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5 Things Your Call Center BPO Partner Should Be Doing

Technology has rapidly advanced the customer experience (CX) landscape for BPO call center operations. While traditional telesales that began more than a generation ago remain in use, numerous innovations have been introduced over the years, from Interactive Voice Response (IVR) systems to the latest AI-driven CX technologies.

The point is: the acceleration curve is here. What was once 10 years of innovation might be felt in 10 months.

Here’s a look back at the evolution:

  • 1970s: Call centers were primarily used for banking, reservations, and telephone sales.
  • 1980s: The introduction of toll-free numbers significantly boosted agent efficiency and increased call volumes.
  • 1990s: Call centers transitioned into contact centers, adopting multiple communication methods beyond just phone calls.
  • 2000s: The internet revolutionized call centers, leading to greater automation and computerization.
  • 2010s: Cloud computing and mobile wireless technology modernized call center operations and capabilities.
  • 2020s: The integration of artificial intelligence (AI) tools and virtual agents has expanded support capabilities and enhanced agent performance.

Why is CX More Important Now Than It Was Before?

Well, philosophically, the present will always trump the past. Businesses are seeking solutions today; businesses need to solve problems today. The past has either been instructive or disappointing for these leaders, but ‘today’ and ‘beyond’ will always be their main focus.

And, frankly, too many brands look back on their journey and discover they’ve been leapfrogged by competitors that took their CX strategy seriously, thinking thoughtfully about how to proceed.

Further, there’s simply greater saturation at all points of contact. More vendors, more channels, more industries, and more technologies to choose from. Previously, brands could stay competitive across a collection of table stakes services and technology providers – but today, the table has been cleared and no one exactly knows what table stakes will look like for call center agents  supporting medical billing, political fundraising, or any other campaign objective you can dream up.

So, while things are always changing, here are some CX advantages you’ll earn from your BPO partnerships now and in the future. 

5 Things Your Call Center BPO Partner Should Be Doing in 2024

1. Implementing Enhanced Self-Service Options

Your call center should effectively use IVR systems, chatbots, and other tools to handle simple inquiries. These tools must be designed to reduce customer effort and promptly escalate complex issues to live agents. Customers now expect intuitive self-service options that resolve issues quickly without needing live agent intervention. The stakes are high, as 32% of all customers would stop doing business with a brand they loved after one bad experience.​ 

Particularly useful are AI-based options that utilize machine learning algorithms to analyze customer engagements and deliver resolutions autonomously. Your BPO should be able to detail the self-service options being leveraged to the benefit of your target customers.

2. Providing Proactive Customer Service

BPOs need to embrace AI analytics to anticipate and address customer needs before they arise, preventing issues rather than just resolving them. Shifting from reactive to proactive service can significantly enhance the customer experience.

Near-term, this will include:

  • Text Analysis: If customer responses are too complex or certain keywords indicate frustration, AI will route the interaction to a live agent. For example, in healthcare, complex queries about treatment plans can be quickly redirected to a knowledgeable agent for immediate resolution.
  • Sentiment Analysis: AI systems can detect frustration or dissatisfaction in live conversations, allowing skilled agents to take over if a junior agent is struggling. In political fundraising, AI can identify a donor’s frustration during a call and transfer it to a senior agent for sensitive queries.
  • Automated Ticketing: AI can automate the creation and management of support tickets based on the engagement. In travel and hospitality, AI can automate booking changes or special requests, streamlining issue resolution and enhancing service efficiency.

By implementing these proactive measures, your call center can improve customer satisfaction and operational efficiency.


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3. Utilizing Comprehensive Customer Feedback Systems

Gathering actionable insights through surveys, scorecards, and KPIs is essential for improving customer satisfaction and loyalty. Your call center BPO partner should implement quality management processes to monitor agent performance, identify areas for improvement, and provide personalized coaching. Integrating AI can enhance these efforts by auto-scoring interactions and delivering deeper insights.

Key Actions:

  • Quality Management: Use metrics like First Call Resolution (FCR), Average Handling Time (AHT), Customer Satisfaction (CSAT), and Net Promoter Score (NPS) to gauge performance. These metrics provide a comprehensive view of agent effectiveness and customer satisfaction​​​​.
  • Real-Time Feedback: Implement systems that provide real-time feedback to agents, allowing immediate adjustments based on dynamic interactions. AI can detect sentiment and guide agents during calls to enhance the customer experience​​​​.
  • Continuous Improvement: Leverage AI-analyzed feedback to refine processes, ensuring consistent service delivery and reducing churn rates. Continuous monitoring and improvement help maintain high standards and adapt to evolving customer expectations​​​​.

4. Adopting Advanced Customer Interaction Management Software

Your call center BPO partner should integrate advanced software to manage interactions across phone, chat, email, and social media channels. This seamless communication ensures a cohesive customer journey, allowing for predictive and personalized service​​​​. 

Most industries are incentivized to achieve this, but perhaps none more so than the digital retail space, as omnichannel efforts focused on connecting brick-and-mortar insights into online customer service channels.

BPOs need to empower the agents serving your customers with the most comprehensive customer data for efficient, multi-channel request handling.

Expertise in the complex technical integration of these tools is becoming the key differentiator in successful omnichannel efforts, versus the shiny new object programs that fall flat.

5. Innovating Coaching and Training Programs

Focusing on ongoing skill development and strategic planning for agents is vital. Your BPO should have a plan for continuous upskilling of customer service agents.

Many BPOs are increasingly deploying AI call coaches to enhance agent training and performance. AI coaches provide personalized feedback, analyze interactions, and offer real-time assistance, benefiting both agents and managers.

Here are just a few use cases for AI modules to assist in coaching and training:

Targeted Support: AI tools can identify areas where, say, insurance agents need additional training, such as explaining policy details or handling claims. AI-aided training sessions before customer interactions ensure agents can address these details  effectively.

Scalability and Efficiency: AI can deliver feedback to your entire pool of call center agents in a fraction of the time a manual audit would require. Further, the models analyze every detail of interactions, whether focusing on compliance, regulations, sentiment, or other essential CSAT priorities.

Practical Skill Development: Many brands are already leveraging AI-powered simulations to train outbound sales agents. This practice, interacting with various customer personas, helps improve persuasion techniques, objection handling, and can bolster overall sales performance. 

“What If My BPO is NOT Doing Those 5 Things?”

Evolving customer experience strategies to meet current demands is crucial. 

Prioritizing CX, even during economic downturns, helps retain customer loyalty and drive growth. Strategic partnerships with the right BPO call centers and AI technology providers, facilitated by Outsource Consultants, can significantly enhance CX through labor optimization and technology modernization.

If your BPO partner is missing the mark, we can help them hit that standard or find a partner that can.

Let us help

For those interested in enhancing their CX, we offer free CX strategy call center consultations.

Partnering with Outsource Consultants connects you with the best BPO call centers and cutting-edge AI tools to leapfrog your competitors.