Customer service has always been supreme for all companies and so it is for call centres. Small and even big firms outsource their customer support to an outsourced call centre firm, as they want an experienced partner to take care of the business responsibilities.
Call centre outsourcing is not new and companies have always been outsourcing their secondary business functions to an external partner so that experts handle the same keeping a check on customer satisfaction.
With the change in time, call centres faced several issues handling services efficiently with agent attrition increasing dramatically. Several companies took campaigns and research to understand the cause of high attrition and the reason behind was the monotonous work environment and tedious repetitive tasks that become hard to handle.
Well, while dealing with all these concerns, call centres never paid emphasis on remote working and making cloud-based solutions obligatory. Nobody ever wondered that someday it would become necessary and a basic need for the agents to learn to operate from home.
The recent COVID pandemic taught a lot to the business industry. Call centres were the most adversely affected industry in this crisis as the business was unable to perform regular functions in lockdown.
If we compare the same with the IT industry, their companies easily operated from home around the lockdown time and managed to survive the crisis with swift business-employee interaction. Such a situation highlighted the need for call centres to learn remote working and promote hiring remote call centre agents.
Source - https://www.business2community.com/
At times of crisis, companies will have to operate remotely and since BPOs work for clients, it is of utmost importance for them to be up-to-date and keep their functions operating 24X7.
Rising agent attrition and lack of ability to support clients at times of crisis can land call centre outsourcing firms into trouble. This is the reason outsourcing call centre firms need to check attrition causes and work on bringing efficiency in performing remote functions.
How can an outsourced call centre firm do so?
Well, remote working is the new thing in the market and many companies are turning up to the same, as it not only saves cost but enhances results too.
Most call centre companies still not accept remote working and feel it degrades the employees’ performance. However, it is not true and to justify the same, we team up the reasons that highlight the significance of remote working for call centres:
1. Remote working is cost-effective
Managing the business functions in-house requires hiring, training agents repeatedly, and keeping a check on attrition issues too. This is the reason companies choose outsourcing to call centre firms so that a team of experts handles the responsibility.
However, it is the responsibility of BPO Company to maintain employee standards too and also to have agents present 24X7 at support to help the clients. In case of a crisis, when the agents will not be available, what will the call centre firm do?
Well, this is the reason remote working is significant as it saves the call centre’s cost on infrastructure, maintenance, employee re-hiring and much more. Since cloud-based call centres and easily assist agents with remote functions, thus, it is better to save costs and choose remote operations to reach the customer whenever needed.
2. Attract experienced agents
Call centre companies always question the need to make remote functions accessible for employees. Well, to earn reliable partners and to avoid attrition, BPOs need to make their services flexible. When call centre companies start allowing flexible work systems, avoiding the monotonous work culture, reliable agents will join the company and will become loyal partners.
Call centres need to understand that repetitive hiring and training is not good for business health in the end. Even customers do not like being answered by a new agent every next time, thus companies need to focus upon retaining employees.
The happier the employees, the easier it is to attract loyal customers. After all, skilled agents will only accept to be a part of your team when they find your services flexible for them. Thus, remote functions have to be obligatory.
3. No cost on equipment
When a call centre company manages its work remotely, it will automatically save costs on equipment. The companies that think cloud-based solutions will not bring adequate results and agents’ physical presence at the office can help companies earn well are wrong.
Operating functions remotely, the call centre easily saves cost on equipment. Since agents take care of answering responsibilities from home, they tend to use their personal computers and headsets, thus the companies’ cost on the same is reduced.
Since at times of a pandemic, it is hard to carry out the regular business functions and to maintain customer satisfaction the same way as before, thus remote functions can help your company survive. Since call centres carry out call answering services 24X7, thus they tend to avoid remote functions for security reasons. Nevertheless, outsourced call centre firms can easily carry out 24X7 services remotely in times of crisis with cloud-based call centres and there is no security threat too.
Moving forward, if we talk about call centre hosting easing remote agents’ tasks, we team up the way it does so:
- Access to an efficient cloud-based dialler.
- Toll-free numbers.
- Easier voice broadcasting.
- 24X7 support.
- Data security.
When a call centre firm gets a host to look after the business services, it never loses security. Data transfers are managed through the ASA firewall and Anti-DDoS protection, which is why companies need not worry about data security with remote practices.
In the end, it is all about business efficiency and making sure that no pandemic affects the business positivity, thus call centre hosting can be considered. Every company planning to shift to remote function or even thinking to shift to the same in times of a pandemic should use the cloud, as it saves expenses, keeps a check on security standards, and builds a positive brand name for the company.
Moving forward, as the need for the remote call centre is increasing post the COVID pandemic, the need for remote call centre agents are increasing too.
Several companies today wish to hire remote agents than in-house hiring and why such an idea can be great for your company is discussed below:
Remote agents are cost-effective.
Call centre companies have to help the remote agents with specialized equipment and software for easy service performance.
You only have to pay the agents for the work they do and not on a monthly fixed basis that helps to save during off-seasons.
Some security issues may arise. (However, keeping a check regularly and using cloud-based solutions can help.)
When it comes to choice amid labour force, you have better and more choices.
It is hard to monitor remote workers at times.
It is easy to keep the employees motivated.
Remote workers lack a sense of belonging, which is why they can’t be relied much upon.
There are no more staffing issues and no more threat of increasing attrition and then re-hiring headaches.
Lack of customer satisfaction at times can be an area of concern.
There is no hassle to manage a huge team with remote agents as they perform a particular work allotted without bothering about other team members.
It is hard to train and coordinate with the remote workers at times.
Meeting the customer requirements and keeping them up-to-date is easier with remote agents as they have adequate market experience to help.
Remote agents are less familiar with the business functions, thus can be in-efficient at times.
Saving money on equipment, office space, and electricity costs become easier.
Remote agents may bring communication hurdles and may piss you off with hidden costs.
How will remote agents connect to take a regular call for the business remotely?
Most companies puzzle over the thought on how remote agents would help with regular call connection when working from home.
Well, with the help of the internet, agents can connect over a software hosted in the cloud. This way there is no need for the agent to be physically present at the office location. A hosted dialler helps to answer calls and gets access to customer data to perform business functions like a regular day.
All that the agent needs to do here is to log in the details as mentioned and connect easily. The login details filled helps the managers know how and what you are working upon and thus, helps to keep a track. This way the threat to security is resolved.
When it comes to hiring remote workers or making the call centre effective to operate remotely, there are various perks that remote services bring for the business. Pandemic like COVID-19 is not the last one to come; as there are chances that the world will face similar virus attacks in the future.
Thus looking at such necessities, every call centre outsourcing firm must look up to remote functions and help their agents learn ways to manage such situations easily.