Contact Center Vendor Selection Checklist

By Jelani Harper
Updated: September 01, 2011

There are several factors related to the selection process of a contact center vendor that should be evaluated and verified before choosing this type of provider. Some of the more salient of these involving aspects of company culture, industry expertise, objective understanding, and propinquity, have been outlined below.

Industry Expertise

The ideal selection for a contact center vendor is one that has experience and expertise in the specific industry of the enterprise contracting it. One of the foremost means of ascertaining whether a potential provider has such experience is through the procurement of recommendations of other companies who have utilized its service. Be sure and ask for contacts of businesses that operate in a similar industry, and try to determine both the benefits as well as any areas of improvements that can be identified regarding the provider.

Company Culture

It is also essential to glean the particular culture of a contact center vendor to determine whether or not it will be aligned with that of the enterprise seeking its service. The best partnerships with outside providers have similar company cultures or at least involve a vendor that demonstrates a profound understanding of the customer’s culture. To that end, it is typically useful to visit the actual contact center and survey both employees as well as management to gauge factors such as diversity and demeanor of a vendor and its processes, and to identify any potential issues in regards to culture.

Strategic and Objective Understanding

Any relationship with an outside vendor will fail if there is not a synonymous understanding and implementation of an enterprises’ strategic objectives. In order to ensure that a potential vendor fully understands an organization’s processes, it may be necessary to go beyond mere sales associates and speak with upper level management to guarantee that the organization’s goals and objectives will be shared by the vendor. Such conversations will enable enterprises to evaluate the full utility of the contact center as it specifically applies to their businesses.

Propinquity

The most successful vendors are usually located in relatively close proximity to the organization’s contracting their services. A close geographic location assists in the process of enabling the context and expedience of decisions to be handled in a readily available fashion, which benefits both the enterprise as well as the potential contact center vendor.

Advanced Notice of Selection Process

Relationship building with call center providers takes time. The vast majority of the aforementioned factors should ideally be ascertained well in advance of the actual selection process, in order to effectively gauge a potential vendor’s ability to fulfill these requirements in a manner that is unique to the enterprise searching for a provider.
 

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