Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Benifits of Call Center Outsourcing

An outsourced call center or customer support center is a company who is on hand to answer or make telephone calls on your behalf. Your customer support center could be based in the UK or overseas, however language barriers, among other problems have made overseas contact centers less appealing for British businesses.

The customer support contact center would manage your telephone calls and follow a pre-arranged script to meet your needs, whether that be providing your customers with information or generating new leads.

1. Gain an edge over your competitors
If your competitors operate a strictly 9am-5pm company, you could open longer through a telephone based team and capture an additional group of people who need your product before 9am or after 5pm. Sophisticated contact centers are employing and training their staff to the highest standard of call center outsourcing. You can provide your customers with excellent support and gain an advantage over your competitors by using an experienced outsourced contact center.

2. Reliability
When using an experienced contact center you can expect a reliable service provided by trained and customer focused staff. This reliability guarantees your customers are well looked after and your company does not miss any opportunities to maximize revenue.
In the event your phone lines are not working, your employees are off work sick or you have an influx of telephone calls, you can rely on an experienced contact center to support your business.

3. Save money
Your business can save money by taking a low risk option an employing an outsourced contact center. The cost of equipment to operate a contact center can be expensive and means your business is fully committed to the strategy. An outsourced contact center can minimize the risk and ensure you don't have to spend expensive amounts of money to setup your own in-house contact center.

Call Center Customer Satisfaction: Know the Facts

Most of the call centers think they get the point of customer satisfaction programs. Satisfied customers are more likely to stay with the company beyond their contract, use more services, and recommend those services to their friends. However, call centers often fall into the trap of "unprofitable" customer satisfaction, which can result in higher churn and lower margins, costing both the company and shareholders money and negatively impacting the bottom line.

Companies with large call centers can often tell which types of customers are going to leave for a competitor, but how can they stop them and solidify their loyalty? How can those in charge of call center operations sift through reams of customer satisfaction data and charts and turn that into an actionable plan that will generate increased profitability?

Years of practical experience working with call centers in many industries and insight gleaned from academic research on Call Center customer satisfaction have contributed to the principles set forth in this article. Debunking customer satisfaction myths and misunderstandings is more than just a theoretical exercise. Understanding these simple tradeoffs can have a direct impact on the bottom line by increasing both revenues and profitability. Will falling prey to these myths cost your organization and shareholders money?

Customer satisfaction should be maximized and customer expectations should be exceeded.

Call centers need to optimize customer satisfaction, not maximize it. Customer expectations should be met -- not exceeded. It is commendable if a call center exceeds its customers' expectations, but too often, companies try to do so at a great cost to profitability without even realizing it.

For many companies, the most frequent point of interaction between the company and the customer is through the call center. Call centers can be both a point of frustration for the customer and point of opportunity for the company, but the key to a profitable call center is finding the sweet spot where expectations and delivery converge. Minimizing call wait time may require expensive investment in new facilities and additional staff, and exceeding customers' expectations can add significant costs to call center operations.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

BPO is now a management strategy

Offshore outsourcing has evolved much over the years. And companies now expect much more than cost cutting from their outsourcing deals. Value added service has become the norm and this indeed is one major reason for more and more companies opting for outsourcing these days. So much that, outsourcing has gained strength as a management strategy for sustaining global growth as well competitive advantage to overcome the challenges of ever growing business complexities.

So, whether it's a Fortune 100 transnational or even a small enterprise, everyone is looking at outsourcing as a key growth engine thanks to the increased levels of process specialization and sophistication. Domain specialization and not just economies of scale is key to the success of any outsourcing relationship. Outsourcing has been recognized to save companies and not just costs.

Evolving Outsourcing Relationships
Organisations now regard outsourcing as a key initiative for overall growth and not just as mere cost saving exercise. Hence organizations are increasingly seeking best-in-class outsourcing specialists and not just large best of breed outsourcing service providers. This is especially true in the IT & engineering verticals as organizations even outsource new product development tasks to specialized offshore vendors. Research intensive, customer focused outsourcing relationships now has to include the following to remain competitive:

* Innovation Update. Quarterly, bi-annual, or annual innovation reviews (also known as innovation boards) focus typically on state of the market, industry trends and relevant information, technology updates, solution demonstrations, site visits, etc. Leverage other industry peer groups to understand what is happening in your industry, the outsourcing industry, and other sectors.

* Benchmarking. Clients should always activate their benchmarking clauses and focus on best practice as comparators of innovation---not just cost comparisons. Benchmark both functional excellence and outsourced environments.

