Is your internal team spread too thin?
Looking to optimize resources while reducing costs?
Searching for ways to make your business more productive—and profitable?
If so, Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) might be beneficial for your organization. In this article, we’ll break down six key industries that benefit most from BPO—and how to overcome challenges in BPO for each industry to achieve the greatest benefit.
But first: what exactly is BPO?
BPO stands for Business Process Outsourcing. With BPO, companies will outsource non-critical business workflows or functions to gain flexibility, scalability and additional bandwidth for internal resources to focus on mission-critical projects. As a result, business processes become more efficient and service levels improve, while internal teams are freed up to focus on profitability and growth.
The healthcare industry is one that benefits greatly from business process outsourcing, in part because there’s so many uses for BPO in healthcare. For example, healthcare organizations might outsource non-clinical processes such as:
- Medical answering services
- Patient follow-ups
- Pre-registration for patients
- Managing physician referrals
- Data entry and records processing
- Appointment setting
- Medical coding and billing
- Claims processing and managing insurance processes
This list is non-exhaustive, yet it highlights just how much non-clinical and administrative work goes into running and maintaining healthcare organizations.
Any healthcare provider, leader or admin can tell you that burnout is a major challenge in the healthcare field today. Of course, with burnout comes employee attrition and reduced retention, as well as challenges finding, hiring and maintaining adequate staffing.
BPO is a wide-reaching solution to burnout in healthcare, as outsourcing non-critical tasks can reduce workloads and free up internal resources for more critical (and clinical) work. In doing so, you can reduce burnout among internal staff, thereby improving retention and making staffing easier.
However, outsourcing even non-critical processes can be difficult in healthcare. Not only is healthcare a highly technical industry, with complex customer questions, unique customer journeys and complicated insurance processing workflows, but it’s also a highly-regulated industry.
How Business Process Outsourcing Can Help The Healthcare Industry
Even so, the rewards of BPO in healthcare far outweigh the challenges in finding the right BPO provider. Consider just a few of the benefits BPO could offer your healthcare organization:
- Reduced strain on internal staffing to free up time for critical projects and lower attrition rates
- Improved patient relationships and service
- 24/7 customer service for after-hours or weekend availability
- Professional agents to provide high-quality care and support for patients
- Reduced operational costs to improve hospital budgets and staff benefits
To get the most benefit from your BPO partnership, look for a provider like ROI CX Solutions that is experienced in working with medical clients, maintains a HIPAA certification and has testimonials and proven results from working with healthcare clients.
The insurance industry is a high-touch industry that has to field a disproportionately high number of questions. Given that most Americans have several types of insurance—from life insurance to medical and dental insurance, car insurance, home insurance and more—the average insurance holder is going to have questions several times per year about their plans.
As a result, insurance companies get bogged down in day-to-day customer support tasks—answering customer questions, navigating claims and requests, discussing complicated policies and so on. While customer service is essential, it can create backlogged workflows and reduce internal efficiency, productivity and innovation.
However, outsourcing in the insurance industry can be a challenge as well—with complicated policies, a slew of acronyms and industry jargon and many unique situations and questions from customers, outsourcing requires experienced and highly-trained agents.
How Business Process Outsourcing Can Help The Insurance Industry
Insurance providers frequently find the most benefit from outsourcing after-hours support and customer service through BPO solutions. Partnering with an experienced call center to provide BPO support offers insurance providers:
- improved customer service and extended hours
- increased customer satisfaction and retention
- more affordable call center solutions
- improved response time and reduced backlogs
- increased efficiency and reduced workload on internal staff
As a result, BPO outsourcing doesn’t just improve results for your customers, but it improves results for your company, offering greater retention, loyalty and profitability.
When it comes to retail, customers have high expectations. With the ability to shop 24/7 comes the expectation of 24/7 support, as well as seamless experiences across both online and in-person retail shopping.
As such, supporting a retail brand is getting more complicated. Not only do you need inbound call center agents to manage customer service and support, but you also likely need outbound callers to support business processes, leads, marketing efforts and so on.
Of course, retail brands want to be available whenever and wherever your customers are—but doing so in the modern world is a tall order. In addition, retail generally sees distinct seasonality, with higher call volumes during holiday seasons and perhaps during annual sales. As a result, scaling call center and support staff accordingly can be a major change for retail businesses.
To add to the challenge, retail brands can’t just hire any call center agents and expect them to be up to speed immediately in seasonal rushes—you need providers who get retail and know your brand inside and out. While ROI CX Solutions hires and trains agents to be brand specialists who ensure your customers get the right answers, every time, the same can’t be said for all providers.
How Business Process Outsourcing Can Help The Retail Industry
BPO can provide ample support for retail companies who are looking for access to scalability, customer service expertise and affordability.
For example, ROI CX Solutions offers representatives for retail business process outsourcing that specialize in both customer retention and acquisition. Together, we develop ideal processes and strategies for your ideal customers, then train our agents to become experts on your products and services so they can cater to your client’s preferences and needs.
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With specialized support, you can access flexible teams that are ready to scale up or back based on demand, saving you time and money. Retail businesses commonly outsource customer service, logistics management and data entry tasks—all of which can benefit from outsourcing’s flexibility and scalable solutions.
Ecommerce, like retail, sees high expectations from consumers. Since eCommerce is naturally accessible anytime, customers expect support and service to be accessible on-demand as well. Whether that’s self-service, 24/7 phone lines, or personalized support, eCommerce experiences some of the highest customer expectations.
And eCommerce brands don’t have much room for error either—recent consumer surveys report that 92% of consumers will switch brands after just three or less poor customer experiences. Of course, with the wide range of eCommerce solutions and retailers available, this makes sense. If customers can’t get what they need from your brand, they have dozens of others to choose from.
