5 Elements of an all-inclusive call center deal

After you’ve chosen a bilingual call center to execute your outsourced operations, the next step is to draft an outsourcing contract.

You want to get this right from the start because the business contract serves as the playbook that will guide you and your outsourcing provider in achieving the goals identified. Simply put, the contract defines the scope of the outsourced processes. It also specifies all activities that these operations entail.

If you’re new to remote management setups, however, you might find the contract drafting process a lot trickier. The key is to strike the balance between flexibility and the level of commitment required from both parties. If it’s too strict, both of you will find it hard to freely operate and thus end up sacrificing the objectives. But if it’s too relaxed, performance quality may eventually suffer.

As a general rule, here are the five elements of an all-inclusive outsourcing deal.
 

1.     Service levels

smiling call center agent assisting customer using tablet

Service levels refer to the targets that you and your bilingual call center have officially agreed upon. They describe the following sub-components:

•     deliverables and expected outputs or results;
•     schedules; and
•     methods of implementation.

Depending on the scope of the outsourced services, the list can be as long or short as you want. However, each item must be stated in a way that benefits both sides of an outsourcing operation.

 

2.     Penalties and benefits

call center agent in red holding notebook and pointing with pen

Penalties and benefits must go hand-in-hand with service levels. If one of the two parties fails to fulfill what’s expected of them, a penalty system must be in place. This could be in financial terms such as credits or liquidated damages, which are computed from the estimated loss.

On the contrary, rewards may be given to the service provider for specific achievements. For example, they may be able to significantly enhance their performance and deliver exemplary results beyond what’s required of them.

 

3.     Recruitment process

human resources HR manager shaking hand with applicant new employee

Of course, you want only the best professionals to handle your company’s outsourced operations. You can specify the skill set that your agents must have, but remember that outsourcing companies also have their own recruitment style. For optimum results, both you and your provider must find a middle ground in terms of hiring talents.

 

4.     Performance evaluation

call center manager in meeting with agent

Quality assurance is one of the main pillars of a catch-all contract. It’s also the core factor that determines whether your outsourced services are being delivered in premium quality. You and your bilingual call center must agree on the methods that will be used to measure performance. These have implications on your service level agreements as well as the penalties or benefits that go along with them.

 

5.     An exit strategy

executive tearing business contract

Having an exit strategy as part of your outsourcing contract is vital. You need to have a contingency plan just in case things don’t work out smoothly. You may want the option to a) temporarily terminate a contract, b) fully end the deal after specific events, or c) extend the effectivity of your agreement.

 
Aside from these components, you’ll also need to consider the legal aspects of outsourcing to an overseas company. For this part, make sure to seek legal advice from law experts. They must be involved in the drafting stage and in reviewing the entire business contract.
 
 

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