Seasonal Outsourcing Preparation Tips
Many Business Process Outsourcing, or BPO, companies are flexible and adjust their services to fit their clients’ needs. There are some industries that have peak seasons then slow down drastically. The beauty of outsourcing is you can do it as little or as much as you need. There’s a reason the BPO industry is expected to grow by $108.3 billion dollars. It helps businesses run effectively and succeed.
If you are a business owner who operates a seasonal business, you know about the increased and decreased demand. For a few months, you are so busy you can barely keep up with the demand. And then, suddenly, business slows down to what seems like a screeching halt. The key is to expect this outcome and prepare for it.
Hiring a BPO company will be your lifesaver and help you through your super busy times. A BPO company will tackle tasks like your front and back-office needs to successfully run your business through busy times. They also do graphic design and website and app development for your marketing needs. They will be your right-hand man.
The best thing about outsourcing is the flexibility of it. Most BPO companies already have the experts, infrastructure, and software to quickly take on any tasks you need help with, so there won’t be any lag in service.
Benefits of Outsourcing
- No need to hire more employees that you will need to pay year-round, including during your off-season
- Lower overhead costs
- Accomplishing tasks at a lower cost
- Increased productivity
Exceptional customer service is key to running a good business. When you provide good service to your customers, they will be loyal to your business and brand, which makes them come back to purchase again and refer others. It’s an excellent way to scale your business. Outsourcing your customer service, especially during your peak season, will ensure your customers get top-notch service by a trained and experienced team in providing the service.
When you outsource, you can be more productive.
There are a ton of advantages to running a seasonal business. Some are:
- Better scheduling flexibility
- Improved work-life balance
- Breaks in the off-season for strategic planning and catch up work
- Creative stimulation
- Advanced preparation capability
Having slower seasons frees you from dealing with the day-to-day daily rush and allows you to focus instead on:
- Strategic planning
- Putting together an effective marketing strategy
- Catching up with the fun paperwork you’ve put off
- Networking with vendors, referral sources, and trade associations
How can your seasonal business survive? Here’s what successfully surviving the storm looks like.
Having a Plan is a Must
If you don’t have a plan, your ship might just sink during your peak season. Planning ahead of time is key to surviving the storm. This is a good storm, though, the best kind of storm, where it’s raining cold, hard cash.
If you’re running a seasonal business, you should have a good idea of the times you will be the busiest and need additional help. Have your outsource team in place well ahead of that time. Decide which tasks you will outsource and which you will manage yourself or with the in-house team you already have without sacrificing the service quality.
You don’t want your peak season to cause you to provide poor service where you’re losing your loyal customers and getting a bad reputation for your business with negative reviews and word of mouth. So have a plan and be prepared, so you provide amazing service that makes your customers happy and loyal to you and refer others.
Onboarding Your Outsourcing Team
Having the right team is the first step. Then you will need to delegate the tasks you want them to take on for you and give them some insights. They should know about your business goals, values, and culture. This is especially important when you’re outsourcing your customer service. You want to make sure they have the capabilities and the manpower to fulfill your needs. Provide them with a list of questions and answers that may come up. Really give as much data as you can so when your peak season hits, you can be sure they have things handled for you so you could focus on your core tasks.
When your peak season starts, your outsourced team should already be trained and ready when you say go. You should consult with the outsource company a few months in advance so they’re fully prepared to handle the tasks and processes you plan to outsource.
Providing your agents with a full view of your business and processes will help them provide top-notch service to your customers. Having effective ways to solve your customers’ queries is vital during your peak seasons; even though you’re extremely busy, your customers will be looking for quick and easy answers.
If you make customers wait during your peak season, they will quickly go to your competition. It’s vital to be available and respond quickly to your customer’s queries.
Outsourcing your customer service, emails, and social media is a great way to ensure top-notch service and not lose a customer because you are too busy at that time. Your outsourced team will respond to queries, book appointments, handle your customer’s questions and concerns.
Outsourcing these services cost less than you think, and they typically help you scale your business and take it to the next level. Having the outsourced team available for your customers 24/7 will help you make the most of your prime season. Your prospects and customers will have round-the-clock agents available to answer questions, concerns and book appointments for you.
The outsourced team could also do your order and data entry to ensure you are ready to be productive when you are on.
To make the most of your peak season, you will need to learn to prioritize. What tasks should you tackle yourself, and what tasks should you outsource? Focusing on the revenue-producing tasks would be a good place to start. The tasks that you’re not the best at or don’t really produce immediate revenue should be the ones that you should consider outsourcing, especially during your peak season.
Your peak season is the time you will make the most of the majority of your revenue, so make the most of it. When you outsource your non-revenue producing tasks, you could focus on your core business and increasing revenue.
Some common tasks that are outsourced are:
- Customer service
- Call center
- Data enter
- Order entry
- Graphic design
- Website and app development
- Social Media
- IT support
During these peak times, your customer experience may not be up to expectations if you’re not prepared. If you are expecting a delay due to high demand, it could affect your customers’ experience. A positive experience and exceptional service are what will help scale your business through your loyal customers. Your loyal customers help pull you through your non-peak seasons, so it’s super important to make sure your customers always get the best service without fail, even during your busiest times.
You can outsource as little or as much as you want or need. It depends on your business’s needs, and that’s the beauty of outsourcing. Prepping and planning ahead of your peak season will help your season run more productive and profitable.
Use your off-season to handle tasks that you have been putting off and things that will help you prepare to make a killing during your busy season. Your peak season is when you will make the most money, so make the most of it. Outsourcing the tasks that will help you be the most predictable will help you bring in the most revenue, and your customers will have an overall more pleasant buying experience.
Remember you want to ensure you provide exceptional service to your customers even during your busy times to gain loyal customers that will carry you through the slow times coming back to you for more products or services and refer their friends and family to you. Don’t let poor service during your super busy times damage your business name and brand with bad reviews.
Your business is most likely your pride and dream, so plan and prepare to crush your competition. Call Awesome CX to help you provide exceptional customer service and take your business to the next level!