Guatemala’s Bilingual English Spanish Call Centers – GuateCall

Guatemala’s Bilingual English Spanish Call Centers – GuateCall

News

GuateCall has built a reputation of delivering high end bilingual English Spanish call center and BPO services from Guatemala, Central America. The Multi channel services offered include but are not limited to phone, email, online chat and social media response. GuateCall offers its services to companies in the United States, Canada as well as throughout Latin America. The key to GuateCall’s success is its ability to become an extension of the brand it represents and instilling a can do attitude within the culture of the company. This helps build a great customer experience for both the end consumer as well as the outsourcing client.

GuateCall is located just a short 3 hour flight from Multiple destinations in the United States, such as Miami, Houston, Dallas, Los Angeles, Newark and Atlanta. This major convenience allows for more face to face contact opportunities with our clients.  With its beautiful scenery and friendly people, Guatemala is an ideal destination to mix both business and pleasure.

Guatemala is a major player in the contact center space and provides contact center support to many of the top Fortune 500 and 100 companies in the U.S.  This leads to a tremendous pool of qualified, well versed employees in all ranges of work from inbound customer service, click to chat services as well as email response and all types of back office work.  Needless to say, at GuateCall, we target the top 20 percent of the contact center workforce in Guatemala. This gives us access to a well versed, highly tenured and skilled staff. Since GuateCall is not a public company, as most of the call centers in Guatemala are, we have the ability to cut a lot of the fat from our competitors prices and offer the highest standards at a fair price.

Another great benefit to the bilingual Guatemalan call center agent is their accent neutrality. It’s a given that we employ agents that are easily understood in English, but did you know that Guatemala is famous for its accent neutral Spanish? No wonder learning Spanish in Guatemala has become such a hot spot for many tourists. Our bilingual agents can help your business tap the $1.2 trillion U.S. Hispanic consumer market by being able to communicate with your clients not only with an easily understood Spanish accent but by connecting with your clients via the same mentality and culture. You don’t need to be limited by the staff and space you have at your current location. Our contact center outsourcing solutions enables your business to partner with a preferred contact center that has consistently out performed our customers’ current in house and out sourced solutions across multiple platforms.

Isn’t it about time you learned more?

This article was written by Perry Silber, COO of GuateCall. GuateCall is a Nearshore contact center provider of multi-channel bilingual English and Spanish services located In Guatemala, Central America. Whether through voice or chat, we can provide superior services to your organization. If you would like to learn more about GuateCall and Call Center services in Latin America, please reach out to me at 713-474-2222 or by e-mail perry@guatecall.com.

 

Belief in the Concept!

Belief in the Concept!

News

In the previous post we spoke about how a contact center interaction can essentially make or break relationships with customers and/or potential prospects.  We spoke about how many call centers whether on shore, near shore or off shore need to improve their game both through infrastructure as well as processes and personnel.

We touched on the concept that millennials working in call centers today are feeling the pressure of management on one side and customers on the other.  They are looking to earn an honest living and are looking to do just enough to maintain their position and earn a paycheck.

Being that these representatives are the face of the company, we surely expect maximum effort and genuine desire from our agents on every contact whether by phone, chat or email.  So how can we achieve this ideal?  How do we motivate the age group that seems to be unmotivated?

At GuateCall, our Central American contact center in Guatemala, we believe that our people need to be inspired and motivated by a higher purpose.  A higher paycheck is obviously a great place to start and the bigger the pay the more motivation it brings. The question becomes is it the sustainable type of motivation that looks to benefit, not just the “I”, but our customer and our customer’s customer?

We found that a key element in meeting and exceeding our customer’s expectations is by applying the three Beliefs. These beliefs are at the core of our training and are constantly referred to throughout the call center.  They have become part of the culture of our company.

The Three Beliefs are:

–Belief in the Concept

-Belief in the System

-Belief in Yourself

Today we will be discussing the first belief, Belief in the Concept. A typical customer trains our trainers on their company, what they do, how they do it, how long they’ve been doing it and all their systems and processes.  These trainings are obviously a key to understanding our customer’s needs and how to accomplish the tasks necessary.   When these trainings are completed and we establish GuateCall’s trainings to our employees, we have our trainers and managers look at the customer and figure out the “why”.  The “why” this company is needed and what purpose do they serve?  How they benefit the life of their customers and what makes them a “needed” part of the customer’s life?

