4 Risks Associated with Outsourcing Customer Support

Providing good customer service is a key component to maintaining the ongoing success of your company. A happy customer will most likely remain a loyal customer for years to come. On the other hand, if your customer support team fails to satisfy the needs of your customers, you may lose them for life. In order to cut costs and improve the comprehensiveness of their customer support, many companies have outsourced this task rather than keep an in-house support team. When done properly, outsourcing customer support can help your company streamline its processes and be more responsive needs of your customers. But in many instances, outsourcing this important job can lead to frustrated, unhappy customers and a significant loss of business.

Before deciding whether to outsource your customer support, consider these 4 risks:

  1. Losing touch with your customers – When you outsource the responsibility of customer support to third party agents, you risk losing touch with the customers. It can be very difficult to monitor customer support interactions when they are outsourced. If third party agents fail to follow your company’s protocol, lack the product knowledge necessary to resolve the situation, or don’t have access to the information necessary to help your customers, it can result in a negative outcome that causes customers to take their business to a competitor. Often, you will not be aware of these customer service issues until significant damage has been done to your company’s reputation and client base.
  2. Lack of uniform service – When customer support is outsourced, it is less likely that customers will receive a consistent quality of service or be treated the way you expect them to be treated. This can anger customers and hurt your business in the long run.
  3. Providing sensitive data to third party agencies – In order for customer service agents to successfully do their jobs, they must have access to all necessary data. In many industries, this data can be sensitive in nature, such as account balances or credit card numbers. There is a serious risk in providing this data to a third party agency. You must be able to trust that they properly screen employees to ensure their agents do not use this sensitive data for their own personal gain. In addition, there are security risks associated with transferring this data to a third party, increasing the likelihood that it can be accessed by computer hackers.
  4. Conflict of interest between your goals and the outsourcer’s goals – Your primary goal during every customer support interaction is to keep customers happy so that they will spend more money with our company. However, the primary goal of a third party agent is to meet the terms of their contract and service-level agreement with you. If these agents are not constantly focused on keeping your customers happy, they can jeopardize the long term success of your business.

Clearly, there are serious risks associated with passing your customer support services along to a third party. Why take this kind of a gamble when the downside is potentially losing customers? After all, your customers are your single most important asset.