We came across an interesting perspective from Canstar Blue’s editor and consumer affairs journalist, Simon Downes. In the article: “The energy companies with Australian and overseas call centres”, Mr. Downes explores which Australians energy players have an onshore contact centre and who has an offshore service offering.
He weighs up the pros and cons of both and boils down to four factors: cost, access, service and location. His article reflects on budget, business practices and goals to determine whether an onshore or offshore contact centre better suits energy customer’s service needs.
As a business who operates a native Australian contact centre, when it comes to price we cannot compete with an offshore offering. But that being said, when clients ask us “What’s your point of difference?” Outside of our technical infrastructure our answer is location, location, location.
Everyone knows that this saying is synonymous with real estate, but the same runs true when running an Australian contact centre. Offshore contact centres may have the resources to run large 24/7 customer service departments within an economy of scale, but they don’t have the boots-on-the-ground perspective of a native contact centre.
Offshore contact centres have the skills and capabilities to understand product benefits and FAQs but being a local business we’re able to deeply understand our customers’ preferences, which in turn gives us an edge in satisfying the specific demands of the local market. We believe that capitalising on local knowledge is one of the best ways for local contact centres to level the playing field. Given our geography, we have the luxury of being market-responsive and thereby can immediately respond to changes in their environment, while staying close to customer needs and avoid making reactionary decisions. Our practical application of local knowledge, insights and information enables us to react and respond to real-world situations.
Successful customer service is all about building lasting relationships between you and your customers & prospective customers. These relationships — these stories between people — are critical to long-term dedicated engagements. In our world of increased automation and digitisation, people still like to count on a person to explain what it means to them and their bottom line. Simon’s article is a well-balanced article and reminds us of the importance of a human connection will never go away and leads us to ponder on “how best can we calculate the timeless value of the human connection?”