Hundred and sixty thousand. That is the number of call centers (call centers) that exist around the world. So how do you find the best call center for your business? It is not as difficult as you imagine, as long as you understand your needs. By knowing what to look for, you can find a provider that meets your needs and enables you to improve efficiency and customer satisfaction, all while reducing costs.
These are the main factors to consider when starting your search:
Where do you do business? Will the call center handle calls only from the United States? Chili? From a few countries? Of all the world? This is something to keep in mind, as choosing a call center provider that specializes in English won’t do you any good if you have a lot of Spanish-speaking clients.
The size of your company has a direct impact on the size of the call center that you should consider. Choosing too small a supplier can affect and drag your business, while choosing too large a supplier can result in unnecessary costs and a lack of personalized attention. Make sure the size of the call center fits the size of your business.
Does your company have plans to grow, or do you expect your products to take off? If so, it is not enough to match the size of the provider with the size of your company. Make sure the provider you select can accommodate your expected growth and grow with you.
If your company produces specialized supply chain management (SCM) software, but a vendor’s call centers have expertise in computer architecture software for university researchers, they are probably not the best option. It would take a long time to get the proper training done. On the other hand, if you are looking to change providers because the current one is not complying, it could be a good instance to hire a consultant from outside the industry to identify problems and optimize performance.
How comprehensive is the provider training program? How efficient are they? Maybe you can attend and observe a training session. Well-trained employees are essential to the performance of a call center, and without a solid training program, they may not be able to adapt to your business.
Technology and Capital
Does the provider already have the necessary technology to partner with your company? If so, that is an advantage, but it is not a deal breaker. A provider that has the capital and the willingness to invest in your technology, as well as other new technologies that may emerge, can also be a strong partner.
Obviously, you will want to select the provider with the highest performance at the lowest price. However, make sure everything is perfectly clear when estimating costs. Make sure you get all your cost estimates from competing providers for easy comparisons, and call for more information if there is an outlier (if one bid is much lower or much higher than the others). Make sure to note the differences in taxes and currency (exchange rate) if you are negotiating with a multinational provider.
“Pricing in the call center business can be a maze of confusion, methods, models and tricks, so be careful,” said Tom Christenson, president of Contact Center Services at CGS. “Your best option is to make sure that all the suppliers you are comparing have the same data and give similar answers as to how they are trading. Make sure that the assumptions used to develop those prices are consistent and standard for all possible suppliers” .
Has the supplier had a history of great performance and improved results? If a provider has call centers that are consistently performing and capable of adapting to high pressure situations when something goes wrong, you know they are a quality provider. Effective customer service eliminates the unnecessary steps involved in solving customer problems. The call center provider must be able to demonstrate how effective and efficient its agents are. Agents must deliver a satisfying customer experience. Your current clients will give you the most precise guidelines for a satisfactory service. From there, you can make an informed decision about a provider.
Security and the Cloud
There are many reasons why you might want to consider a call center provider that works in the cloud. Installation in the cloud is much faster and cheaper than local installation, through people. With today’s technology, call center providers