As we inch closer to another uncertain year, organizations can rely on one thing and one thing only: long-term survival depends on bulletproof risk mitigation strategies.
When it comes to mitigating risk in customer service delivery, diversification is the name of the game. Companies that partner with reliable, well-distributed providers can eliminate the dangers of unforeseen disasters while optimizing for performance and cost.
Organizations that combine Nearshore and offshore customer service teams can enjoy the best of both worlds, gaining the advantages of two reputable outsourcing regions while offsetting the risks and disadvantages of each market.
Here at Everise, we call this strategy flexshoring, as it provides the flexibility of blended work-from-home (WFH) and office-based teams on a global scale. In this article, we’ll explore the many benefits of flexshoring and how organizations can incorporate it into their risk mitigation strategies.
Advantages of Merging Nearshore with Offshore
With the world in a state of virtualization for the foreseeable future, companies need to accept the reality that WFH customer service is here to stay.
One of the most notable advantages of this new reality is the possibility of finding exceptional talent on a global scale. In both Nearshore and offshore settings, agents are no longer tied to brick-and-mortar, resulting in an unprecedented expansion of the talent pool.
When merging teams from both locations and environments, companies not only reduce the risk of a single point of failure, but they also mitigate the risk of geopolitical changes, natural disasters, and the possibility of another global pandemic.
Along with access to substantial volumes of potential employees, flexshoring allows companies to scale up or down rapidly during cyclical hiring seasons, as well as bring in specialized talent for specific tasks, such as customer service delivery in multiple languages. There’s also a sense of internal competition between regions, which builds a vibrant culture that boosts performance from your teams.
Several next-gen flexshorers are also providing solutions beyond customer service, such as product support and digital transformation capabilities, so there’s an opportunity for organizations to leverage the unique skillsets found in both regions, such as robotic process automation Nearshore, and product support offshore. Plus, wages are relatively similar in both regions and can be offset by merging WFH with brick-and-mortar.
The main takeaway here is that all of these benefits can help your business evolve and remain resilient while giving you the power to control performance and cost at every turn.
Flexshoring Challenges and Solutions
The biggest bottleneck in achieving flexshore success is technology—it’s impossible to create a global customer service delivery strategy without the right tools in place to facilitate communication, enhance service delivery, and enable agent monitoring. Furthermore, gathering intelligence and data on your global workforce can become a mammoth task if not handled correctly.
To solve the challenge of technology, organizations need access to agile cloud contact center architecture that can easily manage and reroute volumes, as well as enabling root cause analysis to find and solve any issues in specific locations. When gathering intelligence in a flexshore operation, companies need powerful business and agent intelligence platforms with analytic capabilities to optimally route volume and enhance coaching strategies.
Aside from technology, organizations may find it difficult to sync up operations and create a culture of connectedness across distant regions. Teams that live in different social cultures and work in different environments may clash regularly, so companies need to temper the right balance to keep productivity levels high.
The trick is to take the best practices from each region and combine them into a set of standardized processes, as well as employ collaboration tools that connect teams and cultures across borders. Furthermore, look for providers that use a “Matrix of Excellence” approach to client servicing to ensure there’s always a single point of contact regardless of where your teams are.
Kicking off the Right Flexshoring Strategy
Flexshoring suits several types of organizations, but mainly those that target mass consumers in multiple languages. It’s also a great strategy for large companies with a mix of products and services, businesses that want to undergo a digital transformation project without impacting customer support, or even those who agree that blended, distributed teams are the way of the future.
“2021 will continue to be a fluid year for most businesses and contact volumes will continue to be unpredictable,” said Everise President Dave Palmer. “The companies that have invested in agile home-based talent and technology globally will those that transform their resilience into growth.”
To kick off a fresh flexshoring strategy, organizations should first identify their goals for performance, growth, and cost-effective operations, then match those goals to the right partner—it all comes down to choosing a provider with the capability to meet your business objectives.
Can your outsourcing partner deliver high-performance within both the Nearshore and offshore regions? Does your partner have the capability to provide technology and digital experiences in a globally dispersed environment? Is your partner agile enough to adapt quickly and ensure business continuity in multiple geographies?
By asking the right questions and choosing the right provider, your organization can start rolling out a flexshoring operation that hits your goals and prepares you for any eventuality. After all, as the business world faces unprecedented risks at every turn, only the organizations that prepare and adapt will continue to thrive.