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What Is a Call Center? The Behind-the-Scenes Guide for Companies Considering Outsourcing

If your business has reached the point where it needs the capabilities that a professional call center can provide, you may have some questions about what goes on within a typical call center. After all, what is a call center representative, anyway? What role can they play in your organization?

This guide will give you a better understanding of the types of tasks a call center handles, including customer support, lead generation, technical support, inbound sales, and more.

One of the major perks of an BPO call center is the flexibility it provides businesses. For example, if your firm chooses to launch a new product line or expand an existing one, the call center can similarly adapt its practices and training to accommodate the rollout of a new or expanded service.

Additionally, your contact center can assist in managing customer accounts, providing data and market research, and handling the billing process, thereby increasing your business’s accounts receivable turnover ratio. Additionally, a BPO can scale up and down in response to your busy times.

Read on to learn more about what a BPO call center is, including the benefits a business process outsourcing (BPO) partner can provide!

What is a Call Center?

How a Call Center Can Boost Operational Efficiency and Customer Satisfaction

The advantages that a call center brings to your firm can be narrowed down to two major benefits:

  1. Improved operational efficiency: One key area where these outsourcing companies can immediately impact operating cash flow is the accounts receivable turnover ratio. By decreasing the amount of time required to collect cash from customers, your call center can demonstrate immediate financial results.
  2. Greater customer satisfaction: By monitoring and improving metrics like first contact resolution (FCR) and average handling time (AHT), your contact center can make your customers happier by reducing the amount of time required to solve their problems.

A nearshore call center can bring these two major benefits to your business by harnessing your subject matter expertise and its scalable infrastructure.

In doing so, fixed costs and capital expenditures will transform into variable costs that can scale up and down with the release of new products and services your business introduces or during busy seasons.

Call Center Success Stories

Companies across industries have reaped the benefits of outsourcing. For example, a global software giant saw a 30% increase in customer satisfaction rates and a significant decrease in operating costs by outsourcing their call center to a reputable BPO.

Similarly, an online retailer managed to handle the increased call volume during the holiday season without compromising service quality by leveraging a nearshore BPO partner.

These success stories stem from improved customer service metrics and flexible staffing that allows the BPO partner to upscale or downscale its operations based on cyclical trends in a given industry, as well as in response to increased customer demand.

Best Practices in Working with an Outsourced Call Center

One key advantage of working with an offshore or nearshore BPO partner to manage your operations is the lower labor costs in that region. With lower labor costs, you can achieve greater savings in staffing, training, and management.

Additionally, BPO firms have expertise in their area of operations. When working with a BPO partner, consider assigning members from your organization’s customer experience department to spearhead the partnership.

An additional key accountable person should be your organization’s chief operating officer or highest-ranking employee tasked with managing your call center relationship. This individual can provide the institutional expertise your partner needs to provide efficient training and onboarding of new representatives.

When analyzing the numerical results of your BPO partner, consider breaking your analysis into these two segments:

  • Effects on financial ratios: In addition to your receivables turnover, you should also examine your return on equity (ROE) as well as other forms of activity ratios, such as days sales outstanding (DSO).
  • Effects on customer satisfaction: The most common metrics to monitor over time include customer satisfaction index (CSAT), call desertion rate (CDR), service level, and occupancy ratio, among others.

If you have the capabilities in-house, you can also conduct a more rigorous analysis of your organization’s performance by using regression analysis and ANOVA studies.

The Challenges in Partnering with an Offshore or Nearshore Call Center

All new partnerships involve a certain degree of “growing pains.” These challenges typically revolve around the following areas:

  • Data security: Handling sensitive customer data requires robust security measures to prevent data breaches. Ensure that your company does its due diligence with respect to the BPO partner’s data governance practices.
  • Quality maintenance: Ensuring the service quality aligns with your company’s standards can be challenging. Consider having an accountable team member responsible for overseeing this subject.
  • Cost management: Your organization should remain vigilant in monitoring unexpected cost variances in your BPO partner’s operations.
  • Language barriers: Some offshore partners may have challenges with English proficiency in their operations. Consider a nearshore partner to alleviate this challenge.
  • Customer perception: Some customers may have reservations about interacting with outsourced call centers, especially if they are located overseas. Mitigating these downsides involves close collaboration between your organization’s operating principals and the BPO partner’s management team.

Explore Whether Outsourcing Your Call Center Makes Sense for Your Business

Confie BPO offers a nearshore call center solution that can boost your firm’s financial efficiency and operating leverage while delighting your customers. To get started, contact Confie BPO at 800-684-2276 or by email at