February 22, 2017

7 Pitfalls of Choosing to Outsource Sales Calls

It makes little sense that call center owners continue to outsource sales calls with the continued rising popularity of alternatives such as Software as a Service platforms. SaaS has enabled call center managers like you to affordably bring agents back in-house in order to handle your call center on your own conditions. When you outsource sales calls, you entrust the most pivotal part of your funnel to a third party. Is this really the smartest business decision?

Though it may seem like a great way to save money in the short term, outsourcing sales calls results in a poor long-run strategy. Although you may close some deals at the start, when it comes to customer retention, your in-house agents will outperform any outsourced work. Having a team of agents in-house running off a single piece of software, all under your control will help you manage your call center better.

If you’re still on the fence trying to decide which option is best for your company, perhaps you will reconsider after reading these 7 inevitable pitfalls that come when you outsource sales calls.

1. Limited control over agent quality

Without the benefit of features available from some SaaS contact center solutions, you have very little awareness of your agents’ call performance. You can’t utilize a feature like Live Agent Monitoring to listen to live calls while both the agent and client are unaware. You can’t whisper into phone calls to provide on-the-fly training, nor can you barge in to save a poor call. You have little idea of agents’ individual performance and, even if you did, it’s not your decision to hire nor fire outside agents. With such little control over your agents and their call performance when you outsource sales calls, this alone should deter you.

2. Unable to respond to real-time issues

If there is a problem with your calling statistics, you’ll see it as soon as it happens using Real Time Reporting. Knowing the exact moment when things take a turn helps you to respond as quickly and efficiently as possible. Whether it’s a large portion of disconnected numbers, a high voicemail rate, or lots of hang ups, you can take action immediately and implement a solution. When you outsource sales calls, you don’t know if something has gone wrong until you receive reporting, a long time to wait when you could just find out in real time.

3. Trusting a third party with quality lead information and customers

When you outsource sales calls, you are entrusting a third party operation with warm to hot, usually already-qualified leads. These leads are ready to buy and rather than having your own agents to call them, you pass them off to a center over which you have little to no control. If these agents dial this data improperly, they run the risk of destroying the chances with the prospects on it. If this happens, you’ve wasted an invaluable list of data that will be difficult or next to impossible to win back. Additionally, there is a chance that the center will either sell your data, use it themselves, or both.

4. No opportunity to train agents

Not only do you generally lack the capability to whisper in on or barge into calls for in-the-moment training purposes, you have no say in how these agents are trained at all. You are not able to correct performance in real time, nor are you able to hold training sessions to brief agents on recent updates. This responsibility is instead left to whichever manager is in charge at the outsourced center that day. With such little opportunity to understand your product and what it does, how are they supposed to sell it? Who knows your product better than you do, anyways?

5. Agents for outsourced sales calls don’t know your product in-depth

Along with an inability to train agents comes the specific lack of opportunity to train them on your product. They may receive a briefing or some short introduction to your product and how it works but they likely haven’t used it. Nor have they created it, helped build it, or currently sell it. However, you do and know all of those things. Wouldn’t it be easier to teach someone directly rather than going through another sales manager?

6. Reputation management is out of your hands

As a business owner, managing the reputation of your company is one of the most important aspects of your operation. In order to attain and retain long term, loyal clients you must maintain a good reputation. Since you lack Live Agent Monitoring and Real Time Reporting capabilities when you outsource sales calls, you will have a harder time supervising the way agents handle calls. An outsourced agent is under the direction of a different manager with little vested interest in your product. How will you know if they’re carelessly consulting with your clients and customers?

7. Entrusting upselling to agents who don’t truly know your product

When you outsource sales calls to agents with minimal vested interest in your product, how dedicated will they be to upselling? How knowledgeable will they be about your product? You are the only one who knows what sets your product apart from all the others. By bringing in a team of agents and training them yourself to handle calls, sales, and upsells the way you want, you’ll receive better results.

Don’t Outsource Sales Calls – Bring Them In-House

Outsourcing your sales calls may sound like a great idea when you consider the initial savings, but will you continue them into the future? Or will the fallbacks, drawbacks, and setbacks of an outsourced group of agents keep you from achieving everything that your company is capable of? Rather than risking your reputation, client lists, money, and time, take the control of your center back into your own hands. Hire a team of in-house agents and train them yourself so that they are equipped to handle calls with clients the way you prefer.

Keep these pitfalls in mind as you make a decision regarding whether or not to outsource sales calls at your call center. When you’re running a company that will last, the long-term traverse is much more important than the short-term quick wins. By keeping agents under one roof, you can manage and operate at your full potential.

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