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Articles from Help Desk Outsourcing : Do you need it? by Eric Welke

If your business sells gadgets, online services or applications then you probably have to handle tedious customer service tasks. You might even have a separate team or a whole department that performs these duties for you. If this is the case, then help desk outsourcing may be for you. Most of the tasks handled by a help desk are quite repetitive and clients who call in often ask them the same set of questions. Since the tasks are generally predictable, they can be condensed into a set of procedures. These qualities make the job a good candidate for outsourcing. Benefits The primary benefit of outsourcing is cost reduction. Relocating operations to where costs are cheap without sacrificing quality is something that businesses normally do. Help desk outsourcing can sometimes spell the difference between a company surviving through tough economic times or closing down all its operations. For big corporations, outsourcing is a weapon in their never ending quest to maintain profitability and competitiveness. For small businesses and start ups it is a very tantalizing option. Even at a smaller scale the potential costs are still hard to ignore. Qualify the Need So when is the best time to outsource a particular set of tasks? The following should give you a rough idea when you should start considering help desk outsourcing:

All of your businesses key components have been setup and running. This means that your products and services are ready for selling and distribution, a secure working payment system has been setup, your primary sales channel is generating consistent sales, and all the administrative stuff is in place. Your in-house support team has laid out the groundwork for the common support tasks. This team will become your senior support representatives and your subject matter experts. They will be in charge of training your outsourced workers. Your customer support tasks are taking up more time and effort than the work you need to do to maintain and grow the business. Modes of customer support that can be outsourced:

No matter what your primary customer contact point is, an effective help desk outsourcing process should be able to handle it. If you’re just starting to develop your own process, here’s a quick ranking of which support channel is easiest to outsource starting from the simplest to the most challenging. Chat – pretty simple as you can easily create canned responses and your workers just need to have good written English skills. Customer’s questions are usually simple and straightforward. Simultaneous chats can be answered and resolved. Email – almost as simple as chat but requires more detailed replies, however there is less time pressure for email since it is not handled in real time. Excellent written English is the minimum required skill for workers who will handle this. Voice –This is handled in real time and requires representatives who are fluent and speaks English with a neutral accent. Voice support representatives also need to be experienced and knowledgeable enough about the product that they should rarely resort to researching when they are on the line with the customer. The ability to create rapport is pretty useful here. Remote Access or screen sharing – This goes hand-in-hand with voice support but can also work with chat. Aside from an excellent grasp of spoken English, they need to be technically savvy enough to know how to navigate a client’s computer. Video Conferencing – this is rarely done but the worker skill level required is about the same as those for voice and remote access. Rapport building, good

presentation skills and appearance are also needed. This type of support is also the most demanding in terms of bandwidth and computer resources. Conclusion So do you need Help desk outsourcing? Once you’ve established your processes and gained enough knowledge, yes. It is a logical step towards becoming more competitive. The long term benefits can be reaped as long as we are prepared to look for the right people and get them properly trained and equipped.

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Help desk outsourcing do you need it by ericwelke