Pros & Cons of Philippine Call Center Outsourcing

Posted on:
June 8, 2023
10
min read
Table of Contents
1
What are the benefits of outsourcing to developing countries?
2
What are the challenges of outsourcing to developing countries?
3
Top 5 Most In-demand Developing Countries for Outsourcing
4
What are some successful examples of companies that have outsourced to developing countries?
5
What are the best practices for outsourcing to developing countries?
Pros & Cons of Philippine Call Center Outsourcing
KDCI Outsourcing
September 6, 2023

In today's interconnected global business landscape, organizations often face the decision of whether to outsource their call center operations to the Philippines. With its renowned reputation as a leading outsourcing destination, the Philippines offers a wealth of advantages that can transform customer service operations.

However, as with any strategic decision, there are also potential drawbacks that require careful consideration. To give you valuable insights about the strategy, let’s delve into the role of a call center in your business, as well as the pros and cons of outsourcing your call center to the Philippines in the following sections.

What Is the Role of a Call Center in Your Business?

Any business, no matter its size and the industry it’s in, won’t survive without a well-performing call center team. Here are the main roles and responsibilities of a call center.

Handling Customer Inquiries

A call center serves as the primary point of contact for customers, addressing their inquiries and providing assistance. Whether it's answering product questions or resolving issues, the call center plays a crucial role in ensuring prompt and accurate responses to customer queries.

Providing Stellar Customer Service

Call centers are crucial in delivering exceptional customer service experiences. By employing skilled agents trained in effective communication and problem-solving, call centers can enhance customer satisfaction and loyalty, positively impacting the overall reputation of your business.

Processing Orders and Transactions

Call centers often handle order processing and transactional activities. This includes assisting customers with purchases, managing payments, and updating order details. The call center department ensures a seamless and efficient process, contributing to smooth business operations and customer satisfaction.

Managing Multiple Communication Channels

In today's digital age, call centers extend beyond telephone support. They are equipped to handle various communication channels such as email, live chat, and social media platforms. This versatility enables businesses to engage with customers across multiple platforms, meeting their preferences and enhancing overall accessibility.

Building Strong Customer Relationships

Call centers play a crucial role in building and nurturing customer relationships. By providing personalized interactions, addressing concerns, and actively listening to customer feedback, call center agents contribute to fostering long-term connections and customer loyalty. This relationship-building aspect is essential for sustainable business growth.

What Are the Pros of Outsourcing Your Call Center to the Philippines?

Compared to managing an in-house team, outsourcing your call center to the Philippines poses a lot more benefits if done correctly. Let’s take a look at some of the pros below.

Cultural Adaptability

Filipino call center agents are known for their adaptability and ability to connect with customers on a personal level. They are well-versed in Western culture, familiar with common practices, and attuned to cultural nuances. This cultural alignment allows them to quickly establish rapport and build trust with customers, creating a positive customer experience from the very first interaction.

Understanding the cultural context and nuances is crucial in providing exceptional customer service. Agents who share a cultural affinity with customers can easily grasp their expectations, anticipate their needs, and empathize with their concerns.

Fluency in the English Language

English is widely spoken and taught in the Philippines, starting from an early age through the educational system. This focus on English language proficiency ensures that Filipino call center agents possess excellent language skills both in terms of spoken and written communication.

By outsourcing your call center to the Philippines, you tap into a talent pool of English-speaking agents who can effortlessly understand customer inquiries, provide accurate information, and address concerns effectively. This linguistic advantage also helps create a smooth customer experience and minimizes the frustrations that can arise from language barriers.

Significant Cost Savings

One of the primary advantages of outsourcing to the Philippines is the favorable cost structure. The cost of living in the Philippines is lower compared to many Western countries, resulting in lower labor costs. This cost differential enables businesses to allocate their budget more efficiently and achieve significant savings without compromising on the quality of customer service.

When you outsource your call center to the Philippines, you can benefit from a highly skilled workforce at a fraction of the cost. Filipino call center agents offer competitive salaries in comparison to their counterparts in other countries, making the Philippines an attractive option for cost-conscious businesses.

Talented Pool of Skilled Workers

The Philippines is home to a vast pool of talented individuals who are known for their exceptional skills in customer service. When businesses outsource their call center operations to the Philippines, they gain access to this abundant talent pool, allowing them to benefit from the expertise and professionalism of highly skilled call center agents.

