Best Practice Checklist for Contact Centre Outsourcing

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1 Introduction As the old adage goes, the customer is always right; therefore, customer care has always got to be right. Multi-channel contact centres are a fact of modern commercial life. Over 40% of customers now attempt to make contact through alternative methods before picking up the phone. Without prodigious investment in technology and training, your contact centre operation will be substandard and you will give away ground to your competitors. Outsourcing is a solution available to organisations who want to increase the value and quality of their contact centre operations while remaining cost efficient. The National Outsourcing Association has gathered the shared learning from its members into this best practice checklist aimed at end users. The more points you can check off the better shape you are in. Remember, outsourcing may not be the answer for everyone but by reflecting on the following questions, you will have the best possible chance of delivering the value you need from your contact centre. We hope you find it useful. CHECKLIST TOPICS The checklist covers the four key stages outlined in the NOA lifecycle: Strategic Leadership Relationship Engagement Transition and Change Relationship Management Martyn Hart NOA Chairman

2 Benefits of Contact Centre Outsourcing Quality Accelerate response times Increase profitability Ensure quality of transition Filter contact channels Maximise marketing opportunities Manage call overspills Gain specific expertise Keep abreast of new technology Increasing Value Minimise the cost of lost opportunities Minimise risk associated with poor customer service Reduce service costs and associated overheads Minimise in-house staff costs Ensure out-of-hours cover Guarantee customer service levels Assure compliance with relevant legislation Protect your business with a disaster back-up service ITIL Call Centre Focus The UK Contact Centre Decision-Makers Guide Call Centre Helper Contact Center World International Customer Management Institute sourcingfocus.com 2

3 Strategic Leadership and Vision What are your goals? Have you established your contact centre requirements in an investment case? Do you have engagement from the Board? Is there a supporting governance model? How will you begin building your team? Have you established a cost base? How do you want to buy the services? Is there a clear communication strategy for stakeholders? Have you undertaken market research to identify sourcing options? Are all responsibilities clear and documented? Do you understand your channel s value proposition? Have you considered what is important to your customers? How does your governance model support delivery? Is there an established mechanism for innovation? Have you chosen a documented procurement process or a dialogue process? Do you begin procurement with a short-listing process? 3 NOA Pathway National Outsourcing Association Contact Centre Steering Committee Department for Business, Innovation and Skills Customer Contact Association CCA Global Standard

4 Relationship Engagement Have you established a cultural match with your suppliers? Do your suppliers share similar values? Have you carried out multiple site visits with a stringent capability analysis? Do you review and monitor customer contact experiences across channels? How do you identify and resolve communications and challenges between parties? Do you share similar expectations? Does your supplier provide the right customer insight? Have you reviewed legislation and regulations? Are you aware of the IT integrator? Does your contract support your organisation s overarching strategy? Have you understood your cancellation charges? Does your supplier have the required software and technology infrastructure? 4 Information Commissioner s Office BS A Standard for Collaborative Partnering Recom Research Customer Insight / Management International Customer Service Institute

5 Transition and Change Do you have a clear transition plan? Are consumers staying connected throughout the transition? Do you have the processes to ensure effective front-end technologies? Do you have the right management processes? Have you complied with relevant legislation and guidelines? Have you established a change communication system? What are the training and mentoring opportunities? Are expectations balanced regarding level of detail and cost? How often do you review existing contracts? Have you established an exit plan? Legal News and Guidance BS A Standard for Collaborative Partnering TUPE Resources NOA / KPMG Innovation for Collaboration Research 5

6 Relationship Management Do you have a process to regularly check the contract? How do you consistently monitor goals and responsibilities? Are you able to link goals to an incentive programme? Is there a plan for continuous customer improvement? Do you record communications between parties? What additional value can be achieved from the relationship? How do you implement robust governance and ongoing communication models? Are you continually investing in the relationship? How do you assess value with your supplier? Do you benchmark to ascertain your supplier s output? Does the partnership encourage fresh thinking? How do you monitor and promote a collaborative culture? Gartner Relationship Management Customer Relationship Management Association NOA HR and Talent Management Steering Committee BS A Standard for Collaborative Partnering 6

7 Checklist summary Strategic Leadership and Vision What are your goals? Have you established your contact centre requirements in an investment case? Do you have engagement from the Board? Is there a supporting governance model? How will you begin building your team? Have you established a cost base? How do you want to buy the services? Is there a clear communication strategy for stakeholders? Have you undertaken market research to identify sourcing options? Are all responsibilities clear and documented? Do you understand your channel s value proposition? Have you considered what is important to your customers? How does your governance model support delivery? Is there an established mechanism for innovation? Have you chosen a documented procurement process or a dialogue process? Do you begin procurement with a short-listing process? Relationship Engagement Have you established a cultural match with your suppliers? Do your suppliers share similar values? Have you carried out multiple site visits with a stringent capability analysis? Do you review and monitor customer contact experience across channels? How do you identify and resolve communications and challenges between parties? Do you share similar expectations? Have you reviewed legislation and regulations? Are you aware of the IT integrator? Does your contract support your organisation s overarching strategy? Have you understood your cancellation charges? Does your supplier have the required software and technology infrastructure? 7 Transition and Change Do you have a clear transition plan? Are consumers staying connected throughout the transition? Do you have the processes to ensure effective front-end technologies? Do you have the right management processes? Have you complied with relevant legislation and guidelines? Have you established a change communication system? What are the training and mentoring opportunities? Are expectations balanced regarding level of detail and cost? How often do you review existing contracts? Have you established an exit plan? Relationship Management Do you have a process to regularly check the contract? How do you consistently monitor goals and responsibilities? Are you able to link goals to an incentive programme? Is there a plan for continuous customer improvement? Do you record communications between parties? What additional value can be achieved from the relationship? How do you implement robust governance and ongoing communication models? Are you continually investing in the relationship? How do you assess value with your supplier? Do you benchmark to ascertain your supplier s output? Does the partnership encourage fresh thinking? How do you monitor and promote a collaborative culture?

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