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Agent Occupancy

Definition

What is Agent Occupancy?

Agent occupancy means that the percentage of time spent on answering inbound calls by a call center agent is against the available or idle time. It can be measured by dividing the workload time by staff time. It is a statistic used to measure the efficiency of a call center agent.

The agent occupancy is sometimes confused with the utilization of agents. Both metrics have the same numerator but they have different denominators. The agent occupancy denominator is the cumulative time the speech, text, or chat agent logs into the framework, far different from agent utilization. Meanwhile, agent utilization indicates the overall time consumed by an agent through chat, voice, and email.

What is Agent Occupancy
What is Agent Occupancy?

How to calculate the agent occupancy?

Agent occupancy is a standard and significant service desk indicator for monitoring and trends. This is because it gives an example of how active agents are when logging into the system. However, for the reasons outlined. The Occupancy Rate and the Service Level will inform you whether the personnel level is set correctly for any given period.

Here is the formula for agent occupancy rate:

Agent Occupancy Rate = Handle time (talk time + after call work time) / time signed into a queue.

Outsourcing FAQ

What is Customer Service Representative?

What is a customer service representative?

A customer service representative (CSR) is an individual who interacts with customers on behalf of the company, usually to address their concerns.

Customer service reps are the front lines of service providers in customer support. They know first-hand how satisfied and dissatisfied customers are with the services they receive. Most importantly, CSRs prevent delivering poor customer service as much as possible.

A good customer service rep possesses a lot of skills they need to effectively deliver customer service. This includes good communication and problem-solving skills, quick wit, and interpersonal skills.

Customer service representatives are also called customer service associates and customer service advisors or consultants.

Duties of a customer service representative

Customer service representatives typically aim to maintain customer satisfaction and answer questions regarding a company or product. Their duties depend on what type of customer service they handle, whether inbound or outbound.

Inbound customer service representatives are the ones who handle incoming customer inquiries and concerns. More so, they are responsible for the following tasks.

Do basic troubleshooting Process orders Pull up customer accounts Handle and resolve customer complaints Help determine solutions for each problem

Outbound CSRs, meanwhile, are the ones who reach out to customers either through cold calling or emails. They deal mostly with the following aspects.

Lead generation Billing reminders Appointment confirmation Market surveys Key skills of customer service representatives

Most customer service representatives enter the industry with a high school diploma. However, a good customer service representative should have the following key skills and traits needed to be competitive at work.

Good communication. Customer service representatives must have good communication skills, especially since they will talk to customers all day. They have to listen carefully to their clients and be able to speak with them at the same time. Problem-solving. A good customer service representative should be able to analyze customer inquiries correctly and provide the best solutions for their concerns. Time management. Customer service representatives work in a fast-paced environment, handling volumes of calls and workload each day. This is why they need to manage their time properly so they can accommodate their target calls in a given period. Empathy. Most importantly, they must be able to handle their customers in a professional manner and with empathy. Customer service representatives should be able to place themselves in their client's shoes and understand their situations at hand. How to become a customer service representative

Anyone can ace a customer service representative job by doing the following steps.

Complete at least a secondary education. Many customer service representatives enter the industry with a high school diploma. This is since they have developed basic communication and interpersonal skills needed at work. Develop necessary skills. As much as possible, customer service reps should work on developing other necessary skills, including those mentioned above. Consider getting certifications. Lastly, a certification or license from institutions can be used as strong proof of their proficiency and skills. This is why getting certifications is most recommended, especially for CSRs looking to advance their employment. BPO customer service

BPO customer service means hiring a third-party service provider to handle inbound and outbound calls and other non-verbal communication with customers. In most cases, customer service outsourcing teams are part of a call center service.

For businesses, partnering with an outsourcing company is an ideal option to offer the best possible level of service to clients. After all, the more positive the experience is, the more it drives loyalty and brand recognition.

To find the best partner for your customer service tasks, you have to be open to assessing new and innovative service providers — either nearshore, onshore, or offshore

Be diligent in searching for the right fit for your company.

Remember that it is critical to choose a partner that understands the latest market demand to help you grow your business, maintain clients and gain new patrons.

 

Customer service representative in the Philippines

Outsource Accelerator provides you access to great customer service representatives that you can outsource from the Philippines starting from $6 per hour. By doing this, you can save up to 70% on staffing costs.

