The way you handle your customer support might also determine your enterprise’s future success. Your customer support representatives are the face (and the voice) of your enterprise. They’re who your customers call when they have a problem, and the way in which they resolve this problem might determine what they think of you. It may also decide whether or not they do business with you ever again. Here’s how hiring virtual customer support may help you with all of that.
1. Saving Time and Effort
Time is one of the most valuable resources in customer service. Your audience wants an immediate response, and if they have to wait for too long, their customer satisfaction will drop rapidly. This is true even if you manage to resolve the issue to their satisfaction. By hiring virtual customer support, you won’t have to allocate your own employees to these tasks.
At the same time, while an immediate response is a priority, they want to talk to a human customer service representative, not a robot (chatbot). Outsourcing this task to a virtual customer support agency or hiring a couple of virtual assistants to handle your customer support is the simplest way to do so. Finding a specialized customer support agency is usually a more elegant solution since you get specialists to handle the task far better than someone without experience ever could.
The hiring process itself shouldn’t take more than 2-3 days, and, in return, you get a massive boost in time efficiency for weeks, months, and years to come. However, this is a decision that will have long-lasting consequences. You need to be extra careful and do your research before choosing who you should work with.
While it is true that this is a business model decision that could make a world of difference, this will only hold true if you integrate your virtual customer support with the rest of your business model.
2. Simpler 24/7 Coverage
Due to the fact that you’re not actually occupying office space in order to run your customer support, there are no fixed work hours. This is a massive advantage in the world of customer support, seeing as how people need it regardless of time. In this day and age, 24/7 coverage is expected, and failing to deliver might feel like a letdown.
One of the reasons why this can be particularly easy to achieve is because you are free to hire people from different time zones. This means that your own overnight support might actually fit into someone else’s regular working hours. This is a massive advantage for more reasons than just one. Other than just the wage cost difference, this is actually one of the biggest reasons for offshoring.
A word of advice, when hiring internationally (something we’ve already mentioned), make sure to take the target country’s national and religious holidays into consideration. There are also a lot of interesting and obscure ceremonies and traditions from around the world that you might want to inquire about in time. After all, you want to understand who you’re working with. Fortunately, you can inquire about this while hiring.
When hiring remotely, you can set the working hours you need as a requirement. This can help with your hiring process and ensure that you have a much easier task at organizing your work schedule.
3. Greater Customer Service Quality
The main reason you need virtual customer support is to provide your customers with a much higher quality of technical support. This comes in several aspects, the first of which is the immediate response (by a human customer support representative) that we’ve already mentioned. This alone improves the perception of your business by your target audience.
Skilled customer support, alongside a decent availability of resources, can resolve almost any concern that your customers may have. For instance, you can either allow your customers to track the shipment that they’ve ordered, or you can give this privilege to your customer service. This way, they will be able to notify the customer of the reason behind the delay in question.
In a lot of scenarios, the quality of customer service will depend on the expertise of the hired representatives, as well as them having an appropriate insight into your day-to-day operations. There are some scenarios in which the questions will be quite specific. While people in customer service don’t have to be knowledgeable about the subject matter, it is vital that they are connected with these departments.
At the end of the day, the key thing is that you deliver the quality that you’ve promised. A virtual specialist, interconnected with the rest of your business, can provide top-notch service on-demand customer service.
4. Lower Turnover Rate
Allowing your customer service representatives to work from the comfort of their own home will lower your turnover rate and lead to much higher employee satisfaction. This also lowers the cost that you have to invest in hardware and restricts your payments only to software licenses. At the same time, a lot of people feel more comfortable working from their own devices.
Another thing worth considering is the above-mentioned difference in wages between the two regions. It is quite likely that this will work to both party’s benefit. For instance, you get to pay less for the same or higher quality of customer service than you would receive by collaborating with someone from your home region. At the same time, the specialist that you’re hiring gets a salary that’s far above their home region’s standard.
The problem with this approach lies in the fact that the hiring process tends to be a bit difficult. The best way to work around this is to hire an agency. By doing so, you get the privilege of having someone else handle the selection and hiring in your stead. All you do is reap the benefits.
Regardless of your industry, finding skilled help will make all the difference in the world. Keeping qualified employees around is one of the prerequisites of success.
5. High Scalability
Outsourcing and scalability always go hand in hand. This is because you can renegotiate the terms of collaboration and expand or downscale the services you need. A lot of agencies have pre-set plans, but you can also negotiate in order to customize services included, thus getting the exact amount of support that you need.
Growing your customer service department is a costly and risky enterprise. Also, your workload might not have grown permanently. This could also be some sort of a fluke, and rushing to expand might end up costing you quite a bit. By having a reliable partner, you get the amount of assistance you need (at that moment). This gives you a lot of flexibility (both operational and budget-wise). It means that you can commit to other departments.
The key thing is that you need to find the right partner, a vendor who can understand the nature of your industry and the fact that your needs might change.
In the end, while this method is not without its downsides, the pros outweigh the cons by quite a bit. This method simplifies your administrative responsibilities and allows you to focus on your core tasks, which is, on its own, great assistance. Aside from this, when organized properly, it can be more frugal and more convenient, as well.