Outsourced, but not Offshored Outsourced, but not Offshored – Technology allows US based Virtual Contact Centers to compete favorably with near-shore and off-shore! Thousand Oaks, CA (December 6, 2012) Two decades ago a forward thinking company introduced the Work at Home (WAH) concept to the call center industry. The concept initially addressed the needs of the direct response industry – primarily responding to radio and TV ads, but also print ads, billboards and others using toll free numbers to generate sales. Today the concept is being enthusiastically adopted by providers of contact center customer service. Cloud based customer service personnel are likely to be more experienced, more mature, better skilled, and more positive and energetic than their counterparts working in a call center. They don’t use up energy with stressful commuting. By working at home, the average individual saves more than $375 per month in gas, vehicle repairs, clothing, meals and non-productive commute time. Agents work when needed, participate in setting their own work schedules and lead more fulfilled lives. These jobs are not just for customer service representatives; sales reps, managers and support personnel such as human resources, accounting, marketing and IT enjoy these same benefits by working from home. This ecosystem provides for upward mobility and promotion from within, which in turn lets Contact Centers “in the cloud” grow an infrastructure that is as robust as their bricks and mortar competition. There are over 800,000 contact center jobs “in the cloud” today and it is estimated that 18% of the US contact center positions will be in the cloud by 2015. Working at home as a customer service professional has been mainstreamed by big business, companies that include Jet Blue, Hilton Hotels, Delta Airlines and others. Jobs outsourced to India and the Philippines, under the rubric of cost saving several years ago, are being repatriated today with favorable economic results. There are several mitigating factors: backlash at language issues, cultural misunderstanding, rising offshore costs, call center capacity saturation in the Philippines and the new KPIs, including: FCR, VOC, CSAT, CE (First Call Resolution, Voice of the Customer, Customer Satisfaction, Customer Experience) that dictate productivity. The cost ladder finds India on the lowest rung, then the Philippines, then near shore, then “cloud based” contact centers, followed by rural bricks and mortar centers (BAM), large multicenter bricks and mortar (BAM) companies and finally corporate contact centers. US based virtual Contact Centers, those operating “in the cloud”, inherently have significant cost advantages over their “building bound” BAM competitors, and often demonstrate greater productivity over near-shore and offshore centers, positioning them at a very favorable total cost nexus. What is cloud technology? Not to oversimplify, but the recruiting, hiring, training, coaching, management, and business processes are all built “into the cloud” rather than run on servers in a data center at a company location. This cloud software is “rented” instead of purchased by many users who demand constant upgrades and features. Cloud software is designed so that data is secure and private. With cloud technology, the necessary infrastructure and security is in place to enable all of the essential customer service transactions: phone conversations, email, chat, twitter, Facebook and other social media and mobile communications, can be addressed by At Home Customer Service professionals. Companies achieve significant benefits by outsourcing (but not offshoring). They have flexible staffing, they don’t have to open and close facilities due to changes in the economy, their market or their industry; they have access to a broader pool of highly talented personnel because they can recruit by skill and experience (saving on training) from all across the country, rather than in a 25 or 30 mile radius of their contact center. They can obtain technical skills, language skills, industry experience as long as they conquer the challenges of the cloud. The benefits include: less real estate, short lead times to setup or expand a call center, less energy consumption, fewer parking lots, less traffic congestion, less middle management. By harnessing proven disruptive technologies, innovative companies are continuing to create more with less in the contact center industry. Cloud computing has significantly reduced the cost of establishing and operating a contact center. This translates to significant benefits for companies desiring to outsource their contact center activities. The model produces meaningful benefits for customer facing service personnel and a strong economic incentive for US Companies to engage a US based virtual contact center. An added benefit is the creation of more US based jobs needed to boost the economy. About 1NWContact 1NW Contact delivers on the promise of quality customer service, customer care and customer acquisition programs for companies of all sizes, with the guarantee of professionalism at a very competitive price. Using only US based agents, the company is committed to helping customers build their brand and increase sales. For more information contact Len Linton at LenLinton@1NWContact.com or by phone at 877/404-5639.