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Article : The Pros and Cons of Contact Center Outsourcing

#contactcenterworld, @inContact

Twenty years ago began a shift to contact center outsourcing to offshore locations, especially the Philippines and India, and away from the local market where customers on the other end of the phone were located. Brands had a very clear business case to cut contact center labor costs by outsourcing to lower-cost offshore locations. First generation ACDs (Automatic Call Distributors) plus significant global telephony and Internet build-outs of the dot-com age made this technically feasible. I’m old enough to remember all the hype and hyperbole that all contact centers would be offshore by 2010. Clearly the pendulum had swung too far in one direction and a total focus on cost reduction led to some notable hiccups in customer satisfaction and retention for early adopters.

Fast forward to today and the outsourcing pendulum has settled in a much more balanced place. Brands recognize the competitive advantage of delivering a great – not only low cost – customer experience (CX) and are taking a much more holistic approach that balances both and often combines multiple strategies for their contact centers: outsourcing offshore, nearshore or work-from-home outsourcing, insourcing the contact center fully in-house, or a hybrid approach that uses outsourcing to cover peaks or off-hours.

Definition of Contact center Outsourcing

Before we jump into the pros and cons of outsourcing your contact center, let’s level-set on what that means. With help from Wikipedia, here is a useful definition:

Outsourcing is an agreement in which one company hires another company to be responsible for an existing internal activity. Outsourcing sometimes involves transferring employees and assets from one firm to another.

Outsourcing includes both foreign and domestic contracting, and sometimes includes offshoring (relocating a business function to a distant country), or nearshoring (transferring a business process to a nearby country). Outsourcing is often confused with offshoring, however, they can be distinguished: a company can outsource (work with a service provider) and not offshore to a distant country. Financial savings from lower international labor rates can provide a major motivation for outsourcing or offshoring. There can be tremendous savings from lower international labor rates when offshoring.


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PROs of Outsourcing your Contact center

  1. Cost reduction: outsourced contact centers to BPOs are able to spread fixed costs like facilities, technology and training across multiple clients. In lower or less predictable volume scenarios, BPOs can also share agents across clients for further efficiency.

  2. 24 x 7 coverage: agent attrition is always a challenge, especially in a tight labor market. By partnering with an outsourcer, especially one that can deliver service from multiple geographies, it can be much more cost effective to staff 24×7 without paying large shift premiums. It also lets a third party expert handle hiring, training, and retention efforts.

  3. Temporary or overflow traffic: sparing yourself the challenge of hiring and downsizing to match seasonal peaks or short-run projects or volume spikes is another big advantage of an outsourcer. By averaging across multiple clients, they can easily balance your volume changes.

CONs of Outsourcing your Contact center

  1. Lack of specialized knowledge: outsourced agents are not your employees and may not be dedicated to your business. This means that they might not be able to represent your brand as consistently as internal employees and may not have the focus to develop specialized knowledge of your products or services.

  2. Consistency vs. continuous improvement: many outsourced contracts are designed to deliver a minimum level of customer service at a fixed cost. Predictability and consistency is good, but this approach may miss opportunities to differentiate on improved customer experience or further reduce costs in the future.

  3. Missed opportunities from customer insights: customer insights from the contact center can be a goldmine to improve your products and services, identify root causes of dissatisfaction, or even spot new business opportunities. Without access to interaction analytics or call recordings from the outsourcer, your business may miss out on these key customer insights.

Considerations for Managing Outsourced Contact centers

Whether you chose to outsource, insource, or a combination of both – you are ultimately on the hook for making sure that the customer service agents represent your brand and deliver a great customer experience. Here are a few management considerations that need careful attention in any option.

Operational efficiency KPIs: ultimately you need to hit your budget and make sure that your operations are as efficient as possible while still delighting customers. Depending on contracts with your BPO, these may managed inside the ‘black box’, however, keeping a pulse on overall contact volume, mix and efficiency is still helpful for longer term planning.

Consolidated routing and reporting: ensuring you have agile and scalable cloud contact center software to manage multiple sites, including work from home agents, is critically important. The right technology to support your contact center can be a key differentiator in selecting a BPO that you’ll use in a hybrid operating model.

