Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Outsourcing Contact Centres – A Path to Reduced Costs?

Outsourcing has always been presented as an excellent way for companies to save money and reduce their overheads. With the current economic situation now is the time to make the most of outsourcing contact centres, eventually granting more freedom for a company to manoeuvre. But whilst using the correct outsourcer will help to save money, precisely how will outsourced contact centres reduce overall spend?

This is fairly self-explanatory but essentially, if a company reduces the amount of work it must do for its customer contact operation, requires less hardware and infrastructure and reduces the number of staff devoted to the task, they will save money. Outsourcing practically eliminates the low-value work and tasks that add up in terms of hours and cost. Fundamentally, the Service Level Agreement and metrics provided by an outsourcer offer return on investment without draining company resources indirectly.

Similarly, whilst the workload is reduced, the amount of spending needed to achieve the same or better results is also reduced. This increased efficiency per pound spent is a result of the professional set up of the outsourcer and the fact that their contact centres are filled with highly trained, dedicated customer service professionals that are highly capable and deliver predefined results.

Fundamentally, by combining these two features of outsourcing it is possible to reduce costs. These costs can be reduced by downsizing the number of people dedicated to customer service within a business; by removing the need to employ so many contact workers. In addition, the reduction in infrastructure and IT spend also reduces the investment needed in comparison to an in-house solution.

With the right outsourcing provider considerable savings can be made when it comes to running and maintaining contact centres. Vitally however, it should be recognised that reducing costs should not mean sacrificing standards, ideally an outsourcer should be able to provide services that are equal or better than what would be possible in house, at a price that is also cost effective.