Once this is figured out, sometimes it could be a bit challenging ;-), we apply these ideas to our training and our Quality Assurance. We also create interactive training sessions that allow our trainees as well as our seasoned agents to come up with their own ideas as to why this company is needed by their clients. They also come up with new benefits that maybe have not been thought of before. We then consistently remind our team about them.  These reminders could come from a team lead mentioning it on the floor, a QA analyst messaging the team or just a quick who has a new benefit they’d like to share with the team message. (Many times those get rewarded with a treat or a round of applause.)

It’s crucial to get a strong buy in from the agents about who they represent and their importance to society.  The key to making this a core belief for the agent is the consistency in which it is discussed.  All ideas are great, but could be easily put in the back of the agents mind if not brought up consistently.

Our next Belief system is the Belief in the System.  This will be discussed in a future post so please look for it on www.guatecall.com .

 

This article was written by Perry Silber, COO of GuateCall. GuateCall is a Near-shore contact center provider of multi-channel bilingual English and Spanish services located In Guatemala, Central America. Whether through voice or chat, we can provide superior services to your organization. If you would like to learn more about GuateCall and Call Center services in Latin America, please reach out to me at 713-474-2222 or by e-mail perry@guatecall.com.

 

 

 

It’s Not The Call Center – It’s The Company

It’s Not The Call Center – It’s The Company

News

Companies are spending lots of time and money trying to increase customer engagement and sales.  There are new roles, departments, endless meetings.  There are new tools, new metrics, gamification, QA structures, bonuses, Multi-lingual service. The list goes on and on.

Yet with all of that, customers are generally dissatisfied with the service they receive when reaching out to companies via phone or chat.  More than that, customer service representatives are generally just as excited to give exceptional service as the client is to reach out to the company (a bit of sarcasm).

So why is this the case?  First thing that comes to my mind is Classical conditioning, think Pavlov’s dogs.  If you’re not familiar with this term, look up Pavlov’s dogs on the internet.  It’s a study done in the late 1800s by a Russian physiologist named Ivan Pavlov. (Pause here and read up on it if you don’t already know.) Customers today are conditioned to assume they will receive an uninterested, unknowledgeable, scripted customer service representative on the phone or web-chat and the customer service agent is assuming they will get more complaints, more issues and generally just wants to do good enough to hit his metrics, get good QA scores and make a living.

So what is a business to do?  How do we break this cycle?

From a call center operations perspective it’s nice to think that the reason that people don’t do what you need them to do, or conform to your standards, or make good choices is simply that they don’t know enough.  If the problem is a lack of knowledge than its easy to give more training, give them a couple of tests to make sure they got it and you’re good to go.

What about those dreaded employees who constantly show up a few minutes late to their station to log in? Oh, that’s easy you say. Just let them know that being late isn’t allowed.  Give a DP. Threaten to fire them if this happens. It tends to fix the issue.

The thing is all these and more are symptoms of a bigger issue. Your reps most likely view their job as a temporary necessity.  They want to do what is expected and get paid.  They don’t necessarily care about the same things that the company cares about and the reason they don’t care isn’t that they don’t know what you know or can’t figure out how to show up to work five minutes earlier.

The challenge for a company is to understand their call center IS their touch-point with the customer.  It is the key to customer experience and must be treated, not as a necessary evil that constantly gets budget cuts, but as a marketing opportunity that can be utilized to increase company revenue and customer satisfaction.

A great way to start making a change is to educate our people about our belief systems.  What is it that we care about as a company? What DRIVES us, what’s our PURPOSE  and WHY it matters.  This coupled with great training, good pay, fun atmosphere and a SINCERE caring for our people, not only in words but by action, will help drive a change in the culture of the contact center. Invest in the contact center and watch a truly measurable difference occur.  Not in your KPI’s, but  in your company’s bottom line.

This article was written by Perry Silber, COO of GuateCall. GuateCall is a Near-shore contact center provider of multi-channel bilingual English / Spanish services located In Guatemala, Central America. If you would like to learn more about GuateCall, please reach out to me at 713-474-2222  or by e-mail perry@guatecall.com

The Best Marketing Strategy you already have –  Customer Care!

The Best Marketing Strategy you already have – Customer Care!

Uncategorized

What are we willing to spend to get customer interaction on social media?  What about great feedback?  Even more so, what about a customer referral to not one, not two but a group of friends?

Now consider that these questions are not only a Marketing department conversation.  They hit at the heart of what progressive companies should be speaking about at their Customer service and Sales department meetings as well.

We are all aware of the power of good marketing.  Heck, we’re all consumers and can relate to how a good marketing effort drives our desires.  It brings us, as customers, to the company.  The thing is, it just brings us there, it doesn’t engage us once we’re there and it surely doesn’t keep us shopping or referring others.

