Outsourcing is a business strategy that consists in delegating certain tasks to a company specialized in the field. While it is not without risk, there are several factors that should be strongly considered, especially when building the service contract. Here is our advice.
A clear and detailed description of the services
The outsourcing contract should include a detailed description of the project and its scope. In the case of a partnership, do not hesitate to include requests for proposals and the provider’s subsequent response.
Key elements of this part of the contract are
- All client service requirements;
- Description of each service required;
- General service standards that must be met (compliance with international standards, etc.);
- A clause describing the functions not specified in the statement of work, but which must be included in the services provided (optional) by the contractor.
“The service level relate to the type of services that, on the one hand, are tailored to the needs and desires of the clients the firm wishes to attract and, on the other hand, are not so high as to significantly reduce profits” according to Relationclientmag.fr.
By clearly describing the expected service levels, the provider understands the company’s expectations. This also confirms the provider’s mission, objectives and quality, should they wish to renew their contract.
Other aspects of the service level:
- Milestone dates and contractual penalties for service level failures by the provider;
- Compensation for poor service;
- The detailed process in case the client or provider needs to modify the contract;
- Key performance indicators (KPIs) or other metrics related to the outsourced services.
Each party, both the provider and the company, must be clear on the costs applied for one and the total amount due for the services rendered for the other.
The cost of outsourcing depends on many factors, so it is imperative that the issue is clearly raised during negotiations. The objective is to avoid hidden costs!
It is also important to include a clause for negotiating the contractual conditions due to changing market conditions.
The duration of the contract
It is vital that both parties know exactly how long the outsourcing contract will last. This requires a clause that also includes the reasons for early termination. The idea is to avoid any practice of tacit renewal of a contract that does not satisfy either the service provider or the company.
What compensation is provided for the company in case of mistakes by the service provider? The contract must therefore include an indemnification clause specifying the responsibilities of the latter in case of negligence or inability to deliver. The client company is thus protected and reassured regarding compensation in case of failure during or after the project, from the outsourcing provider.
Outsourcing services, such as customer service and payroll, require outsourced agents to access confidential information such as bank details, addresses, etc. To secure the information, both parties must legally comply with the laws in their respective regions.
For example, if the customer is in the European Union, the service provider must comply with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)!
The performance of an outsourced team should be measured by regular audits. By proceeding according to the best practices in force, the company in demand manages to quickly take corrective measures when they are necessary.
In the event of an abrupt termination of an outsourcing contract following a dispute (failure to meet service levels, etc.), to protect the client company, the contract must include an amicable settlement clause. In many cases, this avoids legal situations that consume time, energy and financial resources!
Business continuity and recovery after a disaster
As the Covid-19 pandemic has shown us very recently, companies that are able to ensure business continuity and recovery allow their customers to operate in a smooth, transparent manner.
In addition to the virus, many other events can interrupt a company’s business:
- Computer attacks;
- Supply chain difficulties;
- Changes in regulations;
- Too significant human resources turnover.
The success of an outsourcing contract lies in the ability of each party to put down the most essential, most concrete keys. With clearly expressed expectations and results, each partner can work in tandem with the other without losing time.
The contract is the keystone of a successful outsourcing. More than a document, it serves as a support to the client company in case of misunderstanding, questioning, etc.
Outsourcing is our business! At ProContact, we work closely with you to include this solution in your business strategy. We can offer you an unprecedented adaptation of your way of working thanks to the arrival of resources located elsewhere, without losing time, money or quality.
ProContact is more than a contact centre. Thanks to trained, qualified, hand-picked and multilingual agents, we enable companies that choose us to gain credibility and above all to satisfy their customers, whatever the situation and in complete transparency:
- Telephone reception
- Remote secretary services
- Polls, surveys, satisfaction studies
- Remote marketing and remote prospecting (appointment setting, prospecting…)
- Files classification
- Management and enrichment of databases
- Customer loyalty
- Technical assistance (hotline, webhelp, technical support)
- After-sales service (SAV), customer service
- B2B / B2C prospecting;
- Customer relations;
- CRM tool and software;
- Satisfaction surveys;
- Human resources;
Outsourcing has become a tangible and concrete business strategy for the development of the company. To find out more about our services and for a quality partnership, click on our contact form, send us an e-mail or call us on (+33) 1 77 75 04 50.