Southeast Asian tech startups are attracting attention for all the right reasons. Global markets cannot get enough of the innovative technological solutions coming from the region. However, no matter how outstanding the solution, some products never achieve international acclaim because businesses need to scale their efforts more quickly.
In answer to this issue, Support-as-a-Service companies like have been developing flexible team structures and, in some cases, chatbot services to help startups scale up more effectively.
Are these solutions the best option for your business? Read on to learn more about the pros and cons when you outsource customer support.
The Advantages of Outsourcing Customer Support
There are several advantages to outsourcing customer support. These include:
- Cost-effectiveness: Outsourcing customer support is more cost-effective than hiring and training a team in-house, especially for startups with limited resources.
- Scalability: Outsourcing allows startups to scale their operations quickly and efficiently as their customer base grows.
- Access to expertise: Outsourced customer support providers employ teams of experienced professionals who can handle a wide range of customer inquiries and issues.
- Flexibility: Outsourcing gives startups more flexible support hours and multilingual language support.
- Better focus: Outsourcing support allows startups to focus on their core business and product development rather than diverting much-needed resources.
The Disadvantages of Outsourcing Customer Support
Outsourcing is a practical option, but it won’t suit every firm. The disadvantages include the following:
- Quality control is out of your hands: It can be challenging to ensure that the quality of customer support provided by outsourced providers meets the standards of the startup.
- Communication issues: Communication with large support providers can be difficult, leading to misunderstandings and delays in resolving customer issues.
- Loss of control: You will have input rather than complete control over certain aspects of the customer support process.
- Cultural and language barriers: Outsourcing customer support to providers in other countries can lead to cultural and language barriers that can negatively impact the customer experience.
- Dependence on the provider: Startups may become overly dependent on the outsourced customer support provider, which can be a misstep if the provider fails to deliver the expected service.
How to Maximize the Benefits and Avoid the Potential Pitfalls
Success here depends on how willing you are to perform due diligence. There are several outstanding outsourcing companies, but it may take some research to find the best fit for you.
The more time you put in upfront, the better your results will be. Finding the right partner in this is much like finding a business partner. First, you must feel each other out and ensure you are a good fit.
Here are some tips to get you started.
What services do you need, and what are your expectations?
Clearly define the services you need and your expectations to narrow the field. Can the potential firms offer everything you need? How will they meet your expectations? Can you monitor calls? What feedback will they provide?
Performing this exercise early on also allows you to assess how realistic those expectations are.
What experience does the firm have, and what is its history?
Does the company currently represent, or has it ever represented, firms like yours? Is it a new company, or does it have an established track record? Look for recent start dates, frequent name changes, or regular rebranding. These may all be red flags.
How attentive is the sales team?
By this, we mean, how much interest have they taken in understanding your business and product? If they’ve barely asked how you operate, how can they offer you the right solution?
Outsourcing is a good solution for a tech startup with a limited budget because it provides valuable resources at a reasonable price. However, companies should view this as a partnership and choose the outsourcing provider who will represent them with care. The effort is worthwhile when it comes to the potential for business growth.