Moreover, Filipino call center agents undergo comprehensive training programs that further enhance their customer service skills. They receive instruction in effective communication, problem-solving, conflict resolution, and empathy. This training enables them to handle customer inquiries with professionalism and efficiency, ensuring that customer needs are met in a timely and satisfactory manner.

Opportunity to Provide Round-the-Clock Support

Another significant pro of outsourcing your call center to the Philippines is the ability to extend customer service availability beyond regular working hours. As businesses in other parts of the world close for the day, call center agents in the Philippines are ready to take over and cater to the needs of customers in different time zones.

The round-the-clock availability of call center support brings several advantages like enhanced customer convenience. Customers no longer have to wait until the next business day to seek assistance or resolve issues. Whether they encounter a problem in the early morning or late at night, there will always be a knowledgeable and helpful call center agent in the Philippines ready to assist them.

Scalable Business Operations

Scalability is crucial for businesses as customer service demands can vary significantly over time. During peak periods, such as holiday seasons or promotional events, there is typically a surge in customer inquiries and support requests. On the other hand, there may be periods of lower activity when the call volume decreases.

By outsourcing your call center to the Philippines, businesses can seamlessly scale their call center operations up or down to match these fluctuations in demand. During busy seasons, businesses can quickly ramp up their outsourced call center team in the Philippines. With access to a large pool of skilled agents, businesses can swiftly onboard and train additional personnel to handle the increased call volume.

Access to Hi-Tech Call Center Equipment

When businesses outsource their call center operations to the Philippines, they can benefit from these technological advancements and reap the rewards of a technologically advanced and efficient call center environment.

Outsourcing providers in the country prioritize investing in robust and state-of-the-art communication technologies, including Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) systems, cloud-based call center solutions, and integrated customer relationship management (CRM) platforms. These systems are designed to facilitate seamless interactions between call center agents and customers, ensuring clear and reliable communication channels.

Better Focus on Core Competencies

Outsourcing your call center to the Philippines presents a strategic opportunity for your business to streamline operations and focus on its core competencies. With this strategy, you can effectively redirect internal resources, time, and energy toward strategic initiatives, product development, and overall business growth.

Managing an in-house call center can be resource-intensive, requiring significant investments in infrastructure, technology, recruitment, training, and ongoing management. By outsourcing these functions, you can offload the operational burden and leverage the expertise and resources of established call center providers in the Philippines.

What Are the Cons of Outsourcing Your Call Center to the Philippines?

Outsourcing your call center needs to the Philippines can also come with a number of drawbacks. Below are some of the major cons that you need to be aware of.

Lack of Control

When businesses outsource their call center to the Philippines or any other location, they inevitably give up a certain level of control over the operations, processes, and policies followed by the outsourcing provider. This can be seen as a potential disadvantage or challenge, as businesses may prefer to have direct control and oversight over all aspects of their customer service operations.

Despite the potential challenges of relinquishing control, successful outsourcing partnerships involve establishing clear communication channels, setting expectations, and maintaining an open dialogue with the outsourcing provider. Regular performance evaluations and ongoing collaboration help bridge the gap and ensure that the outsourced call center aligns with the business's objectives and customer-centric approach.

Initial Setup Costs

Setting up an outsourced call center in the Philippines requires businesses to make upfront investments in various areas to establish a strong foundation for a successful operation. One critical area that requires investment in technology infrastructure.

Businesses need to ensure they have the necessary hardware and software in place to support their call center operations effectively. This includes investing in computer systems, telephony systems, headsets, and network equipment to facilitate smooth communication and data management.

Additionally, businesses may need to invest in customer relationship management (CRM) software and other specialized tools to streamline call handling, track customer interactions, and gather valuable insights for analysis and improvement.

Transition and Onboarding Challenges

When outsourcing call center operations to the Philippines, businesses may encounter various transition and onboarding challenges. These challenges can arise due to factors such as geographical distance, cultural differences, and the need for effective knowledge transfer.

One notable challenge is the need for effective knowledge transfer. The business must provide comprehensive documentation, training materials, and resources to ensure that the outsourced team in the Philippines has a thorough understanding of the business's products, services, and customer service protocols. This includes sharing information about the business's target audience, customer preferences, and specific industry nuances.

Communication Barriers

While Filipino call center agents are generally proficient in English, occasional communication challenges can still arise due to various factors such as accents, clarity of speech, and subtle cultural differences. These challenges, albeit minor, may require additional efforts to bridge the communication gap and ensure effective customer interactions.