For all that brands, and their marketing departments, in particular, talk about customer relationships, the relationship that counts the most for consumers themselves is still that great interaction that can only exist between them and a real person that’s friendly and knowledgeable. Chances are that person is a customer service representative.  We need to make a connection with our customers, to interact with them on their level.  We must listen to what customers are saying and be in tune with what they are not saying.  Whether speaking to a customer service rep on the phone or chatting via web or on social media, a great interaction with a customer or prospect is the opportunity companies should be embracing.

Human interactions — especially in the age of online shopping and self-service are what your customers will remember and what they’ll talk about, perhaps very publicly. So, from a marketing standpoint, the quality of those interactions is enormously significant.  I’m always reminded that it takes 10 positive interactions to erase 1 negative experience.  How scary are those numbers to companies solely focused on KPI’s and cost reductions?

Marketing departments spend significant resources to engage perspective consumers and re-enforce positive messages to existing clients.  It is critical that companies invest in customer service agents, or whatever buzz word they want to label them as, and recognize that these are the people who will ultimately shape the experience and image your company has with its clients.

This article was written by Perry Silber, COO of GuateCall. GuateCall is a Near-shore contact center provider of multi-channel bilingual services located In Guatemala, Central America. If you would like to learn more about GuateCall, please reach out to me at 713-474-2222 or by e-mail perry@guatecall.com.

10 Leadership Quotes in Our Customer Service Training!

10 Leadership Quotes in Our Customer Service Training!

Inspiration

At Guatecall, we pride ourselves on our constant training of team leadership and therefore resulting high quality of customer service that we provide. Here are some quotes that we enjoy and we hope you enjoy them too!

1: “If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.”
-John Quincy Adams

2: “Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.”
-Steve Jobs, Apple co-founder

3: “Do not follow where the path may lead. Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.”
-Ralph Waldo Emerson

4:“The true mark of a leader is the willingness to stick with a bold course of action — an unconventional business strategy, a unique product-development roadmap, a controversial marketing campaign — even as the rest of the world wonders why you’re not marching in step with the status quo. In other words, real leaders are happy to zig while others zag. They understand that in an era of hyper-competition and non-stop disruption, the only way to stand out from the crowd is to stand for something special.”
-Bill Taylor, from article “Do You Pass the Leadership Test?”

5: “Leaders instill in their people a hope for success and a belief in themselves. Positive leaders empower people to accomplish their goals.”
-Unknown

6: “The very essence of leadership is that you have to have vision. You can’t blow an uncertain trumpet.”
-Theodore M. Hesburgh

7: “Leadership and learning are indispensable to each other.”
-John F. Kennedy

8: “A good objective of leadership is to help those who are doing poorly to do well and to help those who are doing well to do even better.”
-Jim Rohn

9: “The single biggest way to impact an organization is to focus on leadership development. There is almost no limit to the potential of an organization that recruits good people, raises them up as leaders and continually develops them.”
-John Maxwell

10: “The pessimist complains about the wind. The optimist expects it to change. The leader adjusts the sails.”
-John Maxwell

Outsourcing Customer Service to Latin America

Outsourcing Customer Service to Latin America

Inspiration News

Outsourcing customer service is one of the most crucial parts of any business.  With today’s competitive business environment and more educated customers as well as the ease of finding information about products and companies, the key differentiation between one company and another is the customer experience and interaction with its clients. Whether it’s through voice, web chat, email or social media interaction, customer experience is the most important element in the success or failure of a company. This is why it is so important to have the best possible relationship with your customer experience outsource provider.

The management of your company and the outsourcing call center must be on the same wave length and become an extension of the business. Good customer service can often be the key to increased sales, customer satisfaction, customer retention and brand reputation.

On the other hand, poor customer service or for that matter even marginal or inconsistent customer service through all the different channels at the customer’s disposal often leads to unhappy customers, diminished brand reputation, loss of customers and poor sales. For these reasons alone, whenever a company decides to outsource their customer service, they need to partner with a provider that will make their company’s customers a top priority.

There are some basic guidelines when searching for a call center:
Credibility:
Credibility matters when a business is entrusting another business with an important task. For this reason, see how long the company has been in the outsourcing business.
Also ask for some client testimonials and recommendations as well as from industry experts.

Skills:
What is the English fluency of the call center’s existing agents?  Since bilingual services are so important for the U.S. market today, do the agents speak Spanish as well?  What is the accent level like?  Spanish accents are also different from country to country.  Try to pick a country that has a neutral accent.  Guatemala, in Central America, is known as a top location for neutral bilingual accents.

