How are your outsourced call centre contracts performing?

For many years, public sector services outsourced to private companies have not necessarily been delivered as intended, primarily because the driver was cost reduction rather than a more balanced objective of cost reduction with service improvement.
This error of motive and work migration reflects the experience of the private sector businesses that joined the ‘gold rush’ to Indian call centres in order to save money. The resulting lack of quality was not due to a lack of education, skills and enthusiasm of outsourced call centre employees; rather it was due to the narrow thinking of hysterical Boards transfixed by the cost line. Migration of work to Chinese or Eastern European outsource providers showed a similar outcome.
One difficulty shared by both public sector and private sector groups is the ability to measure and track inbound call traffic from the network though to call closure. It is hard to test the performance of outsource providers if the main source of data is the providers themselves, most of whom capture call data after it hits the telephone system but cannot collect network data.
Report timing is also an issue; it is too late to challenge call centre service levels when SLAs are reported retrospectively and, as a consequence, it is almost impossible to apply the deterrent of contract penalties to encourage compliance with agreed terms, even if Operations and Procurement are speaking to each other!
However, according to press reports, some public sector bodies are starting to apply penalties for non-performance. After a number of multi-million pound, high profile cases, the tide appears to be turning and tax-payers are appeased, at least for a while. Meanwhile, in the private sector, many companies are finding themselves trapped in unsatisfactory contracts.
At Customer Journey Consultancy, we have developed an Inbound Call Diagnostic package that can provide accurate and timely data about inbound calls, from network to closure. The service is simple to set up and provides a cost-effective way to strengthen your position with your outsource provider(s) by enhancing your understanding of what is actually happening.
If you would like to discuss how our Call Diagnostic Service might help you, please contact either Stephen Grey or Martin Wright on 0845 8382 159.