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Info Call Company’ Customers Satisfaction Improvement Essay

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Updated: Jul 11th, 2020

Introduction

“InfoCall is the first and only Contact Center outsourcing provider in the Kingdom of Bahrain. InfoCall provides both outbound and inbound tile-services for various business activities including lead generation, inbound customer service, help-desk, appointment scheduling, market research, surveys and client retention. Using the most advanced contact centre technology in the industry and qualified customer service representatives, InfoCall is dedicated to helping organizations increase their business performance and strengthen their customer service.”

Research methodology

The research is an applied research work that will involve writing an action plan that Info Call can implement to improve its customer satisfaction. The research aims at improving service delivery in the company as well as solving challenges faced by the company. the chart below summarizes the process that will be adhered to as a research methodology approach:

Summarizes the process that will be adhered to as a research methodology approach

Hypothesis

Definition

With changing customer perception, there is a need for Info Call to understand how the changes are affecting their line of business. Competition in the sector from domestic and international players is the main driver of competition that the company has to face. However, an understanding of customer perception, attitude, and motivator of the company’s products will go along way to assist the management in enlarging its business base further.

Suitability of the research

The envisioned research design in the opinion of the research is the most fitting in terms of attending the research questions (questionnaires, interviews, and discussions) that were set in the study as well as considering secondary sources information. When developing the research framework, it involved researchers consultation and working closely with my dissertation advisor, who gave valuable inputs and insights. The prior studies and literature research on metaphors that the research conducted had also been of help; many aspects of the research design had been patterned or based upon the methodology and approaches used in these previous studies.

Objectives of the project

The main aim of conducting the research is to understand the customer perceptions towards the services offered by Info Call and how their perceptions can be analyzed in order to expand the market share of Info Call. While analyzing the perception of the customer towards the products of the info centre, mainly three concepts such as their sacrifice, reward and expectations must be taken into consideration.

The research is aimed to assist the managers of Info Call centre through achieving maximum customer satisfaction. Investigation on the business operations of Info call in the ground of the current business conditions in Bahrain call centre industry will provide an overview of the opportunities in the market.

Aims and approach of the research

Information regarding the ways to improve the services for achieving maximum customer satisfaction can be supplied through this research.

  1. Analyze the perceptions of Info Call’s customers and aggregate the results to recommend measures to improve customer satisfaction.
  2. Evaluate the degree of satisfaction and identify significant perception that will help in the recommendations for improvement.
  3. The study of the customer perception of Info Call services is conducted in terms of:
    1. Customer behaviour
    2. Customer standard
    3. Frequency of needs
    4. Services offered
    5. Customer content (satisfied with the data and whether or not his. /her queries were answered and how much of the service has been of a value).
  4. Identify the motivational theories of Maslow and Herzberg in the business concept of Info call centre.
  5. Identify the strengths weaknesses, threats and opportunities of Info call by using the SWOT analysis.
  6. Draw a conclusion from the opinion of customers and the manager’s views collected through questionnaires.
  7. Submit a detailed report to the company’s management with recommendations.

Skills and knowledge to be gained

The information collected in the research will be crucial in assisting Info Call to improve its customer service. The research will pave the pathway through which the company can understand and gain insight customer analysis and understanding. The knowledge attained and skills developed will be of crucial benefit to the management as they embark on development and business enlargement procedures and strategies.

Terms of reference

In this research, the investigation is mainly concentrated on analyzing and improving customer perceptions in the call centre industry and the required modification on the operations of InfoCall centre to meet the changing perceptions of customers.

The major investigation would be based on company staff management, interviews, and examining the relevant documents/marketing process techniques, in addition to client and financial details.

Info Call is a new business in the market of Bahrain, and because of that, the customers may not be familiar with the exact service and the benefits they are providing. Many of the client firms or the customers find it difficult to outsource since they have to reveal their confidential and other sensitive information to the outsource call centre. So the perceptions of the client company towards the info call and the services offered needs to be assessed, and hence penetrate into the market and offer more services to the customers in order to satisfy them, and also to increase the market share. 1

Info Call wants to reduce the risk elements in its ongoing business for maximizing the market share and profitability. Its objective is also to become a regional contact centre in the country. It is insisting on holding its clients for the long term. For this, it wants to carry out healthy business operations with high market growth.

