"The global BPO market size was valued at 26.91$ in 2022 and is expected to hit a CAGR of 9.43% from 2023 to 2030." - Grand View Research
Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) services might seem different from call centers run independently by an organization, but there is something basic and definitive that connects them.
There could be BPOs that offer call center services to more than a single client simultaneously, but the challenges remain the same for each one of them.
BPOs can make things easier for many companies by deploying a cost-efficient customer service strategy. Despite these benefits, there are a few hurdles BPO call centers face in improving their experience delivery.
Let's look at multiple challenges faced by a BPO providing call center services.
Apart from merely looking at these challenges, let's also try to understand whether there are call center software that can provide solutions to these challenges.
But before that, let's have a look at how BPO call centers are run.
Why Choose a BPO Call Center?
Companies outsource their call center services to a BPO due to multiple reasons. Three common reasons that these services are outsourced are:
- Lack of skilled staff
- Lower operational costs.
- More time for strategic/core activities
BPOs offer both inbound and outbound call center services.
Inbound BPO Call Center Services
BPOs can offer various kinds of inbound services. Some of them include the following:
- Customer Support
Organizations in industries like healthcare and insurance often get a lot of customer queries due to the complicated nature of products and plans. BPOs are perfectly suited for this as organizations can focus on tasks like improving their product and marketing.
- Order Processing
In industries like real estate, insurance, and software, there are customers that still prefer placing orders by phone. This can become quite time-consuming. Using a BPO for such services is helpful.
Outbound BPO Call Center Services
Similar to inbound services, BPOs offer a variety of outbound services such as:
- Market Research
BPOs are the right fit to collect survey responses on call by following a call script. This data can provide valuable insights for a company.
Using BPOs to cold call potential leads and close deals is an efficient use of outsourcing. This is especially relevant when companies don't have enough reps to make calls to a huge amount of leads.
Despite the negative sentiment towards telemarketing calls, it is an efficient way to create brand awareness as well as generate leads. BPOs have the resources to reach out to a lot of potential customers and market your product or service.
An example of a BPO call center would be when banks outsource their customer service to serve customers round the clock.
With BPOs catering to many kinds of call center services, there are many instances where the lack of quality assurance software is felt.
Let's look at some of these challenges faced by BPOs.
Why do Call Center BPOs Need Automated Quality Monitoring Software?
Similar to organization contact centers, even BPOs have been following a manual quality monitoring process. But that isn't enough to assess agent performance on a consistent and timely manner.
There are many challenges that BPOs face in following such an incoherent process. Let's have a look at some of them.
1. Inability to Evaluate all Conversations
Manually analyzing customer conversations can only amount to a drop in the ocean. Irrespective of providing inbound or outbound services, every BPO handles 1000s of customer interactions.
Any organization or BPO that doesn't have insights can't plan a thorough customer service strategy. This is reliant on the kind of call center QA framework being followed.
There are various problems that can occur when a QA program doesn't cover each customer interaction.
Instead, using an automated call center monitoring software can help BPOs to closely evaluate each customer interaction and stay on the top of agent performance.
2. Untracked Metrics
There are several metrics that can be used to track agent performance as well as customer satisfaction. Metrics like customer satisfaction score (CSAT), net promoter score (NPS), average handle time (AHT), and first call resolution (FCR) can be game-changing if tracked properly.
When manual QA specialists can only cover a limited amount of conversations, these metrics can't be tracked properly. This leads to inaccurate and missing information that could be used to drive positive customer experience.
Automated call center quality monitoring can generate different kinds of actionable insights that can help leaders make data-driven decisions.
3. High Agent Turnover Rates
"59% of contact center agents are at the risk of burnout" - Jeff Toister, customer experience trainer
With attrition rates expected to cross 20% through 2024, any strategy that improves agent morale is accepted by call centers and BPOs wholeheartedly.
The stressful work environment in a BPO can cause burnout and be a leading cause for agents to leave.
Giving agents the support they need and creating a positive work environment helps them feel like they are valued. This can help slow down the attrition rates.
Implementing an effective coaching strategy with personalized agent coaching can help in tackling agent attrition. When an organization is able to tackle high turnover rates, it can also boost agent performance.
4. Lengthy Agent Onboarding Processes
“New worker productivity is halted at around 25% during the first 30 days” - Gallup
Coupled with high agent attrition rates, a lengthy onboarding process can be a huge problem for BPO call centers. The continuous need for new agents and the time required to onboard each of these agents can heavily impact overall customer satisfaction and BPO performance.
Automating the agent onboarding process with dedicated training material can help agents ramp up faster and start their work earlier than before.
5. Unflagged Compliance Violations
"Data security is a key issue for 68% of outsourced organizations contemplating cloud computing." - Digital Guardian
Adhering to compliance is one of the top three priorities for any call center. Ensuring that all call center agents adhere to compliance standards often becomes difficult to implement.
Using an automated quality monitoring process makes it easier to flag all compliance violations. When customer service managers are aware of all the violations that happen, precautions can be set in place to avoid such violations happening in the future.
Call center agents can be informed about common violations caused by agents and given the necessary training to reduce the number of similar situations.
6. Inefficient Auditing Process
A major outcome from any call center QA framework is the continuous improvement of agents.
In a manual call center QA process, the QA team has to follow lengthy and repetitive steps. To understand the inefficiency of manual call center QA, here's how an auditor audits a single call.
