Customer service outsourcing: The benefits
In this blog on Outsourcing Customer Service: The Benefits, we discuss the benefits of outsourcing customer service. Outsource customer service: The benefits, read them here!
Outsourcing work or certain (parts of) business processes has a number of advantages. In this blog we describe some of those advantages, more specifically the advantages of (partially or not) outsource customer service.
The importance of good customer service?
First, perhaps not redundant to the importance of good customer service re-emphasize. Customer service is an essential part of the customer experience. Whether it is after-sales, presales consulting, complaint handling or technical support makes little to no difference in that. Let's face it, are you a long-time customer with an organization where customer service is not up to par? Where you have to wait a long time for a response? Where you can't contact them through the channel you prefer at your convenience? Of course quality, price and convenience play a role. Especially in "becoming a customer" then. Deciding whether or not to purchase. However, if you open any review site and read through it, you will still notice that many positive but even more negative reviews are about service.
So what are the benefits of outsourcing a process with such an impact on the customer experience? We've listed 5.
1. Specialization and focus
A company like us does nothing but handle customer contacts and help organizations optimize customer service. The moment you, as a company, have set up, taken care of and improved customer service for all kinds of different companies, in all kinds of different ways then you get better and better at it. Every customer service is totally different of course. That's what makes it fun. In general, you can say that companies that have been handling customer contacts for all kinds of different clients for a long time should be pretty good at it. That's different than for a webshop, for example. A webshop is (if all goes well) very good at selling products over the Internet. Customer service is not their core business. It is part of it, just like purchasing, online marketing, HR, facility etc. etc., but a web shop is not specialized in it. Outsourcing customer service has the advantage that you hire someone for whom that is not the case. customer service and the professional handling of customer contacts is indeed the core business.
2. Economies of scale
Scale advantage is the cost,- and quality advantage realized by operating on a larger scale. In customer service, most of the costs are in personnel and ICT/systems. Especially in start-up and growing organizations, we see that initial investments and running costs of a customer service organization are fairly out of line with revenues. Using a company that can spread these costs over many other customers ensures that they are much lower. Economies of scale can be found in start-up costs of systems, recruiting staff, absorbing absenteeism, etc. For lower volumes, a company such as ours can often create a blended solution whereby a very good and comprehensive customer service can be provided even for lower volumes.
Outsource your customer service?
3. Price vs. features vs. quality
This ties in a bit with the economies of scale above. The moment you can concentrate on 1 thing you are good at, it generally goes better, faster and easier than when it is something you do "on the side". Handling customer contacts effectively, efficiently and professionally is a profession. The rule is: The more you do it, the better you become at it. Providing your own customer service is, of course, great. Nevertheless, our customers see the added value of outsourcing mainly in bringing in expertise in the field of customer service support. Apart from getting the basics right (good accessibility at the times and channels the customer wants), working with a professional partner adds a stable basis for growth. If all goes well, an external partner already has most channels up and running and has a basic staff already in place. You get that experience, knowledge and expertise for free.
A good partner offers a degree of flexibility that is often difficult to achieve internally. Whether blended or dedicated support a well-organized external partner (Spangenberg Group for example 😊) is often very flexible when it comes to opening hours, channels, systems, staffing and the content of the work. In part, of course, this also brings economies of scale where capacity can be shifted more easily between projects. Peaks or troughs in the number of contact moments are easier to absorb.
5. Mopping up with the tap.
Many of our customers are mopping the faucet. That is, they work very hard at handling lots of customer contacts (mopping up) without addressing the cause (open tap). With a base that is in order, a good external partner (Spangenberg Group example 😊) help you close that tap. By looking at the content of customer contacts through the lenses of 20 years of experience, we can help eliminate the causes that produce avoidable customer contact. Avoidable customer contact, then, is that portion of customer contact that results from a business process that is not aligned with the customer experience. An example is a supplier of ours where we do not receive an invoice for an order. So we always have to request these. Adjust those processes all the time based on input from customer contact specialists and then you slowly turn off that tap. Then suddenly mopping up becomes a lot easier, more efficient and more fun. In the example mentioned: Just send the invoice right away and make sure it is correct. Very simple it seems to me but if you don't actively look for those kinds of simple improvements then you're not going to find them either.
The core benefits?
The core benefits is that by hiring someone who is very good at what they do you get more than it costs you. Those revenues and direct but also indirect costs are difficult to quantify. Of course, the benefits also depend a lot on the situation. Hopefully you liked our blog about Customer service outsourcing: The benefits interesting!
The outsource customer service has for our customers in a number of reasons had:
1. Multilingualism: Client cannot provide appropriate multilingual staffing itself
2. Flexibility: Client does not have the ability to flexibly schedule itself and deploy additional capacity around busy times.
3. Expertise: Client does not have the knowledge to set up their own customer service department and run it effectively, efficiently and professionally.
4. Opening hours: Client closes at 5 p.m. but wants to be available until 9 p.m. and on weekends.
5. Growth: Client, due to rapid (international) growth, does not have the ability to keep up with that growth in customer contacts and wants to focus on that growth.
As mentioned, each specific situation has its own advantages. We are, of course, happy to look with you to see where in your situation, if any, the advantages would be. Hopefully our blog on Customer Service Outsourcing: The Benefits? gave you an idea of the added value.
We can help you make sure your customer service is good customer service. Just good customer service where the basics are in order. Where customer contacts add value to the customer experience. We relieve you in the area we are good at (customer service) so you can concentrate worry-free on what you do best. Sound good? Get in touch. You can use the form below.
Customer service outsourcing: The benefits, probably for you too.
We'd love to see if outsourcing your customer service can provide those same benefits!