Technical Support Outsourcing: What is it and How to Choose the Best Provider
Customer expectations are always increasing. In addition to demanding more from your products or services, they are also looking for increased personalization when submitting inquiries before they buy from you and also afterward if they require any technical support. It is important that your company be able to provide such support because U.S. companies lose more than $62 billion annually due to poor customer service, according to a report from Helpscout. Although it is important to provide support for all kinds of customer inquiries, in this article we will focus on tech support. Let’s first get a better understanding of technical support and how it differs from customer service and how Mindy Support can help you provide better support for your customers.
Tech Support vs. Customer Service: What’s the Difference?
Customer service is all about improving the customer experience. This includes improving interactions between your business and the customer throughout the purchasing process and beyond. On the other hand, tech support is about providing your customers with assistance to a technical issue they are experiencing with your product or service which may be a hardware device or a software issue.
Technical support can be delivered across multiple channels such as phone, e-mail, live support software, live chat, website, and any other tools where your customers lag an incident. It is very important that you support as many channels as possible because various customers will have their own preferred channel of communication. Mindy Support can help you cover all of these channels and offer top-quality tech support to your customers 24/7. However, these are only some of the benefits of technical support outsourcing, so let’s take a look at some additional ones.
The Pros and Cons of Technical Support Outsourcing
Outsourcing technical support has many benefits. Some of the main ones include:
- Lower overhead costs – The technical support companies to whom you outsource the work will be responsible for paying overhead costs like the cost of rental space, utilities, recruiting fees, and many other fees.
- Access to top-quality talent – When you outsource your technical support, you are gaining access to some of the best talents that particular country has to offer. This is why outsourcing to Ukraine is even more beneficial because of the exceptional technical expertise.
- Enhanced efficiency – An experienced outsourcing provider has actualized lots of tech support projects of various complexity. They will be able to set up all of the processes to allow you to hit the ground running.
- Cover any time zone – Companies that sell their products globally will have customers in pretty much any time zone. Give your customers the assistance they need, whenever they need it by setting up an offshore tech support team.
- Reduced expenditures – We mentioned covering every time zone, hiring the best talent, and improving efficiency, now imagine getting all of this for a fraction of the cost of hiring the same quality employees in your local market.
- You retain all of the control – Even though your tech support team may be located overseas, you can think of them as an extension of your in-house team. You will have complete control over the size of your team and can scale up or down as needed.
- Increased customer satisfaction rates – Thanks to your offshore team, you are able to cover any time zone, service multiple communication channels, and provide your customers with knowledgeable tech support agents. All of this leads to increased customer satisfaction rates.
While there are many benefits to setting up an offshore team, there are some drawbacks as well:
- Less direct contact with your customers – Since you have created an offshore team to troubleshoot customer issues, they will be doing most of the communication with customers. However, this might now be such a bad thing because it frees up your in-house employees as well.
- A lot of service providers to choose from – There are so many BPO providers out there all offering similar services. This is why you need to make sure that they have the necessary human resources to hire and scale teams quickly, they have rigorous QA processes in place and they have the necessary ISO certificates to prove their security systems and processes can be trusted.
- High cost of switching providers – If you started a project with one service provider and then decided to switch to another, this can be very troublesome since you will need to manage redundant service relationships during the time of transition, deal with potential business disruptions, and a lot of other costs.
Now that we know what technical support is and its pros and cons, we can go on to the various levels of support companies usually offer.
Tiers of Outsourced Technical Support
There are several technical support tiers BPO providers will be offered to you. While you will have the option to request very specific types of support, usually there are three tiers, or levels, of support available:
- Tier 1 support – This is general customer inquiries that can be resolved quickly
- Tier 2 support – Inquiries that are too complex to resolve at Tier 1 will be escalated to this next level where a technical specialist will communicate with the customer directly
- Tier 3 support – This level of support will be any custom services that you provide. For example, you may have very important customers for whom you may want to provide VIP assistance. This is something that can be set up at Tier 3.
It is worth noting that even though we only listed the 3 tiers of support, the entire process will depend on your specific needs. So, for example, if you want to have 5 tiers of support, this is perfectly fine as well.
In the pros and cons section, we mentioned that there is a wide selection of service providers to choose from, and making the wrong choice can be costly. In order to help you make the right decision, we will tell you about some of the things you should look for when evaluating a technical support provider.
How to Evaluate Technical Support Companies
- Company’s experience & expertise in your field
One of the first things you should ask about is the company’s experience. This includes how many years they have been on the market and the types of tech support projects they have actualized in the past. For example, ask them how quickly they can assemble a team and provide some case studies about technical support projects. It is usually better to prefer larger service providers since they will be able to launch your project quickly since they can simply shift around human resources internally.
- Dedicated or shared teams
Outsourcing providers usually will work in two types of models: dedicated team or team augmentation. A dedicated team will be a full offshore team solely dedicated to working on the tasks of the business for an extended period of time. Team augmentation is simply extending your in-house team. For example, let’s say you already have five tech support agents and you need another five to handle all of the inquiries, then team augmentation would be a better option for you. A reputable service provider will be able to offer you both options depending on your needs.
- Data security and privacy
Last, but certainly not least, let’s talk about security and compliance. When you outsource certain tasks, you are trusting the service provider with some sensitive information about your business, products, or services. You need to be confident that this information will not leak out into the hands of your competitors. When evaluating service providers, ask them about ISO 27001 and SOC 2 compliance. These are internationally recognized security standards that are verified by an independent audit. You also need to make sure that your customers’ data remains secure so be sure to ask about GDPR, CCPA, and industry-specific compliance like HIPPA.
Mindy Support has 8 years of experience on the market and checks all of the boxes mentioned above in terms of compliance with major security regulations & certifications.
Why Choose Mindy Support as Your Tech Support Outsourcing Provider
Mindy Support is one of the largest BPO providers in Eastern Europe with more than 2,000 employees in six locations all over Ukraine.
- Thanks to our size and location we are able to assemble even the most sizable teams within a short time frame.
- We can also scale your team quickly without sacrificing the quality of support thanks to our rigorous QA processes that alert us about technology and quality issues that help us identify certain types of errors faster and improve our performance.
- Each dedicated project manager is assigned to each project and a dedicated QA staff as well.
- We maintain constant and agile communication with the client and provide flexible reporting based on the client’s requirements (historical, real-time, dashboards) and any reporting regularity available (daily, weekly, monthly).
- We can also implement any unique KPI systems to cover all project aspects and client requirements.
Contact us to learn more about how Mindy Support can take care of all your tech support needs.
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February 25th, 2021Mindy News Blog