Are you confused about whether to set up an in-house call center for your business or outsource the same? If you choose the latter, the outsourced call center cost is an essential factor to consider.
Outsourcing your call center is a wise decision because it lets you focus on the core activities of your organization. Call centers and customer services outsourcing is a beneficial trend that numerous big and small companies have started following in the last few years.
Partnering with a third-party provider enables businesses to save costs and potentially boost productivity.
This article will discuss in detail the costs of outsourcing a call center, the different types of call centers, and other information to help you make a more informed decision.
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Factors Determining the Outsourced Call Center Costs
Before calculating the call center outsourcing costs, it is essential to determine the kind of services you need, which makes you decide the type of call center that best suits your requirements.
Among other factors, each call center will need different tools and varying levels of expertise based on the service.
Call centers can be broadly divided into two main categories: Inbound and Outbound. These can be based on an outsourced call center, an in-house call center, or a virtual call center, where agents work from different locations and answers calls through the cloud.
Outsourced call centers are the most cost-effective option compared to their in-house counterparts. These centers handle current and potential telephone calls, which might be inbound or outbound.
Inbound call centers receive customer-initiated calls. Companies use inbound call centers to provide technical support, deal with calls about their products or services, manage customer accounts, process orders, and receive complaints. Inbound agents are well-trained to offer support and resolve queries in the best possible way.
Outbound call centers help make sales calls to prospects to sell products or services. Alongside sales, outbound call centers are used to update and verify the database information, telemarketing, conduct surveys, generate leads, follow up on clients and provide other information.
Often, call centers will handle both outbound and inbound calls. The primary determinant of the kind of call center is the volume ratio of incoming vs. outgoing calls.
A Brief Estimate of Call Center Outsourcing Costs
When your business hires an in-house customer support team for inbound and outbound call center operations in the US, you are paying the agents’ hourly rate salary, training, and full benefits. However, for an outsourced agent located in some other part of the world, you are paying only for that call center agent’s salary. In some situations, the actual tickets are dealt with.
This is the most valuable part of customer service outsourcing. However, outsourcing companies can sometimes package their costs in ways that are not clear to the businesses.
To better understand the outsourcing costs, assume that you have decided to work with a conventional larger outsourcer to staff five full-time support agents. Here is a breakdown of the costs that will add up:
First, the management fees will be between $500 and $2000. This is the fee you must pay to start the process and includes a background check and other clerical set-up fees.
The next will be the service cost per agent, which should be between $150 and $400 per month. Some outsourcing providers will charge a service fee of $30-$80 per month per agent, irrespective of the call volume.
Agent salary will be between $12,000 and $14,000 per month. The amount will be exclusive of peak seasons and overtime during holidays, typically increasing costs. Each agent might cost you $2400 to $2800, assuming he gets paid $13-$18 per hour and works 40 hours per week.
Other costs will add up to this amount, including languages, support channels, and call center reporting.
With this estimate, the cost of outsourcing your call center for the first month will be around $1300 to $1700.
Typical Call Center Pricing Plans
When it comes to call center outsourcing pricing, it is good to be aware of the options that call centers will offer you:
This is when a pool of agents will take calls for 1-3 clients daily. This is the ideal bet for cost savings if your business has low call activities or hard-to-track fluctuations.
This is the best virtual office service because outsourced customer service agents are dedicated to working for you alone. The price is higher than the shared plan, though. In this, you are paying only per productive hour for your call center cost.
Monthly Flat Rate
It is challenging to find monthly flat rate-based outsourcing service providers in US and Canada, but they do exist. This is a subset of the dedicated plan where you agree to a flat rate instead of paying the service provider for their agents’ productive hours.
This can either give you many hours for free from your team members or make you pay for the non-productive hours.
Outsourced Call Center Services: Points to Remember
While outsourcing your call center and calculating costs, there are some additional points that businesses need to consider:
All customer service outsourcing companies do not offer the same benefits. Some might charge you for the extra add-ons in the form of call recording, business consultation, quality assurance, analytical programs, and managerial training.
You must also review your agreement terms with your outsourced call center and decide on what additional services you would like to seek. Sometimes, an all-inclusive package is a more cost-effective option.
However, spending time custom-fitting a plan for call center services with modular components might sometimes yield a higher return on your investment.
Another essential thing to keep in mind while collaborating with an IVR contact center or outsourced call center is reading the contract carefully. In the case of big companies, modifying the agreement can bring about heavy fees and penalties.
Reviewing the contract from time to time is necessary because you might be stuck with a service that is either too much or too little for your existing operations. Minimum charges, hidden costs, confusing wording, and quotas often cost more than you realize.
Outsourced Call Center Costs Takeaways
While calculating your outsourcing call center costs, remember that losing connection with your customers is the highest price. This affects your customer satisfaction.
Using a reliable outsourcer for your customer experience establishes a direct line of communication without compromising the focus on your core activities.
Therefore, all you need to do is find the best call center outsourcing provider and discuss the pricing plans beforehand so that you don’t go over your budget.