Discuss, debate and exchange ideas on latest trends and opportunities in the Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) landscape. Deliberate on adding “business value” to clients, vendors, employees and various other stakeholders to enhance customer satisfaction and sustain long term partnerships.

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When the old customer service script doesn't work anymore...

You think any BPO model delivers pretty much the same kind of high-quality end-customer experience as any other? Or do you think a BPO must expressly build elements that are crucial to high-quality customer experience into its business model? A colleague of mine threw these questions at the CXO of a celebrated US credit card bank while taking part in an industry conclave. The questions seemed to have set alarm bells ringing in his mind. For, the CXO turned reflective. Like anyone in his place would be. Customer experience, as we well know, is the hardest for any BPO to build into its business DNA. Especially considering that many BPO providers/buyers take the old school scripted approach to delivering customer experience. Old scripts aren't working anymore. At their best, these process-standardization-based approaches might help the BPO meet regulatory compliance, that's all. All this said, customer experience, once built, is easier to sustain, unlike, say, your product/service differentials. My colleague, Vijay Narsapur's Point of View, 'Enhancing Customer Experience with the Right BPO Model' discusses how you can make the right moves toward enhancing customer experience and see your efforts paying off big time. 

Customer experience is a measure of "how a customer feels". Over the past year we have seen customers getting more and more demanding. Increasingly, they are requesting immediate escalation of unresolved issues and are using social media services like Facebook and Twitter to make sure their voices are heard. They are vocal about the smallest of changes to how they are treated. Customers expect super-fast responses and demand that company policies be waived in their interest. And their list of demands goes on and on. Customers today increasingly compare the service they receive not with what peers are receiving from a competitor, but with what customers are receiving from any best-in-class service company. Therefore, in matters like customer service, the competition for a telecom company no longer comes from the service levels its direct competitor is providing.

BPO providers/buyers must navigate the above issues as well as deliver business operational metrics for clients. Their challenges are manifold. They must leverage technology to ensure first contact resolution. They must have robust operational structures in place. They must move to outcome-based performance models. In short, BPO providers/buyers must put more skin in the game like never before.

Lots of thought points for BPO providers and buyers to improve how customers feel when their service 'touches' them. I particularly liked this nice little nugget in Vijay's Point of View: "Customer needs and BPO models may be thought of together - much to the profit of both". An inclusive revenue model that should interest both customer and shareholder, balancing all of their interests. What do you say?

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