Consolidation Opportunity Assessment

Is supporting a diverse customer contact operation requiring more capital, effort and resources than it needs to? Are contact center costs spiraling out of control with no end in sight as mergers and acquisitions grow?

Customer sales and service contact centers have long been recognized as key enablers to an enterprise’s customer retention and revenue growth strategies. In many growth organizations, new contact centers have sprung up for each line of business, operational function or new venture. Often new centers are established with little thought as to their fit and function within the enterprise or without consideration of possible redundancies which may have been eliminated or economies of scale which might have been achieved through integrated planning. The unfortunate result for many companies has been wasted resources and dollars and replicated facilities and technology platforms. Contact Center 411’s Consolidation service offering is a disciplined, systematic approach that allows clients to realize significant operating cost savings in their enterprise contact centers. Typical savings realized in a consolidation program, whether physical or virtual, can range from 10 to 20 percent of a client’s total customer service operating budget.

Contact Center Consolidation focuses on the economies of scale achievable in three primary areas:

  1. Resources: number, salaries, and structure
  2. Facilities: locations, capacity and cost/sq. ft.
  3. Technology: systems, applications and network

The core of the service offering is the Consolidation Opportunity Assessment (COA) where we identify and measure the financial and operating performance levels of clients’ multiple centers versus financial operating benchmarks (e.g. burdened salary per agent, lease rate per square foot, etc.). This assessment yields an objective baseline of clients’ current operating environments and allows us to develop action plans that target personnel resources, potential technology enhancements, and facilities-related issues. We incorporate the financial impacts of these action plans into a consolidation business case that provides the foundation for future initiatives, allowing the client to realistically forecast the financial benefits of the consolidation as well as systematically track and measure the success, in terms of key financial and other metrics, of each initiative associated with the consolidation.

It is important to be specific regarding the difference between operating savings and operational savings. The COA and resulting business case focus on operating costs related to the amount a client is spending for personnel, technology, and facilities. During the assessment, we identify opportunities for savings that can be achieved through a thorough analysis of a client’s contact center locations (Wage arbitrage), physical environment (Real Estate Costs) and pooled resources. These savings, when incorporated with incremental process and productivity operational improvements enabled by standardization and consolidation, establish a powerful business case with significant bottom line impact.

In addition, during the initial phases of the COA, we are generally able to identify short-term operational improvements (“low hanging fruit”) that allow clients to realize operational cost savings immediately. The savings inherent in implementing these “quick-win” opportunities allow clients to offset the investment in the implementation of the full consolidation recommendations defined in the full scale Consolidation Business Case.

Following are our primary areas of focus, including the percentage of cost savings we anticipate deriving in each area and some of the specific areas where the cost savings may be achieved. The range of savings is, of course, proportional to the scope of the contact center operations: The larger the organization, the more locations and the greater the number of agents; the greater percentage of savings that can be anticipated. After all, resource costs represent between 60% and 70% of a typical contact center operations budget.

Consider:

People / Organization 10 to 20% Savings

  • Recruitment, Hiring and Base Salary
  • Attrition and retention costs
  • Resource pooling and span of control
  • Combined hiring profiles and skill requirements
  • Training

Process / Operations Improvements 10 to 15% Savings

  • Productivity standards
  • Erlang C economies
  • Process simplification
  • Workforce management efficiencies
  • Common critical monitoring and reporting metrics
  • Customer segmentation and Enterprise treatment strategies

Technology 5  to 10% Savings*

  • Platform and Network
  • Shared CRM applications
  • Customer self-service applications
  • Improved call routing efficiencies and DRP
  • Optimized common agent desktop tools

Facilities 5 to 9% Savings*

  • Site selection impacts base rate, availability, attraction and retention of skill pools
  • Number of and cost per square foot
  • Consolidated real estate portfolio
  • Layout and design that improves productivity and retention
  • State, County and Municipal incentives


* Net of investment
Our team consists of experts with years of real world and consulting experience as well as a proven track record of consolidation successes. We can help provide the roadmap and laser focus on the economies of scale that a physical or virtual consolidation of contact center operations can deliver for you.

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