All of this just means that managing customer expectations and delivering positive experiences is more important than ever.
Even though eCommerce offers the benefit of low overhead and infinite growth and scalability, staffing customer service roles accordingly can be a challenge.
Business process outsourcing can help provide affordability and scalability for customer service—and beyond—for eCommerce brands. By outsourcing non-core processes, you can focus your internal team on core growth and building a stronger brand, product and solution for your customers. For many consumers today, quality of service is just as important as quality of products—in fact, 68% of consumers will pay more for products or services from a company that’s known for great customer service.
How Business Process Outsourcing Can Help The Ecommerce Industry
BPO is often used for customer service and support, but there’s much more to eCommerce BPO than simply answering customer questions. Ecommerce brands working with ROI CX Solutions use BPO to manage:
- inbound customer service
- outbound customer support
- loyalty programs and customer retention
- order taking and return management
- upselling and cross-selling
- and more!
Our clients get to leverage best-in-class technology to support their services. Not only that, but they rest easy knowing their customers are well taken care of, while focusing their efforts on improving their core business. And our services drive tangible results, too—for example, for one eCommerce customer, we achieved a 70% inbound sales conversion rate, the highest they’d ever realized.
Though often overlooked, education organizations need customer service as much as other industries. Students or incoming learners have many questions at every step of the process, from admissions to financial aid, registration, class management and so on.
To add to the challenge, many educational consumers skew younger in age range, which often leads to higher expectations for instant service, seamless support and self-service solutions.
Of course, 24/7 service is difficult to provide when you’re working with an in-house team, as many educational institutions are. The education industry needs affordable and scalable service that can meet students whenever—and wherever—they get stuck.
Further, the education industry, like retail, sees significant variation in demand throughout the year, with the majority of call volume occurring during the beginning of each semester or application period, and hardly any calls over the summer months or other holiday periods. Finally, educational organizations need BPO partnerships that integrate seamlessly with their institution so they can build trust among their prospective and current students.
How Business Process Outsourcing Can Help The Education Industry
BPO for education clients enables you to easily provide 24/7 service at affordable rates. In addition, you can effortlessly scale up and down as seasonality dictates, providing superior service even during your busiest seasons, while saving money by scaling back during slower periods.
BPO can also be used for lead generation. Whether you’re an online learning program, a textbook provider or a large university, every educational institution needs a steady influx of new students. Business process outsourcing can contact and connect with prospective students, field inquiries and deliver warm leads to your admissions teams. Your prospective learners will feel more engaged and supported, and internal teams can spend more time and energy on following up and building relationships with quality leads that drive results.
Law firms and attorneys, like insurance providers, are another industry that handles a large volume of incoming calls. Whether a client is reaching out for updates, prospective clients are calling looking for answers or a partner is calling with case details, law firms have a significant number of both inbound and outbound communication to juggle.
In addition, in the legal industry, most of these questions are complex and highly unique to each case or situation—not something that a basic FAQs page or virtual chatbot can tackle. As such, many law firms hire internal receptionists to field calls. The downside of this solution is that many receptionists don’t always understand legal jargon, or aren’t available after-hours, when many clients are taking care of personal business.
Many aspects of legal business processes—from call answering to data processing and more—are highly technical, not to mention have strict privacy requirements. As a result, many law firms are hesitant to outsource anything.
Finding a BPO provider with the necessary expertise and experience is a huge hurdle for law firms. However, the upfront leg work to find a trustworthy provider can pay dividends for companies in the legal industry. BPO providers who are experienced with legal clients, have PCI and other security and privacy certifications, and highly-trained, professional agents can provide law intake services with data entry and other outbound services for a fraction of the cost of in-house receptionists.
How Business Process Outsourcing Can Help Law Firms
BPO doesn’t just provide law firms with experienced answering services—there are a host of other benefits as well. For example, BPO for law firms can help:
- maintain business continuity. Keep your clients connected even when you’re out or busy with other details.
- restore focus for your attorneys. By outsourcing your call answering and other business processes, you reduce interruptions and tedious tasks for your team, allowing them more time to concentrate on essential tasks.
- reduce costs. A legal call center is almost always cheaper than hiring an in-house receptionist. In addition, legal call centers have more experience with legal questions, closing new leads and other profit-driving opportunities.
- strengthen professionalism. With highly-trained agents experienced with the legal industry, you ensure that your firm maintains its professional quality with every interaction.
How To Pick The Right BPO Partner
Although the benefits of BPO can be huge for many industries, it’s essential to find the right provider to take full advantage of these benefits. When looking for a BPO provider, be sure to look for the following qualities:
- Customizable solutions and flexibility. You want a BPO provider that can scale easily with you as you grow, or as demand ebbs and flows. A provider with flexible, scalable solutions ensures you have a long-term partner who can always meet your needs.
- Good client reviews and testimonials. A strong series of case studies or client testimonials helps ensure your provider can get tangible results for your business—and is an experienced provider who has expertise in your industry.
- Services you need (or will need). The right BPO provider already offers services you currently need, as well as ones you may need in the future. Multilingual agents, omnichannel support, order taking, upselling and more are all add-ons you might want to look for.
- Communication and culture. Does their communication and work culture fit with your own? Though often overlooked, poor culture fit or disorganized communication can be a breaking point in your partnership.
- Professionalism and expertise. Ultimately, you want your BPO partner to feel like an extension of your internal team, not a separate entity. Ensure their agents are professional and experienced with your industry.
If you’re looking for a customer-centric, experienced BPO provider, connect with ROI CX Solutions and see how we can help you achieve your goals. Our customer experiences and BPO services are powered by world-class technology and flexible enough to help you meet your customer’s expectations, no matter what.