Accents can vary among call center agents in the Philippines, as they may come from different regions with distinct linguistic nuances. Customers who are not accustomed to certain accents may find it slightly more difficult to understand the agents at times. However, it's important to note that the Filipino workforce has been trained extensively to minimize accent-related communication barriers, and their fluency in English generally allows for effective communication.

Legal and Regulatory Considerations

When outsourcing a call center to the Philippines, businesses must navigate and adhere to different legal and regulatory frameworks that exist in both their home country and the Philippines. This can pose compliance challenges and may require additional resources to ensure that all legal obligations are met.

Each country has its own set of laws and regulations governing various aspects of customer service, data protection, privacy, and labor practices. Businesses must familiarize themselves with these legal requirements and ensure that their outsourcing arrangements align with both local and international regulations.

Lack of Business-Specific Knowledge

This lack of industry-specific knowledge can create hurdles in effectively addressing customer inquiries, providing accurate information, and delivering tailored solutions. Customers may have complex questions that require a deep understanding of the industry, product features, or specific processes.

Without the necessary expertise, outsourced agents may struggle to provide satisfactory responses, leading to customer frustration or dissatisfaction. To mitigate this challenge, businesses need to invest in comprehensive training programs for their offshore call center agents.

Negative Impact on Customer Perception and Trust

Customers may feel more comfortable interacting with agents who are based in the same country or who they perceive to have a better understanding of their cultural nuances and preferences. The idea of speaking to someone from a different country, especially one known for outsourcing, may lead to doubts about the agent's ability to address their concerns effectively or provide a satisfactory resolution.

Such reservations can erode customer trust and potentially impact brand loyalty. Customers may hesitate to engage with outsourced agents or choose to discontinue their relationship with a company if they feel that their customer service experience is not aligned with their expectations or values.

Limited Customization

Outsourcing providers typically follow standardized processes and workflows that are designed to cater to a wide range of clients and industries. While this approach offers efficiency and cost-effectiveness, it can pose challenges when businesses require a higher degree of customization that differ from the standard practices followed by the outsourcing provider.

Customization is crucial in customer service as it allows businesses to align their operations with their brand identity, values, and customer expectations. However, with outsourcing, there may be limitations in tailoring processes, scripts, or service delivery approaches to reflect the unique aspects of a business. This can result in a one-size-fits-all approach that may not fully address specific customer needs.

Bottomline: Should You Outsource Your Call Center to the Philippines?

The decision to outsource your call center to the Philippines or any other location ultimately depends on various factors specific to your business and customer service needs. It is essential to carefully evaluate the pros and cons discussed earlier to determine if outsourcing aligns with your objectives and requirements.

Outsourcing to the Philippines can be a viable option if you seek cost savings, access to a skilled English-speaking workforce, cultural affinity with Western countries, round-the-clock customer support, scalability, and technological advancements in customer service operations. This strategy is particularly beneficial for businesses looking to focus on their core competencies, enhance customer experiences, and leverage the expertise of outsourcing providers.

However, it is important to consider the potential challenges involved in outsourcing, such as occasional communication barriers, legal and compliance complexities, training requirements, possible customer perception issues, limited customization options, and the need to manage the outsourcing provider effectively. Businesses that require direct control over operations, have highly specialized industry requirements or prioritize maintaining a close connection with customers may find outsourcing to be less suitable for their needs.

Ultimately, the decision should be based on a thorough analysis of your business goals, customer expectations, available resources, and risk tolerance. It’s best to conduct a cost-benefit analysis, consider alternative options like in-house call centers or local outsourcing, and carefully evaluate the capabilities and reputation of potential outsourcing providers in the Philippines.

Experience the Pros of Outsourcing: Choose the Right Call Center Outsourcing Company

Once you decide to outsource your call center needs to the Philippines, you’re already making a business investment. So, it only makes sense that you take all the time you need in choosing the right call center outsourcing company that can cater to your needs.

At KDCI, we offer various packages of customer support services so you can get the right coverage for your business needs. Our customer service team is composed of Ecommerce specialists that can efficiently provide omnichannel support, including live chat, email, and voice channels in your preferred time zone We even assign you a dedicated account manager to ensure the quality of service is always up to your standards.

Do you want to know more about how our customer support services can benefit you? Click the button below to contact us.

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