In the last 2 decades, a lot of mid to large-sized companies have started outsourcing their support operations through third party call center agencies. The call center industry has flourished significantly and these offer outstanding support operations to their client companies. However, not all businesses have the financial means to resort to services of typical call center setups. For many small-sized companies the viable alternative is resorting to services of virtual call centers.
Basics of a Virtual Call Center
As a matter of fact, virtual call centers also offer phone support solutions for their client companies- much like typical call centers. However, no dedicated office space is used in the case of virtual call centers. These call centers are run by remote call center agents who may be positioned at various places. However, they connect with each other through internet and cloud services and the caller does not feel the difference while talking to them. Usually, the Virtual call center employees are freelancers who work from home or work in smaller centers.
Companies offering VCC services
There are companies that offer VCC Services for SMBs. They offer tailor-made call center services for various types of clients. For example, you can opt for a small team of remote agents for your company’s support needs. So you may also opt for a couple of freelancers working under these agencies if you have a startup with a modest budget. You can hire dedicated agents to cater to your company needs or shared agents who also work for other client companies. They can offer telephonic support and live chat support too. You can avail these services for limited hours or 24×7, as per your needs.
Advantages of choosing VCC setups
The SMBs opt for virtual call center solutions mostly because it is much more affordable than typical call centers. The VCC agents have their own hardware and software setup in place and the client companies do not have to bear those costs.
The VCC model can also be perfect for businesses that operate in specific seasons, not yearlong. So, by choosing VCC services, the companies do not have to invest in facilities when they do not need support services.
While opting for the VCC services can help your company save money, by recruiting agents who respond to calls of customers round the clock, you can make your brand appear credible to the callers. The customers will think of your company as a reliable one.
Tips to manage a virtual call center
While there are advantages of using virtual call centers, call center phone software needs to adopt suitable policies to ensure the operations run as desired.
- Using the right technology and software- Since the management in the VCC setup cannot monitor the activities of the remote agents like it is possible in a typical in-house setup, deploying the right technology is important. Most of the VCC setups make use of cloud-based software using which agents can be tracked and their online activities can be monitored. The management can also benefit from the usage of features like call recording and forwarding. There are many such applications and picking the right one will be required. It is prudent to use software with a call center dashboard that makes monitoring all activities simple. It can also be useful to tweak settings to check log in time of the agents and track their online activities.
- Getting the right agents- While VCC services are often offered by remote agents who can be freelancers or agents working for several companies, hiring professional candidates is a prerequisite. It is better to recruit agents who have years of experience of working in VCC setups rather than new candidates who are willing to work for less amount! After all, the performance of the agents is directly related to the image and reputation of your brand.
- Using tool integration- Integrating the right software can be crucial to the success of a VCC setup, as it is. The call center software can be linked to the customers and product database, to begin with. This will give the remote agents real-time access to the required information. The application can also be integrated with other important business software like email and live chat. This will help save time and reduce the scope of errors.
- Required training-Sometimes, it may be necessary to offer required training to the remote agents, especially the newer ones. They can be offered training through online video tutorials, audio clips, and PDF materials, The calls recorded using the application’s call recorder can also be handy in this regard.