The required modification on the operations of Info call centre is analyzed in order to make a general conclusion regarding the requirements of the call centre business firm in conditions of changing perceptions of customers. Business growth of the call centre industry is based on efficient and well-performed human resource of the firm. Thus the motivational theories are also analyzed with the business concept of Info call centre.

Reasons for the choice of issues

Devising Criteria

This study attempts to analyses the perceptions of Info Call’s customers for the purpose of improving their products and services through employee performance evaluation.

The investigation will seek to address the following criteria:

  1. The perceptions of Info Call’s customers in terms of product quality (taste, quality, price, packaging, etc.) and services (delivery, etc.)
  2. The perceptions of employees and top management in terms of product quality and services.
  3. The difference between customer perception and employee/management perception of Info Call’s products and services.
  4. The challenges met by Info Call’s management in order to deliver the services efficiently.
  5. Based on the above findings, propose intervention measures that would help improve customer satisfaction, and the extent to which they are satisfied.

Assumptions

This research provided (alarming or impacting) direction by the following assumptions:

There are various conceptions of InfoCall customers and the products and services.

  1. There are various conceptions of InfoCall employees and management.
  2. There are differences between customer perception and employee/management perception of InfoCall’s products and services.
  3. There are possible measures that would help improve customer satisfaction.

The following are the hypothesis that the research will be based on:

Null hypothesis

There are no differences between customer and employee/management perception.

Alternative hypothesis

There is a difference between customer and employee/management perception.

Ethical aspects of the research

All participants will be required to fill, sign, and date a Participant Information Sheet; the sheet will abide them to provide such required information in the most objective and sound judgment; the signing of the participation information sheet will not abide the participant to offer information but will act as a consent form and will give the participant background of the study. The sheet will have rights, duties, obligations and powers they have in the study; the forms will make it clear to participants that participation is voluntary and they can withdraw from the exercise any time they feel like. However, when withdrawing from their participation, they are expected to advise the research within such reasonable time that can allow adjustments.

There will be no any one time that debriefing will occur; there will be high levels of adherence to deception rules and guidelines. All information collected will be treated with maximum confidentiality and privacy; when addressing different issues and considering opinions, the anonymous state will be adopted, all information will be used for the study.

Duration

The research will take a total of approximately three weeks from 11th August 2011 to 5th September 2011 (detailed work plan can be found in the action plan section below).

Actual plan

The rationale for the research question or hypothesis

The actual reason for using SWOT analysis is to assess both the internal as well as the external environment within which the company works. This would provide me with an insight as to what are the critical factors which have a greater impact on the performance as well of the company in local as well as regional market besides studying the different threat and opportunities available to the firm, in order to better manage its external environment, including competition. This analysis will also provide me with an opportunity to understand and analyze the strategies which can be used by the firm to gain the necessary competitive advantage in the market where it works, and therefore expanding its market share.

In addition, studying the different threat and opportunities available to the firm helps to improve and manage its external environment, including competition. This analysis will also provide me with an opportunity to understand and analyze the strategies which can be used by the firm to gain the necessary competitive advantage in the markets where it works.

Info Call centre is a leading contact centre outsourcing provider in Bahrain whose major operations include customer care, customer acquisitions, technical support, and debt collection services. They are also increasingly concentrating on creating customer loyalty and value creation for the client firms.

In the call centre industry, customer perception and satisfaction play an important role in determining the success of the business and also attract new customers towards it. Call centres are customer-oriented businesses, and they usually spend millions of dollars on training and maintaining high-quality representatives. The outcome of call centre businesses is entirely based on the perception of the customers towards its product and services. 2

Perception means matching the purchase and consumption of the customers with their current request for service. In case of call centres, the customer perception can be viewed by satisfying the customer through processing the orders on time, billing the inquiries on time, dealing with new applications and also by solving issues and queries of the customer more efficiently.

Whenever the customer approaches a company, they expect some reward of goods and services in return for their sacrifices of money. So the customer expectation has to be clearly identified so as to improve the services, and also to expand the business share in order to match the expectations of the customers.

Task dates

For implementing the research plan effectively and timely, a detailed analysis of the time and cost required for the research has to be carried out. For identifying the time and cost requirements of this research, a PERT analysis is carried out. From this analysis, we formulate the most efficient, timely plan for this research, and it ensures completing the project within the projected cost and time.

