COVID-19: Call center agents at home?
Dec 11 2020

Post-COVID call center outlook for BPOs

The COVID-19 outbreak has affected all of our live and digital interactions, and call center operations are no exception. While most of the market trends were starting to form long before and only escalated with the pandemic, other demands on performance and expectations of BPOs may come as a surprise for those not properly prepared. What does the future hold for BPO call centers with customers in the US?

Traditionally, the US has been a very consumer-driven market with many expenditures. However, COVID-19 has heavily impacted consumer sentiment, resulting in a period of prolonged financial uncertainty. For the next 12 to 18 months, people are likely to limit their expenses to purchasing essentials only. In response to that shift, most businesses will have to tighten their budgets and cut back on discretionary spending.

Due to the change in the market, businesses all over the world are looking to become more efficient. Owning and running a call center becomes too much of a luxury. It makes more sense now than ever for companies to draw up upcoming contracts with outsourced providers and continue operations in a more flexible manner. Here are the challenges that BPO call centers will face in order to best utilize the changing circumstances:

Automation

With the pandemic, inbound call centers are seeing an increased workload as customers are unable to come in physically with requests for businesses. Outbound sales may also require heavier use of the phone channel to expand their reach. In order for a BPO to continue offering value to US businesses, they need to be prepared to operate at peak efficiency.

Automation can help improve key performance metrics and streamline every aspect of call center operations. It is high time for BPOs to invest in powerful software with scheduled reports, continuous monitoring, self-service IVRs, and dialer campaign management.

Security

One of the main concerns that US businesses have when outsourcing over to BPOs is sacrificing a certain level of control. Emphasis on data security is one of the trends that has been ever-present long before the pandemic. But with the COVID-related switch from a centralized office to remote work locations, that concern is going to increase even further.

Because BPOs are operating away from customer headquarters, the risk of client data being compromised is higher. And although this is a very rare circumstance, an unfortunate incident can result in a loss of contract, a legal liability, or a possible reputational loss. Leveraging the right tools to enhance security and reassuring US clients that all the proper precautions are in place is the right way for BPOs to handle this pressing issue.

Reliability

In the COVID environment, call centers are dealing with a lot of user-distributed networks, but are expected to maintain the level of quality US customers require. Stable service level availability and a reliable connection will set BPOs apart from the rest of the competition. To provide continuous operations and deliver on those expectations, call centers need to take their hardware and network providers seriously.

These are the fundamental challenges that BPOs will face if they want to make use of the larger workload. The right call center software can allow them to thrive in a changing environment coming from the US market. Voiso can address all three issues due to our own network infrastructure, security features like number masking or customizable role-based administration, a powerful predictive dialer with Answering Machine Detection, and a visual IVR builder with queue monitoring capabilities.

To learn how Voiso can elevate your call center to the next level, reach out to one of our experts.