We have over 5,000 articles, 350+ podcast episodes, and a comprehensive directory with 2,500 BPOs… all designed to make it easier for clients to learn about and engage with customer service outsourcing.

To get started with customer service outsourcing, take a look at our list of the Top 40 BPO Companies in the Philippines.

What is Customer Support?

What is Customer Support?

Customer support is a range of customer service activities utilized to assist customers, help them in getting the most out of your offered product or service, and resolve their problems. Providing assistance in planning, installation, troubleshooting, onboarding, maintenance, upgrading, and product disposal all fall under the customer support category.

The quality of a company’s customer support plays a significant role in customer satisfaction and retention. In a world where everything is digital and your brand reputation can be ruined or built up in a blink of an eye, it is important to focus on the quality of customer support that you offer.

Customer support vs customer service

People make the very common mistake of using customer support and customer service interchangeably. Customer service is a broad term that refers to the activities that a company does to help improve its relationship with its customers. Customer support falls under this category.

Customer support, on the other hand, is a more specific term that refers to the assistance provided to customers when they need help with your product, from installation til the end of the service.

What is What is business process outsourcing?

What is Business Process Outsourcing BPO?

Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) is the delegation of business processes to an external service provider to a nearby or farther location. BPO uses various technology-enabled services to optimize the delivery of services.

Some of the usual outsourced business functions are the following.

Payroll Accounting Human resources Customer service Sales Marketing

In the case of content providers, these could mean hiring writers, remote editors, or virtual assistants.

BPO speeds up processes and enhances efficiency. Companies that outsource some of their business processes use their time on core services and competencies.

With this shift in focus, companies improve their current processes which may result in improved customer satisfaction. BPO helps companies divert their resources to more critical business strategies.

Often, companies find it impractical to hire a full-time position in-house because of the cost associated with doing so. Outsourcing services can also help them save costs and resources in hiring suitable employees.

How does Business Process Outsourcing work?

Business process outsourcing happens when a business taps a third-party service provider to operate some of its internal processes. Such ‘processes’ include customer service, accounting and finance, or sales.

It is different from hiring an agency to do specific tasks, as the outsourcing provider (BPO) is more concerned with the ongoing production of labour-intensive tasks, instead of the higher-level strategy and guidance.

Now, business process outsourcing has broadened and is more akin to staff augmentation, or staff leasing.

What are the benefits of business process outsourcing?

There are many benefits to outsourcing, as well as some downsides and risks. The common benefits include:

Cost savings

Companies can enjoy savings of up to 70% by leveraging the salaries and costs in countries such as the Philippines and India.

Global market

Businesses get to access a bigger pool of talent that can fit their requirements. They can have better options in hiring employees since they are not limited to what is available in their home countries.

Global presence

At the same time, business process outsourcing opens clients to global trade opportunities. They can establish their global presence and expand more easily to other locations since they already have operations in the area.

Flexible workforce

BPO reduces internal local compliance obligations including providing additional office spaces to employees. Instead, organizations can hold their business operations on a remote setup, most usually having their teams in an office provided by the BPO firm.

Leverage skill

Companies cannot always do everything on their own. BPO enables them to leverage the skills of other specialist companies on more complex tasks such as accounting and IT.

Focus

Lastly, BPO enables organizations to focus on their core business functions. This is since most of their non-core business operations are done with the help of a reliable service provider.

Business process outsourcing examples

The business process outsourcing sector is a vast industry, generating over $200bn annually, and employing millions of people worldwide.

BPO can be seen in different forms and contexts, from hiring single staff to getting an offshore team. Some examples of BPO include:

Big enterprise

Facebook and Uber outsource many of their operational functions, including content moderation for Facebook, and customer service for Uber

Medium-size businesses

A medium business with 50-500 staff might outsource the labour-intensive accounting and finance functions to a team in the Philippines.

Small business and entrepreneur

It is common for small business owners to have a Virtual Assistant (VA) working for them full time and remotely from the Philippines.

What are the different types of BPO?

The type of business process outsourcing can be characterised by their specialisation, location, and size.

Generalist or specialist BPOs

Business process outsourcing is in the human resources and professional services sector. However, their services extend across all industries. The majority of BPOs are generalists, in that they offer a full range of professional services.

Meanwhile, some specialise in certain verticals such as the following.

Legal process outsourcing

Legal process outsourcing deals more with delegating legal processes and compliances to legal firms in another area.

Knowledge process outsourcing

Meanwhile, knowledge process outsourcing enables companies to outsource knowledge-related work including research and development, innovation, and creatives.