Such a repetitive and time-consuming process impedes the speed of auditing as well as reduces the amount of feedback received by agents. When agents don't receive the right feedback, agent productivity takes a hit in BPOs
While majority BPOs are making the switch towards automated quality management, there are those that still want to stick with a manual quality assurance program. For such BPO call centers, there are free tools that streamline the auditing process and improve call quality standards.
7. Ineffective Agent Training
"83% of high-performing service agents say they get the training they need to do their job well compared to only 52% of underperformers." - Salesforce
Organizations that want to improve customer service can see a direct improvement if they have effective agent training programs.
Using a generic coaching program for all agents won't show results with improving customer satisfaction. Agents should receive tailored sessions that take their strengths and weakness into consideration.
8. Lack of Insights into Customer Behavior
"80% of companies use customer satisfaction scores to analyze customer experience and improve it." - Harvard Business Review
The only direct way to evaluate customer satisfaction is by post-call surveys. There are many other ways to assess it using detailed metrics.
Software that can track and collate these customer satisfaction metrics is invaluable in today's world where data reigns supreme. When these key performance indicators are prioritized in planning experience delivery strategies, it becomes easier to boost customer satisfaction.
Apart from understanding how satisfied customers are. there is something that most call center BPOs don't get access to - insights on customer behavior.
It is impractical to expect a manual quality assurance team to analyze and assess customer behavior based on call recordings. On the other hand, automated tools can leverage the power of machine learning and natural language processing to analyze customer interactions.
Reports into competitor analysis, product perception, and escalation are made available using these tools. These insights can be used to improve customer satisfaction.
9. Scattered Customer Data
BPO's today have evolved beyond phone calls and now offer service across various touchpoints in the customer journey. This can lead to customer data being spread across different places in an inconsistent manner.
Customers reach out using different channels and having inconsistent data across these channels result in a fragmented customer experience. Using quality monitoring tools that can be integrated into your CRM allows you to update customer data as soon as customer interactions are over.
10. Poor Industry Knowledge
BPOs are usually well-equipped to handle requirements of different companies, but things get a bit complicated when it comes to companies that have technical products and services.
For example, imagine that a Healthech company that offers remote patient monitoring has outsourced their customer support to a BPO. A huge number of calls would be from patient's loved ones enquiring about anomalies in tracking or emergency calls due to sudden changes in health.
In such situations, there is a significant gap in the knowledge agents have and the details expected by patient’s family. Using a learning management systems (LMS) can help BPOs impart product knowledge in a timely manner to agents.
With so many challenges plaguing BPOs, it is evident that there needs to be some kind of solution for smooth operations.
Results first, payment later.
What can Convin's Automated Quality Assurance Offer Customer Service BPOs?
Convin is an automated voice-analytics platform that can help BPO call centers in quality monitoring process. Such tools can help BPOs to maintain quality standards and increase operational efficiency.
1. 100% Audited Conversations
Leveraging the power of artificial intelligence, quality assurance software can evaluate every interaction as soon as it done. This is irrespective of the channel, whether it be customer calls, chats, email or social media.
Unlike a manual call center quality assurance program, having insights from every single interaction done by the customer service team is really valuable.
This can help BPOs to create an excellent customer service strategy. Having all conversations audited also allows agents to receive a complete analysis of their wins and losses.
2. Personalized Agent Coaching
When agents receive coaching that is tailored to their strengths, weaknesses and progress, it can improve both individual agent performance as well as the overall call center's performance.
Such an effective coaching strategy can help reduce ramp-up time by 60%, bridge the knowledge gap, and reduce agent turnover by improving employee engagement.
3. Detailed Customer Intelligence
Having detailed insights into metrics that were previously overlooked can prove to be a game-changer.
Metrics like abandonment rate and customer churn helps managers to pinpoint customer issues which would otherwise go unknown. When a BPO call center leverages these insights, increasing customer satisfaction becomes easier.
4. Compliance with Major Security Standards
When quality assurance software is equipped with the latest compliance standards, it becomes easy to flag compliance violations. Having an eye on all of these escalated conversations allows managers to resolve any problems right from the root.
With solutions to many of the problems faced by BPOs, it is a loss to not give Convin a trial.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. What is the Difference Between BPOs & Contact Centers?
Both BPOs and contact centers have customer service teams, but their difference lies in where do they operate from. Contact centers are run by the organization itself while BPOs run outsourced operations from an independent workspace.
2. What is Quality Monitoring in a Call Center?
Call center quality monitoring is the process of evaluating customer conversations and assessing them for agent performance. It is an eternally ongoing process and is important till the last day a call center is run.
3. Why is Quality Assurance Important in a Contact Center?
Quality assurance helps ensure that quality standards are met by every customer service team. It can help to improve performance as well as keep customers satisfied.
4. What is a BPO Call Center?
A BPO call center is a business model that undertakes call center services for their client. It is run similarly to a regular call center, but in a BPO, the agents aren’t employed under the organization whose customers they serve.
5. What is BPO vs Call Center?
There are 2 kinds of call centers - organizations that run their own call center, while others outsource their call center requirements to a BPO.
6. Why Choose a BPO Call Center?
Organizations choose BPOs primarily to reduce operational costs. BPOs are also helpful for companies that are just starting out and can’t hire too many agents for customer support.
7. Is BPO Call Center Hard?
Employees in a BPO call center need to have the temperament and agility to handle multiple tasks simultaneously while dealing with different kinds of people.
8. What is a BPO example?
A lot of banks outsource their customer service to BPO call centers. Customers should receive support outside banking hours as people make payments throughout the day.
9. How do I answer a call in BPO?
The right approach to answering any call in a BPO is to be polite and courteous. Maintaining a decorous approach helps customers feel comfortable.