We have often discussed on our blog how fundamental it is for contact centres to get it right to protect your brand, and advised against gambling with your customers’ loyalty.
In this day and age, profit is often the bottom line and the temptation can be great for organisations to look at call centres as the first port of call when it comes to reducing costs.
The last decade has, for example, seen many large companies outsource their contact centres to countries where salaries were cheaper, such as BT, the largest telecoms company in the UK.
However, in an unexpected move, they have recently repatriated much of their operation to the UK, hiring 1,000 staff in Great-Britain with a plan to hire 2,000 more by 2017, and committing to having 80% of calls answered in the country as of December 2015, as opposed to 30% previously.
At the heart of this turnaround is customers’ dissatisfaction; BT being ranked as the worst telecoms company in the country. With the vast majority of frontline roles delegated to Indian staff members, customers had been complaining about language and communications problems which led to poor handling of their issues.
In an attempt to re-gain their customers’ trust, BT will also operate new rotas to ensure that UK staff is available to answer calls in the evenings and at weekends so that callers don’t suffer from a two-tier customer service. They have also announced that their staff will receive 100 hours of additional training to improve complaint handling.
This turn of event makes a very important point about false savings. Outsourcing call centres to India was most certainly motivated by the imperative to cut costs, but it proved to be very detrimental to BT’s reputation and quality of service. Likewise, undertrained staff could cost you more in the sense that it may take longer to resolve an issue, and more than one call. All this is staff cost which you have to pay for.
It also shows us that nobody can afford to be complacent and take their customers for granted: although BT, as the state’s telecoms company, used to have monopoly over the market and is now the largest telecoms company in the UK, it is as vulnerable as small operators.
If you are considering outsourcing your contact centre, talk to Corporate Connect. We are market leader in New Zealand and we never compromise on quality.