Timescale

Timescale

Review dates

To ensure that the research is meeting expected expectations at every stage, there will be reviews of outcomes after every exercise; the dates will be as follows:

Review date 1: August 16, 2011

In the first review, the number of materials and secondary data collected will be analyzed; the quality of questionnaires formulated will be evaluated. This will be done with collaboration with the supervisor and adjustments made thereafter

Review date 2: August 18, 2011

Information collected from questionnaires and managers interviews will be evaluated and compared with the hypothesis; this will offer the direction that the research is taking. The shaped direction will assist the researcher in evaluating the quality of questionnaires as well as gauge the level at which the same will be attained. In the event adjustments are required, then they will be done and discussed with the supervisor in good time for changes.

Review date 3: September 1, 2011

With the data already collected, the research will take time and review the data; this stage will involve interpolating the direction of analysis and subsequent results thereafter; the review will be done considering the next move of writing the final draft.

Review date 4: September 5, 2011

The report drafted will be reviewed for consistency with the set objectives and goals; grammar and other elements likely to distort the quality of the report will be looked into.

Monitoring/reviewing process strategy

To ensure that the process and the pathway set has been adhered to; the researcher will work closely with the supervisor to offer guidelines on the way forward; occasionally, there will be a review of expected results. The main critical success elements that will be used are the objectives and hypothesis of the study; consistency with literature reviews will also offer a good background to evaluate the general progress of the research.

The chart below details the various reviews and teachers interactions that will occur in the course of the research:

Details the various reviews and teachers interactions that will occur in the course of the research

With the above structure, the research will be able to move step after step getting advises and direction from the supervisor.

Primary and Secondary sources

The time period in which any research interaction will take place will occur after the selected participants and relevant authorities have granted approval; the main consideration that will be made is the consent that will be derived from InfoCall first to use their company as a case study. The purpose of the authority approval process is to ensure the ethical treatment and protection of human research participants and/or their records, the reason for the same will be given to the management and the reason why the researcher believes that the report will be of benefit to the company. The customer survey and interview with managers is considered as an accurate way of data collection by researchers. Thus the method of data collection is a well-accepted method and the information from the analysis of the data can be considered as accurate and reliable.

The research will be conducted in the Kingdom of Bahrain, particularly to the customers, employees and management of Info Call. In this area of study, the data gathered will be validated through the use of a focus group which is also conducted in the same area but with those who are pioneer customers of Info Call.

The sources of information are gathered from Info Call because it is the subject of study and where employees, customers and the management personnel are considered respondents.

Gathering of data would be (easy and fast) since the respondents are within the research area.

Retrieval of the questionnaires would most likely be complete due to its accessibility.

Generally, information is collected through secondary and primary sources:

Primary sources of information

When collecting primary sources of information, the research will make use of interviews and questionnaire method of data collection.

Interviews

Semi-structures and structured interview questionnaires will be used to collect information from target population; the target population for the data collection method will be InfoCall customers, InfoCall employees, InfoCall management team, InfoCall competitors, and “third party” customers (third party customers are customers who reserve service from companies that InfoCall has served or advised.

Due to time and cost constraints and the expected setbacks of using interviews, the research will limit it to a minimum of 40 interviews. The interviewees will be composed as follows InfoCall customers (at least 10% of them), InfoCall employees (at least 20% of them), Sakastew InfoCall management team (at least 20% of them), InfoCall competitors (at least 20% of them), and third party” customers (at least 5% of them). Interviews will also be conducted with customer management gurus who have proposed the method and probably being actively involved in its implementation in similar situations ((at least 10% of them). Finally, at least 10% of the interviews will be with people who hardly use the services of InfoCall and gauge their reason and augment for their stand.

Questionnaires

The second primary data collection method that the research will use is questionnaires; the method will involve online and manual questionnaires. To ensure that quality information has been collected, the questionnaires will be sent to specific people who will be thought to have sound information on the topic area. The people whom the questionnaires will target are InfoCall has served or advised. Due to time and cost constraints and the expected setbacks of using interviews; the research will also consider the inputs of those people who have opted not to use the company’s service or the service of another similar provider. Care will be noted not to have an interviewed person fill questionnaire; to facilitate objectivity, contact between the researcher and participants will be kept at a minimum, participants will be given instructions with the instrument attached.