Customer service skills need agents that are customer centric by nature.  Some key characteristics are being humble, polite and great listeners.  Contact center reps who are outside of the box thinkers and can come up with creative solutions are always a benefit and the ability to create first call resolutions using all the skill sets above is of key importance to not only the customer experience but controlling the costs of the company.

Location:
Geographical Advantage: If the BPO or contact center is located in time zones that are 7-12 hours difference from the location of the company it is serving, then there is less opportunity to solve management concerns on the fly.  Most top level executives and management work during the day shift so there is a clear need to be located either in the U.S., Canada or for a cost saving and bilingual Spanish support, near shore in Latin America.

Due to the time zone similarity and lower price structure, Latin American and especially Central American call centers have become a popular destination for high level customer service.

Cultural Similarity – Customer service is all about dealing with people. Having a positive customer experience with people becomes much easier when both the customer and the agent are on the same wavelength.  If a customer is looking for items, for example, that just came out that is all the rage, the customer service rep should be on top of those trends and point the customer in the right direction.

Pricing: 
Last but definitely not least, pricing plays a key role in customer service.  There is a need to balance budget with a high a level of customer service and experience.  Many U.S. and Canadian companies are finding that Central America offers a great balance of a highly skilled bilingual workforce coupled with a more cost efficient pricing structure than their local outsource providers.

A Shameless Plug:
If you are looking for a higher quality contact center with a strong focus on the customer relationship, strong training principles and a highly interactive and dedicated management and staff located in Guatemala, Central America, look no further than GuateCall.

We are an American managed BPO and contact center that provides Superior Services.
We believe that every point of contact, from our employees, to our customers and their customers, is an opportunity to make a positive impact on people’s lives.  We work as a seamless extension of your team by integrating our services and management to work hand-in-hand with yours, at every point of contact.

-Our employees become your brand advocates
-Our management team looks for ways to benefit the customer
-Our environment is conducive to happy and lateral-thinking employees

 

This article was written by Perry Silber, COO of GuateCall. GuateCall is a Nearshore contact center provider of multi-channel bilingual services located In Guatemala, Central America. If you would like to learn more about GuateCall, please reach out to me at 713-474-2222 Ext 116 or by e-mail.

Latin America- Fastest Growing Outsourcing Destination

Latin America- Fastest Growing Outsourcing Destination

Inspiration News

With demand for a better customer service experience at an all time high, companies are finding the need to outsource more of their multi channel customer services to contact centers that have the experience necessary to handle the heightened demand of today’s customers.

The global market for outsourcing is rapidly expanding and near shore locations such as Latin America and specifically Central America have become a go-to area for outsourcing services such as Voice, Email and Chat.

Guatemala and specifically Guatemala City, with its advanced technology and highly skilled and educated workforce, has become a go-to destination for some of the top companies in the United States and Canada.

Major outsources are servicing the American as well as Canadian markets and now are expanding to the European markets.  Telus, EGS, Allied Global, Xerox, Genpact, Capgemini, 247 Customer &  Intouch are some of the bigger players in the Guatemalan market today.

GuateCall, a boutique contact center also located in Guatemala City, is uniquely situated in this Central American market and offers companies looking for a higher end customer service experience at an affordable price an opportunity to outsource services to a nearshore location.

There are some major overall benefits when outsourcing to Latin America and specifically Guatemala, Central America.

  • Guatemalan people are known for their customer service skills and that mentality is a major benefit when the needs for quality customer service experiences is at an all time high.
  • Guatemala has a very neutral accent so customer service representatives are much easier to understand and speak with than Indian or other call Centers in the industry.
  • Guatemala not only has a clearer accent in English but is known to have the most neutral accent Spanish in Central America as well. This allows bilingual conversation to flow smoothly no matter which region a Hispanic customer is calling from.
  • The Geographic proximity to the United States and Canada is a great benefit for Latin American outsourcing. Guatemala is Central time zone located and just a short flight for multiple cities in the U.S.

If your customer service experience is in need of some extra help and are looking to increase customer loyalty, referral business and retention of clients in this highly competitive marketplace, feel free to reach out to us to learn how customer service from GuateCall can differentiate your company from its competitors at an affordable price!

 

This article was written by Perry Silber, COO of GuateCall.  GuateCall is a contact center in nearshore Latin American/ Central America. Our call center is a provider of multi-channel bilingual English and Spanish services located In Guatemala. If you would like to learn more about GuateCall and its services in voice, chat or email in both English and Spanish, pleas reach out to me at 713-474-2222 Ext 116 or by e-mail.

