The Trends Of BPO in 2021 & The Future
Of course, we had to kick off the new year by sharing some insight into the top BPO trends we have already pre-empted to pick up in 2021! 🙂
So, what can, or should, you expect?
Let’s dive in…
1. An Increase in Data-Driven Cloud Services
What does this mean?
As the world becomes increasingly more ‘techy’, machine learning and artificial intelligence are getting smarter.
This data is extremely valuable to outsourcing companies and their clients because it helps us better understand what might have been hidden patterns in customer behaviour or trends.
If you know how your customer behaves, you can provide them with a service they want, or better yet, one they really need!
Forbes own research states that at least 77% of outsourcing companies host at least one cloud app.
This figure is predicted to rise this year as more and more people opt to do their shopping online.
At Smiles, we already use many data-driven cloud services to optimize our own customer care and back-office services.
However, with an increase in people spending time online we’re continually steadfast in developing more advanced technology to help us understand, and even predict your customer activity.
2. Leveraging The Power of Social Media
Social giants such as Facebook, Instagram, and even WhatsApp, are all connected these days.
New privacy terms laid out in December 2020 mean they are harnessing more data than ever!
They are no longer just great marketing platforms, they can and should also be used to gauge customer expectations.
Social media is one of the easiest places for customers to go when they want their voices to be heard.
Whether it’s a question, complaint, or awesome review it gives them a platform and they feel seen amongst the many.
More outsourcing companies should offer social media solutions for a holistic approach to customer care.
It not only helps to improve clients customer support, but it also enhances their client’s online presence and community, ultimately leading to an increase in customer retention too.
Facebook in particular is seeing huge trends in a focus on community , groups, and pages.
It’s becoming less and less about the individual and more about the collective.
3. Next Level Automations
Automation is nothing new but in 2021 these trends are set to get even stronger.
Streamlining functioning can improve both speed and performance.
It also frees up time for employees to focus on core tasks that push the business forward, and improve productivity.
Machine learning and artificial intelligence contribute a great deal to improving automation.
For example, knowing what posting or publishing times are likely to get the most engagement, hiding comments with particularly damaging words or phrases, automatic customer service responses and more!
4. Fostering Remote Working Environment
Over the last few years one of the biggest gradual trends has been a shift to remote working.
Slowly but surely people around the world were ditching the four walls of the office where possible.
Of course, last year forced remote working to boom overnight.
Outsourcing providers like ourselves adopted advanced technologies to ensure staff could work efficiently from home while maintaining the highest levels of security.
Cloud storage is part of the equation, along with services such as video conferencing technology, recording transcripts, internet services, etc.
Although at Smiles our teams have largely moved back into our offices (as we believe this to be the best way of working), we have the systems and practices in place to adapt quickly and with a continuity of service, if needed.
Of course, our employee’s safety is our utmost priority. We’ve implemented every preventative and safety measure possible, and we carefully monitor the situation in both our office locations to determine whether or not it is safe enough to work.
Although our teams are back in the office, we protect them by conducting many of our usual face-to-face interviews (for new hires) via online calling systems before inviting them in if they pass.
5. Advanced Security Demands
I touched on this briefly already but the more remote the working environment becomes the greater the need for advanced security becomes!
With security threats getting increasingly complex and prevalent, high-tech security is essential.
Businesses will expect more advanced and customized security solutions from their outsourcing partners.
At Smiles, to minimize the risk of data leaks or theft, our information security strategy crosses both technical security and policy.
● Employee contracts include a zero-tolerance policy on mishandling data
● USB ports on agent workstations are restricted
● Printer access is disabled unless expressly requested and required
● Agents may not bring mobile devices into the office
● Our offices include 24/7 CCTV
● All data is stored centrally in a secure room
● Internet use can be restricted as required
● Our offices are strictly employee only with on-site security and shift managers
● Agents access systems with secure credentials and enforced password complexity/rotation
● Agents must provide a police clearance and 2 professional references
What Top Trends Do You Think We’re Going To See?
Thanks for reading!
If you think we missed anything be sure to let us know in the comments section down below we would love to hear from you. 🙂
If you’re interested in outsourcing aspects of your own business schedule a call with our CEO, Graham Innes today!