Customer service is important to your business but managing phones can become a challenge. If this is the case then it’s time to find the right call center services to help your business. Call centers and answering services do more than just answer phone calls. They can also help with other communication channels.
While call center services may all seem similar on the surface, the details of what each company offers can vary. Once you start to ask specific questions, you can find the differences. In order to find the right services for you, there are some questions you should ask and features you should look for when researching.
US Based Vs. International
Where the call center company is located and where the agents are located should be two of the first things you find out. While an offshore call center can be more cost-effective, the agents may have heavy accents and your customers could have a hard time understanding. Domestic call centers will have more complete services but could come at a higher price tag.
Outbound and Inbound Services
A major function of a call center is to answer questions from customers about your business. Call centers can also provide other information and support. Some will even dispatch calls to you if the customer needs to speak with someone directly. These services fall under the umbrella of inbound services. Outbound services include lead generation. These services can include follow-ups with customers, in order to ensure satisfaction. Your business may not need both inbound and outbound services so consider what you need.
Shared or Dedicated Agents
The best services offer both shared and dedicated agents. Dedicated agents are the ones that are assigned to your account and give your business their full attention and time. These are best for businesses that have specific needs and need consistency from agents. For a company that has more general needs, a shared agent structure may be right since the services are usually cheaper.
Since your call center deals with your customers, it can have an influence on how your business is perceived. Reporting offers you a window into the day-to-day operations of the call center you hired. Not all reporting is created equal. Some companies offer only basic summaries about how many calls you got, while others can go above and beyond and even provide a recording of the call should something go wrong.
Other Features to Consider
One thing you should check with your call center is its availability. The best services have 24/7 availability for your customers and some even offer disaster recovery services. Select a service that is reliable for your business. Learn how the company handles outages since downtime can be damaging to your business. If your business has international customers, you may want to work with a call center that is bilingual.