Participants will be instructed to complete the questionnaire and return it to the researcher’s e-mail address or to a mailing address provided. In completing the questionnaire, participants will be directed to respond to each item based on EI and job burnout measurements. Participants will be encouraged to complete and return their questionnaires within a specific time frame. To maximize the return rate, telephone contact, face-to-face contact, and e-mail reminders will be employed. Those who choose to participate will proceed to complete the questionnaire online. Others may choose to print out and complete the questionnaire manually and send the completed form through interoffice mail, hand-deliver the form, or send the form to the researcher’s post office box.

Secondary sources

There has been much research and literature on the area of customer management; different scholars have expressed their views on the right approach to handle growing and changing perceptions of customers all over the world. With the documentation, the research will orient him with the literature so that he can get a clear picture of the situation on the ground as well as how it can be handled. It is important to note that an understanding of secondary materials will be of crucial gain to the researcher as he will be able to formulate his research problem and objectives.

The following are the areas that the researcher will get secondary information are newspapers (mostly business review segment), library books (mostly on business management and customer relating management), journals, periodicals, and articles written by management scholars, books, journals, library search, use of IT, internet, and media. When reviewing the materials, the research will be keen on the qualification of the writer, his experience, and the time that the material was written; materials older than five years will be disregarded.

The chart below gives an analysis of data collection methods (primary and secondary) that will be used in the research:

Historical researchers use

Research project

Preparation

An elaborate working plan has to be formulated, and the overall environmental factors have to be analyzed so as to identify the potential opportunities in the industry. For finding the default in the ongoing operations of the business and its potential strengths to become competitive in the industry, detailed analysis of the operations of the business is necessary.

For identifying the potential opportunities in the business environment, data relating to the external as well as internal business conditions, are collected and analyzed. For this, both primary and secondary data should be collected. For collecting primary data, interviews with the managerial personnel are planned with a well-prepared questionnaire. For collecting data relating to the competitive factors in the industry and relative strength and weaknesses of Info Call Centre, secondary data from internet sources such as websites of Info Call Centre are used. For analyzing the external environmental data, PEST analysis is applied. Secondary data collected for this research is mainly related to the existing business conditions in the industry.

This research will require extensive knowledge of the different marketing strategies such as the SWOT analysis and strategic management theories such as motivational theories for getting better performance from the employees. After collecting all necessary data, I will conduct internal as well as external analysis of the data so that a comprehensive picture can emerge. For collecting primary data, a managerial questionnaire will be prepared focused on operational and managerial data relating to the company in the industry and its effectiveness in profitability and market acceptance.

An investigation is conducted among the staff in order to collect internal operations of the company for collecting information relating to the internal operations of the company. From this, relevant information about the financial position and internal marketing process techniques can be collected. Customer satisfaction with the services of Info Call centre is collected from customers through a questionnaire. Internet sources are mainly used to collect secondary data. The major sources of data would include the company’s website, newspapers, business journals, as well as other sources.

  1. The study will use descriptive methods of research in its analysis of customer’s perception.
  2. Questionnaires will be distributed to the top and middle management personnel. This will be collected after two weeks for aggregation purposes.
  3. Describe the extent of the employee’s customer service in Info Call.
  4. The survey method is used to gather customer perception:
  • A questionnaire for the managers to answer will provide an insight into the current business operations of Info call and its strengths and weaknesses.
  • Research motivational forces adopted by Info Call for getting a maximum result from the employees should be deeply analyzed.
  • Other factors in the external environment affecting the business growth of Info Call will be assessed through PEST analysis, and SWOT for internal analysis.

Through this research, the factors essential for business growth and profitability can be identified properly. This recommendation for making business operations profitable through ensuring customer satisfaction can be supplied. The following chart shows the strengths that InfoCall can use to improve its customer base:

CRM

Direct information about info call is collected from managers and customers.

Methodology

The project aimed to observe the customer perception tools for the Info Call Centre is mainly based on a customer survey and interview with the manager. In order to analyze the customer perception and interests, the customer survey is the most suitable way as it discloses the needs and interests of the customers on an average basis. The internal operations of the firm are analyzed through an interview with the manager of the firm. This will help to explore the customer perception strategies adopted by the firm and its effectiveness in attaining customer satisfaction for the business. In the literature part of the project review of motivational theories are adopted as it helps to derive a conclusion regarding the requirements of motivation in the successful operations of the business.

Type of questionnaires used for the study

The managerial questionnaire is prepared by focusing on the motivational strategies adopted by the firm and its effectiveness in meeting the targeted performance improvement. Questionnaire for the customer survey is prepared by focusing on questions relating to customer perceptions.

