a full omnichannel cloud-based turn-key customer communications solution as a service based on a monthly subscription with no long term commitments. Our easy to use solution and top-notch customer service makes it an easy choice to get started today.