Still remember the little corner shop on your street? Although the shop owner only had a limited array of products, they knew every visitor by name and could tell what they wanted just by looking at them. The customer always knew they were in good hands and felt like their needs were catered for.
Do you also act according to the corner shop principle and rely on moments in which the customer feels empathy, builds trust and gets answers to their questions? Even to those questions they haven’t asked yet?
You should! After all, customers love small moments of happiness – moments which they will associate with the respective company for the foreseeable future.
Competitive Advantage Through Professional Customer Service
The reality, however, is often very different as many customers complain about a lack of individual support and sensitivity. This proves to be fatal for a brand, as negative experiences are often shared with others and never forgotten. Meanwhile, the competition takes the hearts of your customers by storm.
Professional customer service is one of the most important features to set you apart from your competitors. However, do you lack the necessary resources? Are you wondering how to create the necessary freedom in your company to develop in the long term and increase your profits?
The answer is simple: you should outsource your customer service. In this blog post we deal with the basics and success factors of customer service outsourcing.
The Basics of Outsourcing
What is outsourcing?
The term outsourcing is used when a company chooses to outsource certain fields of activity to external service providers. This way, a company is able to transfer the operation of individual tasks, combined sub-areas or entire departments to a third-party company.
What are the reasons for outsourcing?
Using outsourcing as an instrument of strategic management is no longer an exception, but the rule.
Outsourcing enables you to purchase expert knowledge externally in order to save costs, time and personnel capacities. If you want to offer your customers professional customer service, you not only need a trained support team to handle these tasks, but also high quality technical equipment, suitable premises and functioning software.
Just ask yourself whether the effort and costs involved equate to the benefits it brings for your company.
After all, no single employee has the capability of delivering the best possible results in all business processes. When you outsource, however, you can quickly achieve scalable results – especially as your business grows internationally.
Outsourcing gives you the flexibility to focus on your core business, stay competitive in your industry and gain entrepreneurial freedom.
The benefits of outsourcing at a glance:
- Cost saving
- Time saving
- Risk minimization
- Concentration on core business
- Increase in quality
What types of outsourcing are there?
There are four different types of outsourcing:
- With Business Process Outsourcing, complete business processes are outsourced, such as the processing of returns in e-commerce.
- Knowledge Process Outsourcing means the assignment of complex tasks for which a high degree of specialization is required to third parties. For example, this could involve writing SEO texts for your website.
- Out-tasking involves outsourcing individual tasks, such as data backups, to an external company. This way, the responsibility for the overarching business area remains within the company itself.
- Selective Outsourcing is a combination of business process outsourcing and out-tasking. It involves outsourcing special sub-areas that are more comprehensive than individual tasks, but not as complex as an entire process. An example of selective outsourcing would be payroll accounting.
Customer Service Outsourcing
For which industries is customer service outsourcing relevant?
If you want to build up a satisfied customer base, it is crucial that you provide professional customer service.
Your customers have questions to ask about your products, want to share helpful feedback or want to complain about or even return a product. In this phase, it is particularly important to be available round the clock, to take customers by the hand and to offer them a competent solution. If the service quality exceeds expectations, customers often become fans and even loyal brand ambassadors of your company.
Whether a manufacturer of consumer electronics, a supplier of medical technology or simply a website operator – every company that wants to gain and retain customers must rely on customer service. Those who meet the ever-growing demands of their customers today will find themselves among the market winners tomorrow.
What are typical success factors in customer service outsourcing?
With outsourcing, you are essentially giving up the management of your customer service. However, this does not mean that you should lack a sophisticated strategy. Only a well thought-out service strategy of your own will help boost the efficiency of your customer service.
This begins with an analysis of the current situation, whereby you must decide whether outsourcing makes financial sense for your company.
What role does customer support play in your company? Is it a potential source of revenue for cross-selling or upselling? Are you dealing with a small volume of complex issues or is the opposite the case? Are there any gaps in the process?
By conducting a comprehensive analysis of the situation, you can deduce not only the benefits of the project, but also the course of action, content, timing, goals and the potential the strategy has in store.
Choosing the right partner
There are many providers of customer service outsourcing. Be sure to take the time to find the right partner and carefully compare different offers and references.
You should come to clear arrangements during your communication, as this is the only way to avoid misunderstandings and achieve satisfying results together. In addition, your partner should both understand and share your corporate culture.
Make sure you document all tasks, deadlines and obligations in an outsourcing agreement. If you decide to work with a partner overseas, remember to take time differences, language barriers and potentially different working methods into account.
After you have worked out a concrete schedule with the appropriate outsourcing company, you are ready to hit the ground running. However, don’t forget to have ongoing quality assurance in place as this is the only way to ensure efficient cooperation that delivers truly satisfying results.
Outsourcing Creates a Sustainable Service Experience
As a result of digitalization, your customers’ communication behavior has changed radically. What’s more, expectations placed on customer service are on the up. The classic method of contacting customers by telephone and email has long since been a thing of the past. If your target group communicates in a modern way, it is paramount that you include messaging apps and social media in your customer interaction strategy.
An omni-channel solution that offers fast, personal and competent solutions is a prerequisite for high service quality. But not every company can afford this due to the high investments and considerable operating expenses involved. However, customer service outsourcing offers an attractive alternative to in-house operations, especially for growth companies in international markets. So, whether you opt to outsource your customer service or not, always maintain a high standard of quality to ensure you create a sustainable customer experience.
Still not found a suitable partner? B2X offers you proven customer service solutions with high levels of customer focus and support to provide efficient solutions to the problems experienced by your customers. Remember: the demands and expectations of your customers are continuing to grow. Get in touch!