Quality vs Quantity in the BPO Industry

Posted by Outsourcing Insider on Feb 8, 2017 5:22:55 PM

One of the most common misconceptions when it comes to the debate between quantity and quality is that both cannot exist at the same time. Services or products that are high-quality take longer amounts of time to acquire or produce, while those that are done in a short amount of time may not be up to par with the standards.

Although there are aspects in life and in business where quality and quantity do not meet and one must be sacrificed in order to gain the other, it is also possible to achieve both in some areas. The perfect balance between these two ideas could not be more essential in the Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) industry where productivity and efficiency are necessary for success.

One of the most dynamic and fastest-growing sectors of the outsourcing industry, business process outsourcing is the delegation of non-primary business activities to third-party service providers. The most common BPO services include front office customer services like call center relations and technical support as well as back office business functions such as accounting and payroll.

According to a 2015 report by Global Industry Analysts, Inc. (GIA), the global BPO industry is set to reach US$220 billion by 2020, to be driven by the rising need of outsourcing companies “to improve operational performance and increase customer satisfaction”.

BPO companies all over the world are constantly trying to find new ways and solutions to improve the quality of their services without sacrificing on quantity.

Quality and Quantity in Human Resource

In order to meet the rising demands of the fast-growing BPO industry, outsourcing companies are always looking for more talent to add to their pool of specialists. Human resource departments of BPO companies are continually hunting for the best candidates to serve their clients.

But hiring employees is not enough to meet the demands of the industry. Companies must also make sure to invest in the talent that they acquire.

In one of his articles, Martin Conboy, one of the leading voices in the global outsourcing industry, noted: “The ability to attract, develop and retain talent within a constantly evolving environment is fundamental to the success of any outsourcing provider. The need for agents with specific yet transferrable skills is becoming more and more critical.”

He advised outsourcing providers to invest on talent acquisition and management programs to enhance the core business skills – transferrable skills such as creative thinking, problem solving, flexibility, written communications, leadership and organization – of their employees.

Quality and Quantity in Performance

Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) or performance metrics that measure quantity and quality are all important in the delivery of outsourcing solutions. However, it is important to note the difference in these two categories: quantitative metrics are more company-focused, while qualitative measures are more customer-focused.

For example, a team of inbound agents in a contact center is evaluated through time-based quantitative KPIs such as average waiting time, average handling time, calls per hour, and completion rate. Some contact centers also focus on revenue-based metrics like revenue per call, which measures success based on the amount of money that an individual agent pulls in per call. The team is also assessed through other KPIs like number of first call resolutions and customer satisfaction (c-sat) scores which are much more indicative of the quality of service provided to the customer.

Improving quality and quantity

There are a number of ways in which outsourcing companies can provide quality services while still maintaining quantity.

Providing employees with the necessary training and support they need in order to be more efficient in their job is one of the ways companies can improve both in quality and quantity. If employees are able to handle problems and solve issues efficiently and minimize the need of the client or customer to call back, they will save time both for the company and the customer.

According to Douglas Hanna, CEO of A Small Orange which is a high-end web hosting company, “While there is no disagreement that focusing on quality is number one in customer service, when employees are given the proper training, personal development, goal setting, and prioritizing tools, quantity closely follows.”

Infinit-O prides itself in recruiting the most qualified candidates and training them according to industry-leading practices to serve the specific needs of the clients. This, along with the company’s commitment to business process improvement (BPI) and its investment in a strong technological structure, makes Infinit-O one of the leading providers of premium BPO services when it comes to Healthcare, Finance & Accounting, Contact Center, and Data & Research. Click here to learn how to leverage outsourcing for your business now.

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