Companies who choose to outsource particular functions of their business do so for a couple of key reasons. They are seeking to make efficiency improvements in areas they are not good at, or they are outsourcing so they can focus resources on core areas of their business. Inevitably by outsourcing, a company will expect that a professional specialist will achieve a task more efficiently and effectively than they can, and therefore they’ll expect a cost benefit. In other words, their telemarketing company will need to produce better results at the same cost, or the same results at a lower cost than the company can achieve in-house.
Time versus outcomes
It follows then, that to survive, telemarketing companies have to be good at delivering consistent results for every unit of time billed. Productivity is therefore a key success factor for the telemarketing company. This isn’t about speed, it’s all about an organisation’s ability to use its resources, money, staff hours, and intellectual property in a way that consistently delivers the best outcomes and value for clients buying their service.
The productivity puzzle
Dubbed the productivity puzzle by among others, ex-chancellor George Osborne, productivity has been a problem in the UK economy for many years. The UK economy, like any other, is a system that converts work into the output of goods and services. Productivity measures this rate of conversion. The more goods and services produced per hour worked determines whether living standards rise or fall.
According to management consulting firm McKinsey & Co, the UK stands out as one of the worst productivity performers among its peers. Its absolute level of productivity has persistently ranked toward the bottom of a sample of advanced economies.
Efficiency in telemarketing companies
Hence, the challenge for the telemarketing company, like other outsourcers, is how do you perform well, consistently and measurably, with the least resources or wastage, and without alienating staff or causing burnout. This is about the measure of efficiency, or in the broader sense; productivity – or the yield generated per man hour.
Telemarketing companies understand that to survive, they have to provide a service that works efficiently and effectively. They also have to create an environment with desirable projects, where staff feel valued, stretched, well rewarded, and the work is worthwhile. Working with a family of strong client brands creates pride and ownership, so telemarketing teams are invested in getting the best possible results.
So the answer to the question ‘how does a telemarketing company optimise productivity’ is threefold, good people, effective tools, and meaningful projects.
Quality management systems (QMS) allow companies to break up their processes to put quality checks and control levers in every mission critical point. This means measuring, defining, and managing every dial, decision maker contact, lead, a new name added to the database, and much more. Benchmarking performance patterns then allows quality managers to build processes that optimise each hour’s performance. This information allows us to set soft targets, and create coaching tools, scorecards, and training to support teams towards peak performance. Information systems then tell people how they’re doing against benchmark and their peers. ISO:9001 quality standard accreditation helps Blue Donkey standardise high performance by providing a shared model of excellence that everyone subscribes and contributes to.
Data in b2b telemarketing tends to be carefully profiled too. This means the database will consist of hundreds or thousands of records, rather than tens of thousands. It has to be treated as precious and limited. Therefore every dial has the potential to reach a game-changer prospect and do great things for the caller, the receiver of the call, or the client company commissioning the call. Each dial is carefully placed and the messaging well thought through so your brand is safe, while any potential opportunity is captured, and maximised by a professional who is as good with your messaging as you are.
Effectiveness in telemarketing companies
Agencies like Blue Donkey will be competing against the big call centres for clients. This is a quirky feature of telemarketing companies and the sector in which they operate. It’s quite possible for a tiny agency to win a pitch against a huge centre employing thousands. How? Quite simply by making better calls, having a robust quality management system, and a good portfolio of existing clients. They are essentially more effective at getting a message across in a compelling way, because speaking with a buyer on their level, intelligently, will always, yes absolutely always, do a better job of communicating than a script.
For over 22 years Blue Donkey has been providing outsourced telemarketing for corporates and small businesses alike. We’re small enough to have a boutique model of excellence in the way we design and create campaigns, but big enough and experienced enough to have a well-resourced technology infrastructure, delivering reliable and granular metrics, for every dial or keystroke. Output is measurable and reportable right down to the last few seconds of a client’s project, and we invest heavily in quality management and monitoring systems, as well as sophisticated training functions to sustain our intelligent callers.