If you’ve avoided looking into outsourcing help desk services for your IT help desk because you think they’re all outside the United States, then it’s time to set the record straight. In fact, there are several misconceptions about technical support outsourcing that can be an obstacle for companies that struggle with solving help desk challenges alone.
Considering the industry horror stories about offshore tech support, it’s not surprising that some IT managers just want to steer clear. However, it’s important to know that as the IT managed services industry has matured, there are now more flexible, US-based options available to help reinforce your internal IT support team.
Here’s the truth behind five common myths regarding outsourcing technical help desk services:
Myth #1: All help desk resources are outside the United States.
First, let’s clear up the confusion between “outsourcing” and “offshoring.” The two terms don’t mean the same thing. “Offshoring” refers to moving services or operations to a different country from the company and its customers. “Outsourcing” simply refers to services provided by a third party, regardless of location. While less common, outsourced or third-party help desk services can indeed be provided by highly trained US-based IT professionals. Generally located in more affordable areas of the US, domestic IT support services can be competitively priced when provided by an experienced partner that leverages built-in automation, efficiencies and other cost savings. With US-based IT support technicians, companies avoid the communication problems prevalent with offshore support that have led to customer frustration, loss of trust and wasted time for internal IT staff.
Myth #2: Third-party help desk services must be full-time; all-or-nothing.
Some third-party providers actually specialize in offering companies a flexible range of support options to help alleviate internal help desk gaps with pay-for-what-you-need pricing. For example, companies that lack the resources for 24/7 technical support can use third-party support for off-hours and weekends, relieving strain on their IT team. Another flexible option involves tapping third-party IT support to scale up to meet peak periods of high support demand caused by seasonality, upgrades and system changes.
Myth #3: Outsourcing help desk services means less internal control.
While some IT managers are concerned that outsourcing leads to a loss of control, we’ve found that TierPoint clients experience the opposite effect because help desk services free up their staff to focus on more important issues. Often, internal IT teams become overwhelmed with day-to-day support demands, leaving no time to tackle strategic projects. When you’re able to turn to a trusted partner to meet some or all of the support demands, you can focus more on gaining control over root causes and taking on innovation projects.
Myth #4: All outsourced technical support leads to lower customer satisfaction.
Let’s face it, most of us know firsthand how frustrating it is to call tech support and get a technician who doesn’t understand our name, let alone our problem. We’ve found it’s actually possible to improve customer satisfaction rates when a well-trained team provides help desk services, relieving pressure from an overloaded internal IT team. Similar to other managed service models, team members become more available to meet the growing technology needs of the business. In addition, an experienced provider can offer detailed KPI reporting to help identify improvement areas that can increase customer satisfaction.
Myth #5: Some systems and processes are too unique to be supported by a third party.
It’s not unusual for IT leaders to be concerned that their systems are too specialized for a third-party to deliver effective support. However, an experienced service provider should be adept at customizing help desk services and training the third-party support team to meet the unique needs of your business. Your needs can be assessed on the front-end to develop a customized plan and script to support your specific set of devices and applications.
Do you have other questions about third-party technical support services? We’d love to chat with you about how our US-based help desk services model can free up your resources while keeping your customers happy and coming back.
As Director of Operations, Help Desk Services, Michelle is responsible for maintaining high performance and customer satisfaction levels at TierPoint’s contact center based in Omaha, Nebraska. With over 10 years experience in help desk management and operations, she leads a team of expert support technicians to align processes, tools and services with customer requirements.