The Life of the Customer

The Life of the Customer

Inspiration News

Companies are realizing that customer satisfaction is a key to growing their business. With the cost of gaining a new customer on the rise and with the many options customers have of where to spend their hard earned money, emphasis is being placed on increasing the customer experience at every touch point. Multi channel service is growing rapidly via phone, email, chat, social media and face to face interactions.

Within these channels, many companies have formed teams of specialists to service the customer to the best of their abilities. Even specialized teams within teams are created, ie sales teams, retention teams, escalation teams, dispatch teams, follow up and survey teams and the list goes on. The purpose of each is to create and maintain a happy customer who will continue to do business with the brand and create future referrals.

Company management will often be the first to tell you that they are all about customer satisfaction. In the quest to increase customer satisfaction many have been measuring the quality of each interaction with the customer by implementing internal and external quality assurance teams, CSAT surveys etc.

So why do so many companies lose business even though their customer satisfaction scores show positive results?   I’m reminded of the lecture I saw on Ted Talk when Simon Sinek said “Customers don’t buy your products or services, they buy how you make them feel.”

The thing with feelings is that they change over time. With all the different departments and the way customers have to interact with a company, management needs to create a “feeling” that is consistent among all channels through all customer interactions. More than that, when a person from a sales department speaks to a prospective customer, the feeling that the customer gets should be the same as when the next sales person receives a call from the same customer and more than that, if that same prospect sends an email or a web chat, that same feeling should resonate.  Easier said than done, yes, but  companies willing to invest in the total customer experience will reap the rewards of more business from existing clients as well as a boost in referral business.

Two examples come to mind.  I was having lunch with a few friends yesterday and one said that he’s looking to replace the windows in his home.   He remembered one of the guys at the table had just put in new windows less than a year ago, so his questions to him went something like this: “So I’m looking to replace my windows and I spoke to a couple different companies and I’m getting quotes and stories that are all over the place.  You just replaced your windows, didn’t you?  Who did you use?  Do you trust them?  Would you recommend I use them or in hind sight use someone else?  Did you have any leaks later and how quickly did they fix it?  I was also told that lifetime warranties are just a sales gimmick so I don’t think that really matters.”

Now being that I’m in the contact and call center industry and part of a company that is nearshore in Latin America and since we have an account that deals in residential services (not windows) and we handle their phone sales and customer service and also dispatch their contractors, handle their social media, respond to the emails, chat services as well as follow up survey for after job satisfaction, I was very interested in where this conversation was going!

The response was that he wouldn’t go out on a limb and recommend anyone.  He got quotes from three different companies and went with one of them. They were pretty good.  The salesperson gave him a good deal and at least he didn’t have to watch the installers while they were working because it seemed like they were doing a thorough and clean job.  As far as leaks, he had a window that leaked a few months in and after a couple of calls they came out and fixed it free of charge.  He said “You know how these things go.  To go out and install new windows they’re quick, but on warranties you need to hound them a bit to get what you need done.  It’s just how it works in these types of industries”.

It’s just how it works in these types of industries. Really?  “Why should it be like that in these types of industries?” I interjected.
“Because they already made their money on the sale” he responds, “now everything else takes away from the bottom line. So when I call sales I get an answer right away, but to get a person to service me after the job is done, I tend to call a couple of times, stay on hold for a while… but it doesn’t matter, I’m persistent.  They get it done eventually.”

It would have been great for the window company to be in on this lunch.  A person just asked his friend for a referral on a 20-30k job and since the follow up was ok, he didn’t get a rave review.  The feeling the company has left an existing customer was OK.  It wasn’t that he was dissatisfied.  It wasn’t that he wasn’t going to do business with them in the future, but he clearly was not a raving fan.  He was not an advocate for the business and did not refer them business.

Today’s challenge for companies is to see and measure the customer satisfaction through the life of the customer.  Every point of contact matters.  Teams must communicate the same message to their customers through all points of contact during all stages of the customer interaction. They must identify what that customer cycle is and truly understand how they are perceived in that cycle today. Then they should measure their performance in that cycle and build cross-functional teams to support those functions that need improvement as well as build open channels of communication between teams.

As best-selling marketing author Seth Godin wrote:
“Don’t touch it, you might break it.” This is, of course, the opposite of, “Touch it, you can make it better.” What’s the default where you work?

So go out there and create a process to support and enhance those customer life cycles and create a culture of constant improvement.

 

This article was written by Perry Silber, COO of GuateCall.  Our contact center is a Latin American Nearshore call center provider of multi-channel bilingual English and Spanish services located In Guatemala,Central America. If you would like to learn more about GuateCall and its services in voice, chat and email in both English and Spanish, please reach out to me at 713-474-2222 or by e-mail.