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A new acronym for the call center: Total Cost of Outsourcing (TCO)

Lori Bocklund weighs in on the controversial topic of outsourcing. In this column, she provides some guidance on how to perform a total cost of outsourcing (TCO) analysis before making an outsourcing decision.

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Outsourcing has become the topic for call center and CRM professionals. Call center functions have been outsourced, including out of the country -- for many years and for many reasons. The need to handle calls at lower cost, to address a staffing challenge or peak volume issues, or to provide a specialized function such as outbound calling have triggered companies to find outsourcing partners. Companies have also defined their strategy, identified their core competencies and decided to focus their energies on other things, while letting "experts" at customer contact represent them over the phone, via e-mail, and on text chat. These outsourcing strategies have been good decisions for many companies.

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This was first published in June 2004

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