By Nathan Teahon, Vice President
Telemarketing companies come in many shapes and sizes. I have written many times about how a call center is like a person, and each one has their own strengths and weaknesses. Evaluating those strengths and matching them with a client or program that needs those strengths is a crucial first step in having a successful inbound, outbound or omni-channel call center program.
But where does actual size fit into this equation? Is a bigger telemarketing company always better? Surely a call center with 500 seats is better than one with 75, right? The answer isn’t so black and white and in many circumstances that might not be the case. Below are the top factors to consider when evaluating if a telemarketing company is the right size for your client or program.
Telemarketing Company Selection: Small Fish in a Big Pond?
When looking at the size of a telemarketing company, it’s important to also evaluate the size of the inbound or outbound program that you are looking to place. Let’s say the size of your call center program is going to require five agents to start and has the potential to eventually be 10 ongoing. A call center with 500 seats is certainly going to have no issue taking on that effort, but the question to ask is whether or not that 10-person program is going to be meaningful to that center? Where is it going to rank in terms of priorities for the management staff and what chance does it have in getting access to the call center’s top-tier agents? Is that campaign going to be treated as a small fish in a big pond?
A 10-person program is potentially going to be much more meaningful for that 75-seat call center. At any given point and time, it could make up 13% of the total seats in that center vs. just 2% of the seats in the 500-seat center. It’s a much higher priority to management of that telemarketing company and as a result is more likely to get the attention it deserves.
Of course, this can work in the opposite way as well. A campaign that requires 50 seats most likely is not going to be a good fit in that 75-seat center as they are going to be overextended and will struggle keeping up with the quality demands of the program, which leads to the next point.
Telemarketing Company Selection: The Scalability Factor
While it is important that the size of the campaign is something that will be meaningful to the telemarketing company, it’s also important to recognize if the capacity of the center can keep up with the anticipated growth for a particular program. There is a balance that must be walked between ensuring that a program is meaningful and a priority for a center and growing a campaign to a point where the center just can’t keep up with the staffing requirements.
That being said, outgrowing a single call center location or team isn’t the worst thing in the world and doesn’t necessarily mean that you shouldn’t use that telemarketing company. At QCS, we have many call center locations and bringing a second call center up to ensure that you have the best possible agents on the program while also having some healthy competition can be a great thing. It’s just important to go into it eyes wide open knowing what options you have in front of you to ensure long term success.
Telemarketing Company Selection: Organizational Capacity
In addition to just the number of seats, the size of the call center can have many pros and cons. With a small call center, you need to evaluate if they have the technological wherewithal to meet the requirements of the program. Additionally, while a 10-seat program may be more meaningful it’s also important that they have the proper management bandwidth in place to properly support the program from a training, supervision and quality assurance perspective.
A larger call center, in theory, is more likely to not have those issues. However, some larger call center organizations have a lot of red tape in place that does not allow them to move nimbly, including making adjustments to ensure you reach your goals within a short timeframe. These are things to evaluate and aren’t true to every small or large center but are generalities that can often be true.
At the end of the day, size is just one piece of the puzzle, but it is a piece that needs to be evaluated. At QCS we have an owner-operator model which means that we partner with various small and medium call centers which are locally owned by the owner-operator. Each has their own strengths and weaknesses. However, generally we are proud that our owner-operators are typically big enough to exceed the demands of our programs but small enough to have a boutique feel ensuring that each QCS client program gets the time and attention it deserves.
Other Articles You Might Find Interesting:
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Telemarketing Management
How to Select a Third Party Call Center Services Company
5 Reasons Telemarketing Services Are Best in the U.S.
Successful Outsource Telemarketing Using Call Blending
Nathan Teahon is the Vice President at Quality Contact Solutions, a leading outsourced telemarketing services organization. As a highly competitive person, Nathan brings his ‘A’ game to work every day, ensuring that each of his clients wins on a daily basis. Nathan carefully balances the operations resources and client goals to ensure his clients receive the highest possible results at the lowest cost. Nathan is a true, born and bred telemarketer. He grew up in the business and intimately knows (and has played) every position on the field, including supervisor, quality assurance, call center manager, program management, account management, and call center psychologist. Nathan can be reached at Nathan.firstname.lastname@example.org or 516-656-5133.