As we get over the disruption of recent weeks and look towards the future, companies are considering whether their current contact centre partners or in-house operations are equipped to deliver in our new reality.

It’s becoming clear that things are unlikely to return to what they were before. With this in mind, if businesses want to continue to deliver the best customer experience, they should reconsider what they look for in their CX providers.

In the past, many companies have declined to have agents working at home and have chosen partners that didn’t provide Work At Home (WAH), or have kept their customer service inhouse.

The great service provided may have worked in the original context but, when the playing field changed, did it continue to be up to the task? In the past few weeks, many organisations have found that their model doesn’t perform well in a WAH environment because they lack the necessary experience or technology.

In addition to this, many have identified they need to invest in areas such as self-service, automation and digitalisation. For some, this was because they had regarded what they already had as adequate. For others, investment in these areas were regarded as an unnecessary business expense.

So, the future is not just about work-at-home people. It’s about looking at the entire customer service model and choosing or adding partners that are able to create that total environment.

How do we move forward?

Companies that have gone through the pain of transitioning to home-based support and are working with a solution that isn’t really delivering on their needs can now reflect on how their future needs differ from the past. Does their at-home operation or their existing outsource partner have all the tools needed to properly support customers going forward? For most in-house operations to achieve this, they need to buy-in expertise. And many contact centre outsourcers don’t have the necessary tools either, and may well need to bring in partners themselves to deliver change.

For customer service outsourcers, the industry has changed forever. In future, WAH agents will probably take calls alongside those within a building. The need to look at how services will be enhanced by new elements such as automation, digitisation, and work-at-home is very present, if they will ensure the complete range of options are there for clients. This might mean buying capabilities or building relationships with partners. One thing’s for sure, those that offer only in-centre customer support will struggle to compete.

This crisis has highlighted that the outsourcing industry needs to offer so much more than just people working in contact centres.

Whether you’re looking for a partner that can ensure your customer experience model meets all of your needs moving forward, or you need relationships with several partners that delivers in areas such as work-at-home, self-service, automation, and digitalisation, get in touch.

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