Outsourcing your customer service offshore is a common strategic move these days. Depending on the size of your business you can get everything set up in a day! Pretty incredible stuff, but realistically, to do this well you’ll need to make plans months in advance and then go through the transition phase slowly with the main reason for the move being the lower costs involved.
Shabby service from your new customer service team could be the beginning of the end for your business, even if they mean well.
Do Your Department’s Work Together?
Your customer service team might handle every incoming phone call which they forward to the appropriate person in the same building. In theory an external customer service support team should be able to forward calls easily, but there’s a bunch of immeasurable things that may interfere. When you arent able to chat face to face with someone messages can be delayed which can mean miscommunication issues.
Example: Today can all calls for Jayne be redirected to Toni instead
Cultures are a funny thing that are difficult to manage. If you are not an international company, the level of (emotional quotient) EQ you have with your customers is going to be quite high. There are different senses of humor between people of the same nationalities, you can understand how people feel based on certain tones they use.
Current events are something that people within the same country can relate to and they make for an easy way to find common ground.
The Language Barrier
This is likely the biggest barrier to a successful transition to an offshore customer service team. Accents aren’t always easy to understand with Asia being the home of most outsourced customer services which frustrates your customers. Then there is slang used in everyday conversation that can be misunderstood making conversations painful and repetitive.
Will You Actually Save Cash?
There are few scenarios where your business will be able to save hundreds of thousands dollars each year, but don’t forget there are overheads you’ll need to pay overseas on top of wages and there are contracts and redundancies that’ll need to be considered in your current team.
How Will The Transition Phase Happen
It’s not as easy as firing you current customer service team and hiring a new team to take over the following day. A few things to consider:
- How will the current team feel about potentially training those who are replacing them?
- Will you send any of your team over to help in person?
- How do you tell your customers about the changes?
- If the transition looks to be falling apart, can you return to today’s status quo?
That’s a few points you’ll need to start thinking about.
There’s no harm at looking into ways you can save business costs, it makes sense and outsourcing your customer service team could save you big money.
Before doing so there are many factors to be considered before going all in on the move.