* Stakeholder Satisfaction Surveys. Perform monthly, quarterly, and annual customer satisfaction surveys. They should be "360 degrees"---covering multiple dimensions and all internal and external stakeholders.

* Deliver on Partnering Promise. Hold regular collaborative planning sessions. Where people are briefed on the strategic and business objectives. Service providers need to come up with implantable strategies on how best they can meet their clients' business challenges. This makes the outsourcing vendors to think and act above simple tactical delivery.

* Value sharing framework. A transparent value-from-outsourcing sharing mechanism on a case-by-case basis should be harnessed to pay for business services delivered. Inclusion of regular mutual rewards for both your organization and that of the service provider boosts people motivation at all levels.

* Service Excellence. All SLAs must be tied to process excellence or customer delight will not happen. Project milestones, "go-live" events, and pilots are tangible means of tracking process maturity & excellence. Other measures include customer satisfaction, productivity, Six Sigma (defects), work elimination, etc.

* Outsourcing Management. The internal governance team should have a transformation or innovation owner, sufficient staff & budget to help drive innovation and must hold the provider accountable for innovation. Reassure and demonstrate to the provider that the relationship is long-term; otherwise they will be inclined to disinvest in innovation and the relationship. Your organization must retain process management expertise at a level at which you can clearly articulate future state requirements, evaluate proposals brought forward by the service provider, and work with your organization to get the business case for change.

* Executive Visibility / Support. Senior executives from the service provider side must have high visibility and access. This includes steering committees, reciprocal headquarter visits, joint speaking engagements, regularly scheduled calls, quarterly and annual briefings.

* Behaviour/Communication/Culture. Be prepared to invest in and encourage business process transformations that are aligned to business goals - rather early in any outsourcing relationship. Transformation requires a partnership mindset, not a transactional orientation. Innovation is often not brought to bear because clients do not ask for it, define what they mean by it, and motivate the provider to deliver it, or put restrictions around it. Clients rarely help the provider to understand what is important to them.


Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Why Companies Choose Call Center OffShoring

Outsourcing is certainly not a new concept in the global business world. In the past decade, the business world has experienced a great boom in outsourcing to the offshore destinations. Now the reasons that have led to the popularity of the offshore customer service centers are pointed out in detail in the article.

The offshore call center companies help business organizations to carry forward diverse business processes starting from telemarketing, technical support, telemarketing to customer service. Most businesses operating in the current market have already found out that there are several advantages to offshore call center outsourcing.

One such major benefit that business organization can enjoy is incredible cost savings. Companies those choose to outsource some essential business processes usually gain the lower overhead expenses. For this reason, companies do not have to invest in the new resources as the call center already includes the right technology and infrastructure.

A call center is normally paid in a fixed rate. The rate is generally calculated per agent, involved in carrying out your business project. So businesses choosing to outsource customer care services have to shoulder the labor costs only. Apart from labor costs, businesses do not have to think about the other costs like the recruitment costs.

In addition, companies will not have to worry about the employee benefits. As agents do not work on direct payroll of the business organization, businesses will be able to avoid paying the employees.

Companies that choose offshore outsourcing services enjoy about 60 percent cost savings because of the lower labor costs available in the offshore destinations like Latin America and Asia. Besides cost savings, there are few other advantages to outsourcing. Few of them are discussed in the next few lines.

Offshore centers normally involves 24/7 operations. These customer service centers also include multilingual capabilities. For businesses, this actually means gaining the ability to function round the clock. This kind of service is especially important for those businesses that work in different time zones. Moreover, businesses that have to ensure the 24/7 customer service have to ensure outsource customer support.

Offshore customer service centers emerge to be the essential way to support customers whenever they need any kind of assistance. The 24/7 support helps to resolve customer queries and problems. This in turn helps business organizations to function effectively ensuring improved customer satisfaction and retention.

The available multilingual features also help business organizations to avoid language barrier of any type and to carry out business functions effectively. This is another potential advantage of availing offshore services.

Next in line comes another important benefit of off-shoring customer services. In this regard, the offshore call center firms allow scaling down and ramping up of diverse business operations. Depending on the requirements of the individual clients, an offshore call center will hire and train agents and carry forward the staff distribution process. For example, the customer service center can add manpower as quickly as possible. Their services ensure specialized customer service support operations during the peak periods.

Looking at the above benefits, you can be sure why most businesses try to choose offshore call centers for carrying forward the non-core processes.

Call center answering services add to the efficiency of the business services. It ensures 24-hour customer support for businesses opting for such services. To find more about BPO Services and call center services click on http://www.callcenterindia.net