Top Considerations in Hiring a Service Desk

So, you are now at the point of hiring a service desk to take advantage of the scalability, access to quality staff and increased efficiency an outsourced service desk will provide. Now that you’ve made the decision, there are a few important considerations to help you choose the outsourced partner that will set you on the best course for success.

Experience Matters

As with anything, the experience of the company and its employees makes a big difference. You don’t want to pay to train a company or its reps to do their jobs. You want the benefit of a firm that has been in business for a respectable length of time and has experience providing service desk support. If the company has been in business for a decent amount of time, they are more likely to be credible or they would not still be around. While this is not always the case, it is definitely a helpful indicator.

Bait and Switch

When you engage in the sales process with a new firm, you will often be dealing with more experienced, senior level employees. Companies will put their best foot forward to try to win your business, but all too often after your deal is closed, we see companies doing the bait and switch. You may end up with entry level or junior support staff, which can greatly impact your service levels. While not all staff servicing your account needs to be senior level employees, you should have some assurance of the level of employees that will be handling and overseeing your account on a day-to-day basis.

At a minimum, you want to ensure your service team is capable of supporting level one and level two issues from your customer base.  All level one techs should be expected to actually solve the trouble ticket they receive and the goal should be one call resolution. It is important to screen your potential outsourcers for those kinds of capabilities or your customer experience will suffer.

Modern is a Must

In today’s world, any firm that expects to remain competitive and satisfy its customers must be employing the latest technology and processes in their organization. Make sure the firm is not cutting corners by using outdated technology and outmoded processes for customer support. Modern technology and processes translate into increased efficiency and more user-friendly service for your customers. You and your customers will definitely notice if it’s lacking.

Setting the Bar

Understanding how your company’s brand and quality standards will be upheld should be part of the outsourcer’s onboarding process. This will help ensure transparency and aid in developing a successful partnership between your companies. Will the outsourcer spend time in your environment reviewing your specific internal training program to ensure those standards are completely understood and translated to the team working on the account?

Does the outsourcer also have defined service standards? It’s important that both the outsourcer and you understand the typical standards for service. Specific SLAs will typically be defined as part of the sales or discovery process depending on your project and needs, but key factors should include:

  • Service availability
  • Certification/training path
  • Average wait times
  • Average number of calls to resolution
  • Escalation process

Got Results?

Another way to determine credibility is to ask for references and results. Make sure the company has experience delivering real results for their customers. Do they have testimonials and case studies available from projects they have worked on? If they can’t give you specific results (many times customer data/results are confidential), they should be able to provide you with their customer retention rates and references.

Once you are a customer, how will the outsourcer measure and share results with you? Do you have access to centralized reports and dashboards? How are calls and standards being measured? How frequently are these results communicated with you? All this is critical determining if the program is a success or where adjustments need to be made.

Although there are many other considerations, the items mentioned above should go a long way in helping you find the appropriate partner to achieve success for your outsourced service desk program.

If you are interested in finding out more about Valor Global and our service desk outsourcing programs, please contact me today and I’ll be happy to share our experience, standards and results with you.

Ian Bellais

VP Strategic Development
Linked In Profile

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