Customers have many options today to reach businesses via telephone, social media, and live chats. There is a greater demand for customer services.
Customers have higher expectations, with 95% 1 believing that excellent customer service is essential in their decision to choose a brand and their loyalty.
A call center or contact center is one way to respond to this growing customer demand. Your call center can be run in-house or outsourced to a third party. Each approach has its pros and cons. It can be difficult to choose the right one for your business.
Understand both these approaches before you can make a decision. This is what this blog will be discussing.
Before we get into the details of outsourcing and in-house, let's first look at why businesses need high-quality customer services.
Customer service is becoming more important
It is not enough for businesses in 2022 to offer quality products and services at affordable prices. While this is important, customers expect top-quality customer service.
Customer service is a key component of building customer relationships. It can also improve efficiency and profitability over the long term. There are many other benefits as well, such as:
- Customer loyalty can be a great asset to any business. 91% 2 customers believe that a good customer service experience increases their likelihood of purchasing in the future. High-quality customer service can help you build long-lasting relationships with customers.
- Gaining a competitive edge: Offering high-quality customer services is a great way to distinguish your business from other businesses in highly competitive markets. This can help you gain a competitive advantage and make your brand stand out in a highly competitive marketplace.
- Increase profits: Customer service is a great way to make your business more profitable. When customers are treated with better care, businesses can grow their revenues by up to 8% 3 more than their market.
The in-house approach
A call center team that is dedicated to answering customer calls every day is one way of providing customer support. This model allows all team members to be your employees. You will also be responsible to service the equipment and other overheads.
Benefits of staying in-house
Although it may seem expensive to provide customer support in-house, there are many benefits. These benefits include:
- Improved brand awareness: Your in-house call center agents have a greater knowledge of your brand and products. They are also more familiar with business processes and changes that occur.
- More control: The call center manager can complete control, enforce quality control, and set on-call handling procedures. A call center manager can assign different calls to agents based on their strengths.
- Policy changes can be implemented quickly by In-house call centers that can communicate policy changes faster than third-party agents. Third-party agents might be slower, which could delay the implementation of crucial changes.
Staying in-house costs more
A call center can be an excellent way to provide exceptional customer service. It is important to keep in mind that this method can be time-consuming and costly.
- Recruitment: Hiring agents and support staff to your in-house phone centers can be costly and time-consuming. You might be limited by the costs of advertising, interviewing, filling, and closing positions.
- Training: Call center agents need to be properly trained to provide excellent customer service. This takes time and money. If you have high turnover, training costs can spiral out of control.
- Infrastructure: To set up an in-house phone center, you'll need computers and PBX systems. These tools can be costly. The in-house restructuring may also be necessary.
Overheads Creating an in-house phone center is not the end. To avoid any disruptions, you'll need regular maintenance of the technology. It is important to make sure that your infrastructure is strong and that staff is available to handle sickness and holidays. These can all add up to a significant cost.
The outsourcing method
Outsourcing refers to a third-party engagement in which a company outsources its call center requirements to an outside organization. It's when you outsource the call center work to another entity rather than creating an internal department.
The cost-effectiveness of customer services outsourcing is one of the main reasons to consider it. You should be aware that there are many approaches to customer service outsourcing.
Offshore outsourcing versus onshore
Outsourcing offshore is often driven by the desire for cheap labor in different time zones. This can lead to lower service quality and cost savings, but it doesn't mean that you have to compromise on quality.
Onshore outsourcing is another option. This is for customers who want more flexibility and better customer service. Outsourcing to a provider that will match your customers with agents who are familiar with their language and background can lead to better outcomes.
The distributed model
Agents can work remotely according to their schedules using distributed models. This model is ideal for retaining and recruiting the best UK-based agents, as many workers today find remote work attractive. The distributed model of outsourcing also has other benefits:
- Experienced agents: A distributed center will have a talent base of customer service professionals. Agents are skilled in customer service and will be able to understand your expectations and business objectives, which will allow them to speak with confidence as your brand's voice.
- More educated agents: Distributed agents are typically older and have higher education levels. This gives them the ability to provide exceptional service. This means you get better results, which is more valuable than an offshore call center service.
- Lower infrastructure cost: Distributed models may reduce the cost of high-quality offshore outsourcing. This model is more flexible than traditional models and does not require office space or supporting infrastructure.
- Enhanced Scalability: Businesses can scale up customer service when there is an increase in volume. Managers can schedule agents during peak call volumes to ensure exceptional customer service.
- Greater flexibility: Scheduling agents who work remotely is more flexible than traditional models—schedule workers for shorter blocks of time around peak call volume. Scheduling in shorter blocks allows you to only pay for the hours worked. This also allows for adequate coverage during peak hours.
Quality at a fair price
Remote working is increasingly popular due to its many benefits and widespread acceptance. Distributed customer service models are becoming more popular. Finding a provider that provides top-quality customer service representatives is key to customer satisfaction.
LHI is here to help. Our outsourced, distributed customer services model offers a wide range of benefits and doesn't charge excessive hourly rates. Our model allows you to only pay for what you use and can be scaled up or down quickly as needed.