Customer service outsourcing is a method that has been increasingly adopted by different companies in recent years. But where some succeed, others have failed. Why ? Simply because to reap the benefits of outsourcing, you need to do it the right way.

Good reasons to outsource customer service

It is true that in-house customer service offers certain advantages, such as autonomy, direct contact with customers, etc. However, with the evolution of the Internet, it has become necessary to outsource customer service. However, as the company and its customers evolve, it can quickly become difficult to manage customer service in-house. This situation, where customer requests go unanswered, represents a big risk for the company. And let's face it, setting up an in-house customer service department requires significant material, technical and human investment. Therefore, both large groups and very small companies often resort to outsourcing their customer service. This makes complete sense, since outsourcing is both a flexible and an economical solution. The choice of outsourcing customer service allows customers' expectations to be met in a more timely manner. External call centres are able to respond to several requests simultaneously. This can only be an advantage for the company, as response time is a key factor in customer satisfaction. Of course, the quality of service is also one of the strong points of outsourcing. In addition, it is well known that this solution is less expensive than setting up an in-house customer service department. But outsourcing also offers flexibility. This means, it is possible to adapt the offer according to the needs of the company at a specific moment. Experts can assist companies that are considering outsourcing their customer service, read more here.

Choosing the external service provider

It is important to note, first of all, that the outsourcing of customer service must be in line with the company's overall strategy. Thus, the choice of service provider must take into account the company's social issues and image. Therefore, before committing to a call centre, it is advisable to check that it is capable of offering its services while respecting the requirements of the company that hires it. Indeed, if the global strategy is not respected, it is the customer relationship that will pay the price, and this is certainly not the main goal of the company outsourcing the service. Afterwards, it is also necessary to look at the equipment used by the service provider. Although call centres are generally well equipped, they may use software that does not correspond to the needs of their clients. Nevertheless, there are some that offer companies to use the customer relationship management software recommended by them. Therefore, this is also one of the criteria to be taken into account when choosing a service provider. In any case, it may be more interesting to make the trip to be sure that the company and the provider share the same values. Some companies even go to the extent of asking other customers about the quality of the services provided by the call centre.

Ensuring the competence of the advisers

The quality of the customer service depends largely on the skills of the customer advisers. Moreover, the choice to outsource customer service is based on a desire to better respond to the many requests from customers. Of course, training is essential for the customer advisors of a service provider. In order to take better care of customers, it is necessary for advisors to immerse themselves in the company's culture and to understand the nature of the service provided by the company. A specialist in customer service management is best suited to ensure a higher level of customer satisfaction. In addition, they usually have the right resources and technology to manage a customer service department.

That said, service providers usually have agents who specialise in specific areas, so they can have an operational team to provide the best service quality. However, it is still important to have training materials in place to ensure that the service is perfect. The advice is that the company should have a representative at the outsourcer. His or her role will be to monitor and adjust the training.

Keeping control of customer service

Whether it is Sales Outsourcing or Customer Service Outsourcing, it is totally unacceptable to lose sight of data and different indicators. For example, it is necessary to have access to customer data and all the information that customers provide to customer service. This helps to improve the service and to show that requests have been taken into account by the company. To do this, agree in advance with service providers on the use of a CRM that allows for the efficient exchange of data. Finally, concerning the quality of the service provided by the customer advisors, the company is also entitled to know the performance of its customer service. The service provider can therefore give a company manager direct access to the customer relationship management software. In this way, the manager can assess the quality of the service himself and adopt alternative solutions if improvements are needed. In some cases, the service provider offers regular reporting to the company.