Have you just outsourced call center services and have been worried about managing an outsourced customer support team? How do you make the most of outsourcing and make your outsourcing venture a sure success? Here are 5 great tips that you can use to effectively manage an offshore call center team and double your ROI at the same time:
1. Set out clear objectives
Be firm and specific while spelling out your customer support objectives and tell the vendor what you mean to accomplish by outsourcing. Set up a meeting with your internal team and chart out a plan defining your criteria for success, the systems required to measure the performance and how such metrics should be applied to optimize seamless call center operations. Insist on the vendor providing you with better customer care and social media engagement.
2. Search for the right operations manager
Ensure that the operations manager you hire has great organizational and time management skills. He/she must also possess a minimum amount of experience to efficiently handle call center operations. Here is why these skill sets are of utmost importance:
- Organizational skills: Your manager has to be completely focussed, highly organized and an efficient multi-tasker as he/she will need to manage a long list of tasks, such as staffing the account, managing a team of agents, solving technology issues, working with the client, addressing the workflow and monitoring customer cases.
- Experience: Experience is important as the manager should set the tone for the team and lead them. He/she must be conscious of the big picture view of program operations and should be able to accurately assess and improve the team’s performance. Such attributes can only be gained through experience.
- Time management skills: In the customer support world, every second matters. Calls are measured in seconds and operators are paid by the hour. The manager whom you hire must ensure that all the agents confirm to the schedule, prioritize tasks, work productively and focus on accomplishing measurable goals.
3. Build up an effective team
In order for your customer support team to run efficiently, you will need brand care specialists who can align your program with your brand. Ensure that there is perfect alignment between the supervisors, representatives, senior management, operations manager and the stakeholders.
Form a team with a core of experienced customer support agents who know about call centres, the culture and who can help in mentoring new agents. Only hire agents with the right skill sets and attitude. Finally provide intensive training to your team that will enable them to impart product/service knowledge in a quick and efficient manner. If possible also include subject matter experts in your team, as they can guide the team in up-selling and cross-selling products.
4. Bring in the right infrastructure
A robust and seamless system configuration is very critical in call center operations. Analyze your call types, service levels, call volumes and strategic goals and then check if the vendor’s infrastructure can support your needs. Next, build a workflow that will support your operations. If your enterprise is large, then you will have to bring in systems for CRM, telephony, email, chat and case management. Also ensure that the technology enables you to evaluate performance and collate business intelligence. With the right kind of infrastructure, your offshore team can easily manage the entire system seamlessly.
5. Plan for the future
Since stakeholders pay a critical role in the success of your business, it is important that you communicate your goals and keep them continually in the loop. Make plans for ongoing training and stress on the importance of training agents on a regular basis. Look into your data and find out more about your call volumes and peak calling time. With such forecasts, you can staff call center agents accordingly.
Want to know more about outsourcing call center services to India? Read more about Outsource2india’s call center services.
Have you outsourced call center operations in the past? Did you follow any of the above tips? Is there any other tip that you can add to the list? Let us know by leaving a comment in the box below.
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