How much does it cost to outsource your call center in the USA?

How much does it cost to outsource your call center or customer service in the USA?

This is the number one question that we get when a new potential client begins a conversation with us so let’s answer this question.

-The bottom-line answer is that for USA call center outsourcing the range of price will run from $26-$30 for what we would deem to be “regular” call center or customer support.  This is exactly what we charge at Expivia. If you are looking for a more specialized agent and process (Licensed insurance agent, nurse, high tiered tech support) you will be into the $30 and $40 dollar an hour range.  You can get call centers that will bill by the minute, but it will normally still net out to the same dollar amount. 

What do I get for $26-$29?

The answer should be everything.  If it’s not you need to question the call center.  This price is much more than just an associate in a seat.  For this price. you should also be getting all the following included:

  • Advanced Telephony Platform
  • All Telephony Minutes
  • Realtime and daily recap Reporting
  • QA Processes
  • Client Support
  • Middle Management
  • Monitoring Capabilities
  • Workstation (computer, headsets…)
  • Workforce management
  • Voice, chat, email support
  • Dedicated agent

I don’t pay for a supervisor?

For most call center you will not have to pay for a supervisor with one or two caveats.  If your program is very small, say under 10 agents, you may need to pay for a supervisor is you want one dedicated to your program.  If you don’t your supervisor will most likely be shared.

I don’t pay for client support?

No, you should not be.  Some centers try to make clients pay for client services but most do not and you should question your call center partner if they are doing this to you.

Do I have to pay for training?

Yes and No.  All call centers will charge for initial training, and like my call center, we will require this payment up-front.  It is normally done for a smaller fee, anywhere from $20-$24 an hour per rep.  Once the initial class of associates are trained, it is then up to the call center to pay for any attrition training if an associate leaves the program or the company and need to be back-filled.

Now if there is any program expansion with the need for more associates, the client will be billed for that.

Are there setup fees?

Yes, and you need to be careful here.  Some call centers will really go to town on setup fees.  Depending on the size and complexity of the program, you should be ready to pay anywhere from $5000-$25000 for a 10-100 seat program.  If you have a 1000 seat program that you are outsourcing all bets are off and you need to be prepared to pay what is fair to set that up.

IT Setups normally include:

  • CRM Integrations
  • API development
  • VPN setups
  • Routing
  • 800 number setups
  • Basic IVR setup
  • Reporting
  • Dashboards
  • Screen development if needed

After you pay the setup fee, call centers will charge for any major programming that may need to happen in the future.  If you do need extra programming, make sure you get an SOW with the total amount of hours and that both parties sign off on it.  Prices for that will be from $150-$350/hour normally.

I want speech analytics; how much is that?

This is a newer product and I have seen different billing for it.  Most call centers though will add on .25 or .50/hour for the agents that are on Analytics.  When you are negotiating with a call center, I would always ask them to throw it in, after you know their per hour charge.  A lot of them will as a final sweetener to seal the deal for both parties.

If you have any other questions, email me at tlaird@expivia.net or find me on Linkedin at https://www.linkedin.com/in/tlairdexpivia/

Want more call center operations content? Head over to our weekly call center operations podcast “Advice from a Call Center Geek!” at expiviausa.com/call-center-geek-podcast/

Advice from a Call Center Geek is a weekly podcast with a focus on all things call center and contact center. We discuss topics such as call center operations, hiring, culture, technology, and training and have fun doing it! #callcenter #contactcenter #CX #custserv #callcentergeek

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