How to Identify the Right Outsourcing Partner: 5 Tips for Small Businesses

how to find right outsourcing partners small businesses outsource

Enterprises, despite their size and nature, agree on the point that Call Center Outsourcing is cost-effective and reliable. A small business may have budgetary limitations or simply may not have the in-house expertise. Being one, you want to carve your niche in the business field, so you allow customer service to be handled by the experts! Your customers are well looked after, issues are resolved quicker, while you cut costs. You’re sold on Call Center Outsourcing! 

The next step is to look for the perfect Outsourcing partner who’ll help you gain that competitive advantage and guarantee your success in the future. This is a crucial decision because if you choose a partner who lacks in experience, whose priorities do not align with yours or who has less/no knowledge about your business, it could prove to be a catastrophe! 

Here are 5 tips for small businesses to identify the right outsourcing partner: 

1) Look For An Impressive Track Record 

Thorough research may be required to look for potential partners. An Outsourcing partner offering the lowest price may not necessarily be reliable. It’s preferable to analyze their credibility on the basis of their past experience in the industry. Check for online reviews and testimonials. Customer reviews give true insight into an outsourcing company’s functioning. Ask for references. Check if their clients were satisfied with the association and if any of them are still using the company. Client feedback can give you valuable information about issues like responsibility and turnaround time and thus, help you gauge the company’s reputation in the Outsourcing industry. 

2) Choose Cultural Compatibility 

Compatibility in culture is required both ways. It’s crucial that the Call Center Outsourcing partner is able to relate to your culture. Only then can they represent your company and stand for its products/services, to the best of their capacity. Cultural compatibility would also connote checking the work culture in your prospective partner. A partnership with a company whose goals and culture resonate with yours will induce better performance and smooth cooperation. 

Surprisingly though, there have been some successful long-term company collaborations between those with different work cultures, since it evokes inspiration and provides a fresh perspective. 

Having said that, it is still definitely possible to achieve a positive corporate culture even when you outsource, or your employees may work from a different part of the world. 

3) Inspect The Three E’s 

Though a Call Center Outsourcing company may seem flawless to you, you still need to be a 100% sure that your prospective partner is the right one. Ensure they have the three Es -- the Equipment, the Experience, and the Expertise to justify your business demands. 

Visit your outsourcing partner’s workplace and check if they use best-of-breed technology, the right equipment - to fulfill your aims. Inspect what kind of projects the company has completed. It’ll give you a fair idea of their focus and if they’ve handled projects similar to yours. 

Find out if they have the technical know-how to meet your needs. Being aware of the methods they follow, and their problem-solving techniques will give you a clearer insight into exactly how your project will be managed. 

4) Be Specific About Your Goals: Communicate 

You want to get ahead of the game. You’ve decided to outsource, done your homework, even done a thorough inspection. Does that guarantee great profits for your company? Not until your Call Center Outsourcing partner is on the same page as you. Here is where communication plays a key role. Ensure your partner understands your goals well and shares the same objectives. Define each process accurately. Set clear expectations, for example, “Get a minimal MPI”, would be easier to implement rather than “Increase sales”. 

Also, in the case of offshore partnerships, make certain that the outsource partner is accessible 24x7x365 on phone or email. This way you can be always in touch, and avoid any kind of unnecessary delay. 

5) Look For Hidden Costs 

A major reason for small businesses to outsource is to cut costs and avoid overheads, while they focus on more important activities imperative for their success. Therefore, you need to make sure that the prices for outsourcing services are pre-decided, and no additional charges crop up along the process. In the field of outsourcing, some costs are less visible. It’s hence advisable to anticipate them in advance and accommodate them in the initial budget/contract. For example, hidden cost due to currency fluctuations – can be safeguarded by including caps and collars in the contract. 

Conclusion

Outsourcing is an infallible way to boost output and efficiency if done right. Choosing the right Call Center Outsourcing partner may not be as easy as pie, but it’s not rocket science either! Treat the selection process with the respect and caution it deserves. 

Invest time upfront to investigate your potential partner, and you can ensure that the decision produces real, measurable results. It could save you from endless repercussions of taking a wrong decision. You could look forward to a long and profitable business partnership, instead of another source of wasted efforts and delays. 

In fact, it is worthwhile to invest in efforts that make your partnership with the outsourcing firm, last longer.

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