Location

Business process outsourcing typically operates from developing nations such as the Philippines, India, and Colombia. They typically have cheaper cost-of-living and bigger populations. Different locations offer different advantages.

Size of BPO

The bigger BPOs employ more than 250,000 people. They are huge, global operations. Medium-sized BPOs range from 500-5,000 staff and offer a full range of services. The smaller BPOs might have 1-500 people.

Functions of business process outsourcing

Collectively, business process outsourcing provides any kind of staffing solution. Common functions of BPO include:

Finance and accounting

Outsourced finance and accounting services help businesses manage their books, monitor cash flow, and keep up with corporate income tax compliances without fuss.

Healthcare

Healthcare outsourcing, meanwhile, organizes various back- and front-end functions done for the healthcare and insurance industries.

Creative and content

Creative services outsourcing covers everything from post-production of Hollywood movies to newspaper and website content.

Tech, IT and development

IT outsourcing involves delegating network management, web and app development, and cybersecurity protection to IT firms in different countries.

Sales & customer support

Some BPO providers specialize in sales and customer support for pre- and post-sales transactions. This helps companies meet the expectations and demands of their customers, keeping them satisfied even after their purchase.

Marketing

BPOs and marketing firms can help in ongoing marketing, communication and branding activities for their clients. This helps them attract more suitable leads in a cost-efficient way.

Talent and HR

Businesses can delegate HR, recruitment and compliance to professional employer organizations to maximize recruitment and workforce management.

Administration

Generalist BPOs help organizations accomplish general business administration and operational activities. This includes data entry, appointment setting, and other related functions.

Supply chain management

Lastly, e-commerce stores benefit from outsourcing supply chain management to manage warehouse and delivery processes.

Top BPO companies in the world’s top outsourcing hubs

A wide range of business process outsourcing companies in different parts of the world provide utmost services to their Western and local clients. Many of them even earned recognition by award-giving bodies due to their performance in both their roles and their level of care for the employees.

Check out the top BPO companies in several outsourcing destinations below.

Top BPO companies in the Philippines Top Indian BPO companies Top South African BPO companies Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) services

With the rise of new offshore outsourcing locations, companies can have better options in terms of location and services they can delegate. However, finding a suitable BPO company can be a daunting task to be done on their own.

Good thing advisory services such as Outsource Accelerator is there to help them.

Outsource Accelerator is the most trusted source for independent information & advisory for Business Process Outsourcing (BPO). We have over 5,000 articles, 350+ podcast episodes, and a comprehensive directory with 2,500+ BPOs from different locations.

Outsource Accelerator's offerings make it easier for clients to learn about, and engage with, business process outsourcing companies worldwide.

Want to learn more about outsourcing? Check out the Inside Outsourcing book as well as the Inside Outsourcing book review today!

What is Resolution Time?

What is Resolution Time?

Resolution time is the average amount of time it takes for a customer service provider to resolve a customer’s issue, request, or concern. It is the amount of time from when the client creates an incident report or files a ticket, to when the problem or cause of concern is actually solved.

This metric is typically measured through business hours instead of clock hours, due to the company's customer service organization down time. It may vary depending on the company though, as more and more businesses are investing in 24/7 customer service teams.

Resolution time vs. response time

These two terms are typically interchanged, but they have one distinct difference. Like mentioned above, resolution time is the average amount of time it takes for a customer service provider to resolve a customer’s issue, request, or concern.

Response time, on the other hand, refers to the average amount of time it took for a customer service provider (automated bots not counted) to address the client’s incident report and let them know that they’re currently working on it.

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About OA

Outsource Accelerator is the trusted source of independent information, advisory and expert implementation of Business Process Outsourcing (BPO).

The #1 outsourcing authority

Outsource Accelerator offers the world’s leading aggregator marketplace for outsourcing. It specifically provides the conduit between world-leading outsourcing suppliers and the businesses – clients – across the globe.

The Outsource Accelerator website has over 5,000 articles, 350+ podcast episodes, and a comprehensive directory with 3,000+ BPO companies… all designed to make it easier for clients to learn about – and engage with – outsourcing.

About Derek Gallimore

Derek Gallimore has been in business for 20 years, outsourcing for over eight years, and has been living in Manila (the heart of global outsourcing) since 2014. Derek is the founder and CEO of Outsource Accelerator, and is regarded as a leading expert on all things outsourcing.