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In today’s marketplace, companies in a wide range of industries rely on outsourcing as a critical part of their overall workforce strategy. They establish business relationships with multiple onshore, near-shore and far-shore contact center vendors to provide customers with front-office and back-office support, while optimizing spend.
However, companies seldom discern whether they are selecting the right contact center vendors, contracting for outcomes, managing them effectively or executing correctly for results.
By changing their approach and doing four steps differently–selecting, contracting, managing, and executing, companies can improve the customer experience and get a definitive edge on the path to high performance.
In order to acquire and retain customers, companies should deliver a consistent and orchestrated customer experience across all channels. Since contact center vendors may serve as the first touch point in the customer experience, companies need to work with the right ones.
To build this network of vendors as part of their workforce strategy, the most successful companies have taken outsourcing relationships well beyond a “subordinated vendor” or “vendor of choice” mentality. These forward-thinking companies are cultivating strategic relationships with an optimized mix of contact center vendors. Accenture experience shows that this type of collaborative and open business relationship can deliver the greatest value to both parties, as well as to customers.
Selecting differently begins with companies considering their long-term strategic and operating objectives, combined with their defined customer experience blueprint, to become a customer’s provider of choice. With these goals in mind, companies can work to realign their internal and outsourced workforces to deliver on these objectives.
The Accenture Vendor Management Framework defines 12 interrelated capabilities that should be carefully aligned to support strategic teaming arrangements.
Companies can often achieve a wide range of benefits from building strategic relationships with contact center vendors, including:
Optimized vendor management with right group of vendors—Identify vendors that are performing well and invest to improve relationships. Phase out poor performing vendors. Begin operating with the right group of vendors to help achieve common goals and business outcomes.
Improved performance through symbiotic relationships—Articulate desired objectives and then contract with vendors to help achieve these goals. Drive alignment to common business outcomes, which can increase performance for both parties.
Ability to serve customers better and help achieve more efficient operations—Increase customer satisfaction levels, while decreasing cost to serve for contact center vendors. Improve first call resolution rates, as well as sales close rates for telemarketing or telecontact vendors.
Part of this approach includes:
Identifying the contact center vendors within a company’s existing network that are capable of teaming strategically, then incentivizing and rewarding them, based on how well they achieve the desired outcomes.
Leveraging other qualified scale and niche players to round out the network when needed.
Using Accenture’s Vendor Management Framework to address the specific requirements of companies across industries, as well as with various mixes of contact center outsourcing.
October 24, 2013
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