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Monday, March 10, 2014

Virtual call centers: Increase productivity while saving money

Advantages of virtual call centers
Virtual call centers can operate 24/7
By Lisa Coleman

The business world has evolved in ways that wouldn't have even seemed possible only a few decades ago. From being able to access information from anywhere in the world to pinpoint marketing through social media, the abundance of advancements has literally changed the way the world works. One of the greatest advancements, though, is that of the virtual call center.

Just about every business owner knows the typical benefits of these virtual centers, such as providing constant customer support, but there are actually numerous benefits that increase a company's productivity while simultaneously saving it money. 


Save more than with a centralized location 

One of the greatest ways that virtual call centers cut down on costs is through eliminating the necessity of a centralized call center.  Large centralized centers all have one thing in common:  huge resources go towards providing administration and coordination. Luckily, a virtual call center eliminates the need for these costly necessities. 
In addition, employees and contracted workers can also work from home through the use of some virtual call centers. This will definitely cut down on administrative costs since it will be employees' own electricity and other utilities running while they're on the clock.

Utilize international toll free numbers

Another great benefit of virtual call centers is the fact that they can utilize the service for obtaining an international toll free number (ITFN.) This will allow international customers and potential customers to easily get in contact with a company. In fact, since ITFN are country specific, consumers in each country where the numbers are utilized will immediately recognize them as toll free numbers.
The trick to utilizing these numbers is finding the right company to provide them. Some companies, such as Avoxi, actually offer several virtual call center services . This means the company can seamlessly integrate the use of Avoxi ITFN, and this equates to cost savings. Add this to the fact that the same workers who answer domestic lines can then answer international calls, and the productivity gotten out of any single employee is bound to go up.  

Increase in-office productivity

Maybe one of the best ways that virtual call centers increase productivity and save money is by allowing in-store employees to do the jobs that they were hired for. Regardless of whether a company is in the business of delivering newspapers or baking cakes, productivity quickly drops when essential employees have to stop what they're doing, answer the phone and discuss issues with customers.

Even if an employee only spends five minutes every hour on the phone, this equates to 40 minutes of nonproductive time during an eight-hour work day. Over a week, this is more than three hours, and even new business owners recognize this is a waste of productivity and money

Back up plan for emergencies

The non-centralized nature of virtual call centers, as mentioned, make it much more affordable to run a customer service line. On top of this, however, they allow for emergency responsiveness. Having a company's only call center in one building means that any disaster, whether natural or man-made, can take down the entire company's support line.
With a virtual call center, however, other employees can quickly begin working in areas that haven't been affected. In a world where consumers expect to reach customer service during just about every waking hour, this small benefit can go a long way in outpacing the competition and turning higher profits. 

While there are countless technologies out there that can save a business owner money, the virtual call center is undoubtedly within the top five. The possibilities of using these virtual centers, such as reaching people across the world and even avoiding time-consuming commutes, make them one of the most utilized tools in the modern business world, and as business owners continue to recognize the numerous benefits related to them, there's no doubt that virtual call centers will experience continued growth.

About the author: Formerly in business management, and as a owner herself, Lisa Coleman understands the importance of saving on such services as a call center while increasing the company's productivity and profit margin. She recently researched the services of Avoxi ITFN to help her complete this article.

Image license: US-PD