By A.J. Windle, Director of Client Engagement
It can be very overwhelming to find third-party call center services companies (also known as telemarketing companies, contact centers, and BPOs) However, if you approach the process like buying a new car, you’ll find that getting from the research stage to a successful launch will be easier if you know what you’re looking for from the beginning.
Let’s use the “buying a new car” analogy; there are hundreds of makes and models. Each will get you from point A to point B, but not every car will have met your specific requirements if you look closely and carefully evaluate the options. Both large and small variables will make the difference as you select the right car for yourself.
No different from third-party call center services companies.
Here are some of the most critical components you should look at when evaluating potential contact center partners.
Like cars, not all third-party call center services partners are created equal. You’re not going to buy a Ferrari to haul building materials, so why would you hire an inbound technical support team to handle your inbound sales calls?
During the evaluation process for third-party call center services companies to assist with your inbound needs, you must know what they are good at.
Do inbound or outbound projects make up most of their work? What will you need?
For example, do they focus on inbound support, are there sales involved, and has their primary business been chat or technical support?
You want to work with a partner with experience in what you are looking to accomplish.
Inexperienced contact centers may be hungry for your business, but the success of your project will likely suffer through a learning curve with the staff.
Just like skill-set, having the right technology for both inbound telemarketing and outbound call programs is crucial. Therefore, it is imperative to understand their current technology and what can be implemented in the future to improve the program efficiencies and the customer experience.
A few “must-have technology options” on my list are:
- Robust IVR and ability for multiple queues. This is a must. Having the ability to build a robust IVR tree will allow you more flexibility in the future to further service your customers with more specificity.
If your program requires a more 360-degree customer support option, you will want to make these options available to your customers through your one-stop IVR system.
For instance, you may need a sales team that doesn’t deal with technical issues. You then have a technical support team that doesn’t sell or doesn’t answer general customer service questions.
Because many teams have experts for different customer issues, it is essential to ensure you can provide an easy method for your customers to access those experts.
- Skill-based routing. This allows you to prioritize specific calls to specific agents. It is essential as there will always be leaders of the pack who emerge, and you will want to make sure you are utilizing those leaders as effectively as possible.
- Real-time Reporting. This may seem like a no-brainer; however, there are quite a few third-party call center solutions out there that do not have the ability for the supervisors managing the program to see real-time stats of the front-line troops. Click here to check out a sample of our reports.
Metrics like Average Speed of Answer, Average Speed to Abandon, Agent Utilization, and calls in queue are the foundation of inbound programs.
You’ve identified a great company with the skill-set and the technology you need to perform successfully in your program. Next, consider if the company can scale to meet your growth goals.
Outstanding success can create the need for growth, and you must be contracting with a company that can scale with your organization as you grow.
Does the chosen third-party call center services company have more locations for expansion? Do they have an option on their existing location’s lease to add more seats? Is the labor pool large enough to recruit enough staff? Is remote work a possibility?
Selecting the correct third-party call center service to provide inbound and outbound support can be difficult, but we are here to help.
If you are a company looking for a telemarketing partner that will help you reach your goals, call us at 1-866-963-2889 and press 1 for sales. Or email me at email@example.com.
A.J. Windle is the Director of Client Engagement at Quality Contact Solutions. A.J. is responsible for ensuring every client program is successful daily, including achieving the Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) that matter most. With a deep call center operations background, A.J. is a hands-on leader who has built his career on creating win-win-win relationships for his team, clients, and the owner-operated call centers he is responsible for. A.J. loves to keep score, and he is proud of his team’s scoreboard. A. J. knows that great leaders find a way to make sure their team wins. You can reach A.J. at firstname.lastname@example.org or 516-656-5106