In Revenue Capital
September 1, 2023

A Beginner’s Resource Kit For Customer Service Outsourcing

Author: Sainna Christian

Curated Content from Industry Experts

For many companies, outsourcing customer service is an appealing option to improve the customer experience while reducing costs. However, the decision process can seem overwhelming for beginners unfamiliar with outsourcing.

We’ve curated thought leadership content to help you navigate the world of information and build a guide that beginners and seasoned outsourcers can use as they plan their customer service operations into the coming year. This piece contains content from industry consultants at Gartner, knowledge base management experts at Stonly, and customer experience experts at Zendesk.

And, of course, we needed to include e-commerce operations! Our team was present at the just-completed e-commerce expo, and the conversations fueled a need to give attention to professionals looking to navigate the dynamic world of e-commerce. Although the conference content is unavailable on-demand, we have included two pieces from eCommerce leaders – Tiktok’s Shahriyar Hassan and Shopify CEO Tobi Lutke.

What’s Inside: 

  • 4 Critical Considerations Before Outsourcing Customer Service  – an insightful webinar by Gartner (1 hour).
  • Reducing Onboarding Time for Customer Service Agents by Stonly – a webinar by Stonly (1 hour).
  • Considering customer service outsourcing? Ask these 4 questions first – an article by Zendesk (9 minutes read).
  • Exploring the Impact of Tiktok on eCommerce with Shahriyar Hassan by eCommerce Expo – a piece from the eCommerce Expo Content Hub (5 minutes read).
  • Building a Customer Service Strategy for 2024 and beyond – a webinar by Gartner (1 hour).
  • All-In Summit with Shopify CEO Tobi Lutke talking about customer spending, building teams, working in Amazon, AI, and more. (30 minutes).

Are you excited? Let’s Dive in!

4 Critical Considerations Before Outsourcing Customer Service → Watch Here

Summary

Outsourcing part or all of your customer service can provide immense benefits – but only if implemented thoughtfully. In this insightful webinar, Gartner experts Deborah Alvord, Rupinder Chandhok, and Brady Holbrook provide frameworks to benchmark outsourcing providers.

They recommend assessing factors like:

  • Regional impact on service delivery
  • Leveraging automation and AI capabilities
  • Evaluating customer experience (CX) enhancement opportunities
  • Mapping provider offerings to cost and CX goals
  • With 50+ years of combined experience, these leaders offer invaluable insights for thoughtfully implementing outsourcing to achieve benefits.

This is a must-listen for any CX leader exploring outsourcing to make informed provider selections.

Reducing Onboarding Time for Customer Service Agents → Watch Here

Summary

Customer service agents often have high turnover because this department is viewed as having limited room for career progression. As such, it requires perpetual training of new hires. Traditional training methods like classroom lectures and long manuals are inefficient for companies to stay ahead of the churn.

In this panel, service leaders from Literati, Roofr, Notified, and Stonly share proven strategies to create a more efficient onboarding process. They highlighted the following techniques to reduce agent onboarding time:

  • Make knowledge bases easily accessible to new agents.
  • Use AI chatbots for low-risk practice conversations.
  • Measure key performance indicators starting day one.
  • Ensure process compliance through system workflows.
  • Leverage AI tools like chatbots for training.

This webinar is packed with valuable recommendations to simplify training, accelerate competency, and rapidly deploy capable agents who can deliver exceptional customer experience immediately. A must-watch for any customer service leader looking to modernize bloated onboarding processes.

Key Questions to Ask Before Outsourcing → Read Here

Summary

As noted in this insightful Zendesk article, you must ask the right questions upfront before selecting any outsourcing provider.

The article recommends addressing topics like:

  • What specific pain points are outsourcing meant to solve for you?
  • How will the provider maintain voice-of-the-customer insights on your behalf?
  • What service level agreements and protections does the provider offer to mitigate risks?
  • Is their onboarding process proven to ensure a quick ramp-up of your team?

Evaluating prospective partners on crucial factors, as recommended in the Zendesk article, will help ensure outsourcing achieves your customer service and CX objectives.

This is a must-read for any CX professional considering outsourcing to help frame their vendor selection process.

Exploring the Impact of Tiktok on eCommerce with Shahriyar Hassan → Read Here

Summary

In this article, TikTok expert Shahriyar Hassan discusses how TikTok transforms the e-commerce customer experience through organic social commerce. He outlines his career journey into the world of digital brand partnerships. Hassan then describes TikTok’s effectiveness for e-commerce, owing to its algorithmically diverse For You page that allows wide product discoverability. He notes how TikTok suits most e-commerce verticals where brands infuse entertainment and creativity into content.

Looking ahead, Hassan forecasts three e-commerce trends – the rise of live shopping, creator-based brands, and hyper-personalization. He highlights Pretty Perfect Products, a stationery brand that built an engaged community on TikTok through creative content. The article provides valuable perspectives on leveraging TikTok’s viral nature for organic e-commerce growth across niches. This is a solid read for eCommerce beginners hoping to leverage the power of virality.

Building a Customer Service Strategy for 2024 and Beyond → Watch Here

Summary

Creating customer service plans with limited resources and global uncertainty takes time and effort. This webinar featuring leaders from Virgin Pulse, Bloomerang, and Trilogy covers building an exceptional 2024 plan. They recommend techniques like:

  • Setting specific, measurable goals tied to clear metrics.
  • Optimizing budget and staff allocations across channels.
  • Facilitating ongoing team training and career development.
  • Identifying technologies that boost efficiency and CX.
  • Soliciting customer feedback through surveys and interviews.
  • Fostering alignment between service teams and company leadership.

Leveraging insights like these will help craft a strategy that maximizes service quality within budget constraints. It’s an insightful webinar guaranteed to spark ideas as companies solidify plans for the new year.

Conversations with Shopify CEO Tobi Lutke – Customer spending in 2023, working with Amazon, building teams, AI, and more → Watch Here

Summary

At the All-In Summit in September 2023, Shopify CEO Tobi Lutke provided e-commerce leaders with insightful strategies to scale internationally.

He outlines how Shopify creatively leveraged a distributed fulfillment network, enabling merchants to store inventory closer to end users across markets. This decentralized distribution model helped Shopify merchants drive expansion by reducing delivery times and costs. Lutke stresses how e-commerce businesses can apply this mindset to fuel growth globally.

He shares valuable perspectives on how visionary e-commerce companies effectively structure their teams, serve customers, and strategically manage competition with more prominent brands like Amazon – and how partnerships might benefit bottom lines more than typical percentage battles.

Lutke’s examples provide forward-thinking strategies for building and managing teams and leveraging AI for ambitious international growth. The video offers a wealth of knowledge that e-commerce businesses can apply directly to their growth initiatives to build even more competitive strategies.

 

Are you considering outsourcing e-commerce customer service or customer experience for your business? Use Hugo’s simple ROI calculator to estimate cost savings. Outsourcing customer service successfully requires due diligence. But armed with expertise from industry leaders like Hugo, you can make the smartest decision for your business. Book a demo today to find out more!

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