The false economy of improving contact center solutions with transactional outsourcing
Matt Nyren, Ubiquity
Here’s an uncomfortable truth to face—your outsourcing plan may be getting in the way of your desired outsourcing outcome.
Your plan probably aims for long-term growth via a promising list of metrics. That’s good.
But a great plan also identifies and tackles complexity that’s hard to anticipate (and even harder to measure)—so your brand is ready to turn challenging circumstances into great contact center customer experiences. Most outsourcing plans miss this part.
Here’s the good news: It’s never too late to change your plans. With that in mind, ask yourself the following:
- Are your customer service agents trained to deal with non-standard inquiries?
- Are your contact touchpoints synched up to handle unexpected scenarios or preferences?
- What happens when you need to go off-script?
If your answers look a little muddy, don’t worry. In this post, we’ll diagnose why many companies seeking contact center solutions easily overlook complexity, what those hidden costs are and what you can do next.
Stick with this. It’s not going to be an easy read—but it could save your outsourcing from itself.
The wayward approach to customer experience management
Companies that plan to take services out-of-house, for example to enhance their contact center solutions, tend to treat outsourcing as a numbers game. And we get why:
- You have to appease so many stakeholders
- You have to focus on more pressing business decisions
- And you have to make it all happen ASAP
Outsourcing is inherently transactional. But it doesn’t need to be a race to the bottom—you shouldn’t prioritize low costs, quick wins and short-term pain points at the expense of the long game of strategic service and customer experience management.
We call this traditional, expedient approach transactional outsourcing.
It’s a recipe for disappointment. And it’s ultimately a false economy. Driving a transactional plan comes with hidden costs that come back to bite your brand later down the line.
Why do companies choose transactional outsourcing for contact center solutions?
Some companies settle for subpar CX without realizing it. And it often comes down to the type of outsourcing partner they choose.
Here are some reasons why transactional outsourcing is a common route for many well-intentioned BPO seekers:
- Inexperienced firms may not know any better—and follow their partner’s lead blindly
- Larger companies have volume-driven KPIs high on their priority list. But reaching those numbers can come at the expense of service quality. Outsourcing players who can match the capacity are unlikely to sacrifice maximizing volume for intimacy—it takes a lot of work
- Larger, established providers are reluctant to change the processes they’ve spent years honing. It’s either their way or the highway
- There’s a misalignment in what should be measured. A great outsourcing partner should accommodate their client’s terms for success rather than railroad them with their own
If any of those sound familiar, you might be in a static and limited transactional outsourcing relationship.
And it could hurt your business in more ways than you realize.
Now about those hidden costs…
If you’re following an outsourcing plan that doesn’t account for long-term contact center customer experience, things might work out okay in the beginning. But over the long term:
- Customer trust wanes
When your customers repeatedly encounter friction and frustration with your service as a result of cutting corners, you’ll erode their trust.
- Brand reputation suffers
You might be hitting the numbers, but if the quality of problem-solving and service design is weak, the word will spread. This damages your reputation. And it’s hard to build up again once it’s diminished.
- The buck gets passed
If your outsourced servicing suffers, the other departments of your business will have to pick up the slack. This means draining other resources to make up for the loss in quality. Nobody wants to be that guy responsible for dragging the team down.
The missing piece: a more intimate approach to customer experience management
Transactional outsourcing misses the unexpected complexity that can undermine brand value and derail productive contact center customer experiences. That’s why we have our own agile methodology that puts customer experience first and makes it simple. We believe more meaningful and flexible customer connections, provided by people, should be part of the outsourcing equation.
We call our approach Relationship-based Outsourcing.
A great contact center customer experience depends on the strength and intimacy of the relationship between a brand and their business process outsourcing provider. By treating exchanges between brands and customers more like relationships and less like transactions, you can keep your outsourcing plan on track for long-term growth.
Want to know more? Let’s get deeper into Relationship-based Outsourcing (or RBO) and how it drives better customer experiences for your business.
Matt Nyren is the president, CEO and co-founder of Ubiquity. He is passionate about changing the dynamics of business process outsourcing by delivering brand-defining CX that increases customer lifetime value.