Customer satisfaction: holding your internal or outsourced contact center BPO to the highest standards for customer satisfaction and retention is a must. Make sure your internal and outsourced teams can not only report on these metrics, but also have continuous improvement programs in place that combine voice of the customer feedback, agent quality monitoring, and speech and text analytics.

#contactcenterworld, @inContact


About NICE inContact:
Company LogoNICE inContact works with organizations of all sizes to create customer experiences that create deeper brand loyalty and relationships that last. With NICE inContact CXoneTM, a cloud customer experience platform, we combine Customer Analytics, Omnichannel Routing, Workforce Optimization, Automation and Artificial Intelligence, all on an Open Cloud Foundation to help any company transform every single customer interaction.
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Today's Tip of the Day - Assisted Transfers

Read today's tip or listen to it on podcast.

Published: Friday, February 1, 2019

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2021 Buyers Guide Telecoms

 
1.) 
Cloud IT Services GmbH

Dialfire
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:

2.) 
Cloudonix

Cloudonix’s smart voice calls enable frictionless experiences that drive better customer care and faster sales by merging voice and data into a complete service context. Cloudonix add Cloud capabilities to your existing on premise Call Center enabling your agents to work from anywhere in the world. Security, Privacy and more – rapidly deployed and cost effective without replacing your existing systems or retraining your team.

3.) 
Connectica Solutions, LLC

PBX On The Cloud
We provide complete Cloud-based PBX/Phone Systems, including predictive and progressive dialers, phone lines in more than 75 countries and low cost international rates.
We specialize in the US and Latin American market.

4.) 
DiRAD Technologies

AI Powered Contact Center Provider, AI Chat & Voicebot, Enterprise Telephony
Take advantage of the latest customer service innovations with Contact Center, Virtual Assistant, and Interactive Voice solutions for accessible, 24×7 services across multiple channels.

5.) 
Layer One Technologies

Layer One Technologies provides information and communication technology (ICT) services to businesses in the greater Charlotte area. Whatever your cabling needs, we have you covered.

6.) 
Megacall

VOIP services
Stay in contact quickly and easily with your international offices through Megacall.

Megacall will fulfill all your telecommunication requirements and on top of that go the extra mile and surprise you with new possibilities for your business, speed to action your requests and keeping within your budget.

📞 Virtual Switchboard
🔌 SIP trunk
🔢 Virtual number
📠 Call Center Solutions

7.) 
NetSapiens

SNAPsolution
Our SNAPsolution – UC and Collaboration tools – can be quickly deployed so you can realize your ROI just as quick. netsapiens offers a comprehensive suite of unified communications (UC) & Contact Center (CC) feature-sets to service providers. Custom-built to provide our partners with unprecedented levels of flexibility, customization, and ease of use.

netsapiens allows you to control your margins in order to improve your ROI. As a provider of a facilities-based solution, you are able to personally choose your origination, termination, hardware costs, etc. to fit your budget. We also allow you to strategically price your product for a maximum return on your investment by charging on a conc...
(read more)

8.) 
Nuxiba Technologies

CenterWare
Build a strong business presence and improve customer relationships!

Offer custom-tailored solutions throughout your sales cycles and customer interactions and assess service levels and control corporate goal achievement through reports and statistics.

Obtain detailed reports based on relevant activity in your contact center, access our quality module to assess calls and performance, apply surveys, develop scripts, record conversations, and more!

Schedule a live demo or request a quote today!

9.) 
Televergence

Long Distance and Toll Free Specialists for Contact Centers
Televergence is a facilities based US Nationwide High volume/High Capacity Inbound and Outbound VoIP Carrier for Contact Centers. We specialize in termination (outbound) and origination (toll free and local DID) for the contact center. We have a technical staff that is up to date on the majority of platforms in use today, including asterisk and Vicci dial, as well as many of the currently in use software platforms.
Contact Centers generally see cost reduction and containment when using Televergence as their contact center telecom carrier. Televergence is the only active US VoIP carrier certified by the Women's Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC), which enables our services to qualify for meeting corporations Supplier Diversity Needs.

10.) 
The Phone Number Testing Company

Phone Number Testing and Validation
Bulk testing and validation of UK Landline and mobile numbers, with a growing list of other coutries where we can test.

If you own a large customer or business prospect sales database, our service helps you to quickly and accurately cleanse all the dead records, by identifying all the dead phone numbers.

We offer a free no obligation test trial
 

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