Three Services Your Small Business Should Be Outsourcing
By Owen Campbell, Operations Director at Kura, the UK’s largest independent outsourcer of customer service solutions.
Outsourcing is a common practice for many businesses that need an extra helping hand and expertise when it comes to certain business activities – and SMEs are no different. In fact, over one-third of SMEs actually outsource some form of activity.
Owen Campbell, Operations Director at Kura, says: “Any business, whether an established company or a startup just getting into their industry, can benefit from outsourcing. It not only helps manage workloads better, but it can ensure that all businesses have the right expertise and people in place to provide high-quality services. This can be especially useful for SMEs who don’t have the time and resources to create whole teams within their business structure.”
But what can SMEs outsource, and what benefit does it have for their business?
Happy customers are crucial for any business. In fact, according to a survey, the Customer Satisfaction Index sits at 77.7 out of 100, showing a drop in customer satisfaction levels across the year – with five sectors dropping at least one point. The current struggles in customer service could result in the loss of customer loyalty, with more customers wanting to stay with brands they have good experiences with.
So, putting additional effort into your customer service is essential to ensure that your business isn’t falling behind the competition or losing customers. Solutions can include call centre outsourcing, to ensure that you’re managing all calls, even during ramp periods such as Christmas, without delay.
Seasonal demands can put a lot of pressure on any SME. It is important to recognise the uplift in work early and gain the support of a trusted outsourcer during this time. Not only can their workforce help ease some of the stress of the season, but also their expertise can comfortably manage the demands and expectations of customers during this busy period. Finding a partner who are experts in customer experience means that you can meet KPI delivery every time.
Owen says: “For small businesses, managing an influx of calls can be difficult, especially if you don’t have the resources and people in place to manage it. Outsourcing your customer experience activity can not only ensure that you’ve got expertise in place to manage difficult and sensitive conversations with empathy, but a trusted outsourcing partner can also streamline all customer communications using an omnichannel solution to bring together your social media, email, telecommunications, and more. Investing in outsourcing CX experts can improve the quality of your interactions with your customers – even during seasonal demand ramp periods.”
Efficient sales strategies are essential for improving the revenue and growth of your business, and many SMEs will find success in outsourcing to an established sales team. This team can provide the service as a third party, on behalf of your company, without time delay, as there is no need to set up a new sales team, buy equipment, or expand your office space to accommodate this.
Owen says: “An inexperienced sales team can cause more problems for an SME than it is worth, including losing trust from customers. But by investing in an established sales team who can dive deep into your customer base and understand each lead before reaching out, you can rebuild trust. Whether it is a comprehensive inbound team or experts in outbound activity, covering both bases can improve your lead generation and sales techniques. Cold calling is no longer as viable as it once was, so new strategies and technology that lets you know who you’re trying to target are more important than simply getting your voice out there.”
The cost-of-living crisis is having an impact on all of us, from companies to customers, and unpaid bills are likely to become a problem. In fact, just under half of all SMEs (46%) still have unpaid invoices by the end of the 2022/23 financial year. This loss in revenue can not only cause financial difficulties for small businesses but also damage reputation and lead some SMEs (39%) to consider making reductions in order to cope.
With one in three Brits missing at least one payment in 2023, drawing a line between offering your customers the right level of empathy and not putting your business into hardship can be difficult. That is why finding the right support through experienced debt collectors is vital for securing your business’ finances without harming your customer relationships.
Outsourcing your debt collection and payment support can help small businesses have extra security in this financial hardship. Debt collection outsourcers are experienced in managing this difficult time for both businesses and customers, ensuring that you’re not losing customer loyalty during difficult periods while also adding the support your company needs.
Owen says: “Not only can a payment support outsourcer help your business chase missing invoices and get your financials paid, but using software and data analysis, they will be able to better support your customers who might be at risk of debt. This way, your company can avoid the risk of this financial downfall while also supporting and maintaining good customer service.”
Many companies might believe outsourcing is only for larger corporations, but it can actually be incredibly effective for startups and SMEs looking to improve their services or manage their administrative tasks without the additional burden it can have on their in-house teams. If you don’t have the people, time, equipment, or resources, outsourcing can be the solution to accessing the right support and services without the additional time and financial cost.
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