In a previous post, I wrote about my experiences working with small Philippines call centers. While everything I said remains true- I’ve since learned more about the call center industry there and how the larger agencies differ.
Philippines Call Centers – No Middle Ground
Two classes of call centers exist in the Philippines: large and small. The larger call centers typically have 1,000+ seats, while the smaller ones have 30 or less.
The large call centers will not typically consider taking on new projects starting at less than 50 to 100 agents. The smaller call centers can accommodate projects requiring 5 to 15 agents (depending on availability), but you will not have room to expand your project.
The smaller call centers are also less likely to have technology and processes in place to support projects requiring a a higher level of sophistication.
Philippines Call Centers Prefer Inbound Telemarketing
This is actually true of most far-shore telemarketing services.
Inbound telemarketing projects support a more stable revenue stream. Agents can be cross-trained and put on multiple inbound projects so they face less risk of downtime. They’re also easier to recruit and train for since many of the projects are transaction processing oriented.
Outbound Telemarketing In The Philippines
Experienced outbound telemarketing staff for lead generation, appointment setting, and sales are harder to come by in the Philippines.
The entire telemarketing outsourcing industry there is less than ten years old; so, finding agents with more than 2 or 3 years of experience that haven’t already been promoted to manager level takes time.
Combine requiring years of experience along with needing expertise in a particular industry, and the challenge of staffing your project becomes even harder.
Telemarketing Compensation Requirements
Telemarketing agents in the Philippines are hired as employees, not contractors. Their laws and cultural mores also require that agents be given every chance to redeem themselves if they’re under performing on a project.
I’ve also found all the Philippines call center owners and managers I’ve talked to there are risk-averse. So, if you’re looking for a call center willing to work on a commission basis, you’re better off looking elsewhere.
That is not to say that offering incentives for successes won’t work- just that, at a minimum, you have to be prepared to pay a base.