Outsourcing Technical Support Department
Outsourcing technical support offers advantages to hardware and software companies. For one, it can help focus the energy and resources on more consequential matters for the business. Offshoring it can help them save on cost.
But before you jump into the bandwagon, consider some points in order to best benefit from outsourced technical support.
Many hardware and software companies are now choosing to outsource their technical support department. Doing so offers them two main advantages. The first is, by having someone else take care of their support functions, they can focus their efforts more on core business – on research and development. Second, it is usually cheaper to outsource this service than to maintain a full in-house staff. And they can save further more if they outsource offshore where labor is cheaper. An in-shore 24/7 tech support could cost more than $5,000.
Are you thinking of outsourcing your technical support department too? Here are some points to consider:
Be sure to check the capability of the outsourcing company. Remember that technical support is part of your customer service. If the outsourcing company does not deliver satisfactory service, it all goes down to your name and your business. The savings you get won’t help in the long run if you are being ruined by bad customer support service. Take the precautionary measure and outsource only to one that you can trust. Outsource to a company rather than to an individual. And make sure that the company has been operating for some time. Asking for a reference could sound SOP when you are scouting for a service provider, but tech supports usually sign non-disclosure contracts with clients. It means you have to get the info on their track record someway else.
But there are also some questions you can ask prospective tech support provider that could tell whether you can trust them with customers’ concerns. Here are a few: What are their resources? Do they have internet connections and back up systems? How many people do they have for the whole 24 hours? For three 8-hour shifts, there should be three. What are their staff’s qualifications? What level of support could they provide? Do they have a proper workplace? Do they have a standard operating procedure and how does it work? From their answers to these questions you’d be able to get a glimpse of their capacity to perform.
To check the capability of support centres, two international bodies were created: The Help Desk Institute and Support Center Certification and the Service Strategies Service Capability and Performance Standards.
In order to save on outsourcing cost, subscribe only to the service that you need. If you don’t need 24/7 support, then find a company that accepts support on standard hours only. Also, ask whether their service is exclusive to you or shared with another. You can haggle for a lower price if it’s the latter case.
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