Whether you sell a product, offer a customer web portal or simply receive a high volume of support calls from customers, a help desk is something you may already be invested in.
However, handling these operations in-house may not be the most efficient or ideal solution.
Outsourcing has been becoming a popular option for manufacturing companies in recent decades.
While it may seem that large companies are increasingly outsourcing help desk functions as well, recent studies have shown that this activity is actually in decline, with just 20% of organizations outsourcing help desk work in 2011. Some hypothesize that this is the result of the recession as companies eliminated outsourced IT operations and have yet to recover.
As a result, several organizations have been forced to take these functions in-house in the belief that this was the most efficient and cost-effective-or, the only-option. However, third party help desk services have become more technically advanced, affordable and flexible in recent years.
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So, why should you outsource your help desk?
By hiring a third party organization, you're actually cutting a number of hefty expenses in several areas including, but not limited to:
For small organizations, the manpower needed to answer phones with enough extra help to account for vacations, sick days and turnovers could even double your payroll. Add this to the space, equipment and training necessary for adequate support and help desk activity can suddenly take up a large portion of your budget.
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Unless you already have a dedicated help desk staff on hand, these calls and inquiries are most likely being handled by whoever is available. This often leads to poor customer service through rushed calls and leaving customers feeling unsatisfied, not to mention taking your employees off the tasks they were hired for.
- Outsourcing your help desk frees up employees to focus on their primary job responsibilities while ensuring your customers still have a qualified professional to speak with.
24/7 Customer Support
Around-the-clock support is something that sometimes seems unattainable by small- to medium-sized organizations. However, afterhours support may be a tremendous benefit or even a necessity for your customers. Having the ability to get help right when it's needed-not tomorrow morning or when Monday rolls around-can go a long way in a customer's mind and experience.
Additionally, for B2C companies, several of your customers may not have time or even the ability to make personal calls to you during standard work hours and rely on the ability to get their questions answered when they get home.
Not only does outsourcing your help desk free up your staff from answering questions all day, but a trained third party organization can also handle tasks such as entering orders or scheduling appointments; taking more of your monotonous tasks off the plates of your employees.
- Outsourcing also adds nearly unlimited flexibility to your help desk operations. Whether you have a busy season coming up, a slow season or a product launch in the works, you don't need to worry about hiring or downsizing your staff. All changes in call volume are handled within the third party organization.
There are certainly some pros to managing these tasks in-house, but the cons greatly outweigh them; especially for small to mid-sized companies. Increasing customer satisfaction and efficiency while lowering costs should be a high priority for any company, and outsourcing help desk operations is an excellent way to achieve those goals that very few companies are taking advantage of.
Bio: Aaron Boatin is the President of Ambs Call Center, a U.S. based call center that serves customers across North America, ranging from physicians and health systems to Fortune 500 companies. Ambs Call Center operates 24/7/365 and currently processes around 30,000 calls per day.