Sampling methods used for the study

A questionnaire was constructed to find out the nature of customer perceptions in the call centre industry and their specific needs and interests. The population for the study on Info Call is large, and thus for the data collection, a sample survey is adopted.

Data relating to the Info Call customers and business tactics is collected by way of customer surveys and an interview with the manager. A simple interview was resorted to since enough relevant information relating to the internal operations and policies of the firm can be gathered.

The population for the study on Info Call is large, and thus for the data collection, a sample survey is adopted. 3 The method used in this study with regard to the survey of the customer is a stratified random sample on the basis of the segmented customers of the Info Call Centre is adopted. Only customers in the call centre industry of Bahrain is taken into consideration in this research. Out of the total customers, 40 customers were selected on a random sampling basis.

In this method of sampling, the total population for the study is divided into smaller groups, known as strata on the basis of certain basics such as profession, income level etc. Members sharing a specific attribute or characteristic are included in specific strata. In the case of managers, a simple interview was resorted to since enough relevant information relating to the internal operations and policies of the firm can be gathered.

Limitation of the sampling method

Sampling methods have certain limitations. Generalization of the results generated from the analysis of the sample population is the major limitation of sample survey. The accuracy of the results of the survey is subjected to the selection of the samples from the population. The research on Info Call centre business has adopted stratified random sampling consisting of 40 samples only. When considering the large customer base of Info Call centre, the views and perceptions of the selected samples may not be showing the views and perceptions on an average basis.

There are certain disadvantages with regard to the stratified random sampling method adopted in selecting the customer respondents to the survey. The main disadvantage is the information about the population to be surveyed. Lack of knowledge about the population will result in poor population selection in this case, resulting in probable errors in the result. So, if a non-representative population is selected by accident, the whole survey results may be misleading.

Qualitative data analysis

Since the research is a qualitative research methodology approach, the data will be descriptive statistics (i.e., interpreting transcripts, coding techniques, categorization, relationships, trends) will be computed for each variable within the study. Data collected will be analyzed using qualitative data analyzing tools; it will make use of computer programs like SPSS (statistical package of social sciences) and other qualitative data analysis methods. The analysis will ensure that only relevant data are subjected to the system; those data to the extreme will be trimmed when making analysis. It is from the analysis that a final report with recommendations will be made. This researcher will conduct a hypothesis test for multiple samples using a one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA), comparing the significant value to 0.05.

Quantitative data analysis

The research methodology adopted in the research will have minimal quantitative data. However, the few that will be available will be analyzed using measures of central tendencies, measures of variability, and measures of relative standing. There will also be the use of bar/pie charts, graphs, statistical tables; comparison of variables, trends, and forecasting.

Presentation and Evaluation

Objective I: Motivational Theories

Maslow

A motivational theory of Maslow is used for research to identify employee maintenance in the call centre industry. Motivational theories are identified in this research. According to Maslow, an individual is also a part of the whole organization and studies should take this into consideration also4 In the call centre industry, which is a service-based industry, employee participation is a major factor for business performance and growth. Adequate motivational force must be provided to the employees for getting the maximum result and best performance from them, therefore a theoretical approach is necessary. According to Maslow’ theory, human behaviour and needs are continuously changing. After completing the existing needs, human beings will be looking for higher achievement. To reach the higher-level needs, completion of lower-level needs is necessary.

Thus for ensuring perfect service to the customers, participation from the employees is necessary. Attracting and sustaining of customers towards the business should require better servicing from the human resource personnel.

Human resource talent is the main success factor in the call centre industry. Employees are required to work with the requirements in the business firm. They may be working for overtime and night time. This will restrict their family life. They have to get more benefit from their service for getting satisfaction in their job. Without better satisfaction of employees’ personal needs, no better result can be expected from them for the long term. Info Call centre is applying this theory in their policy towards the employees. To get the best performance from their employees, adequate motivational forces are applied, such as incentives and higher wages for overtime and night time work. Better security is ensured in the business premises, and this provides greater inspiration to the employees for supplying better service to the customers, even in the irregular time period.

While taking major decisions relating to employment, the opinion and suggestions of employees are well considered by the management. 5 The time schedule for the employees are prepared by the group decision of employees, and thus suitable time schedule can be selected by the employees themselves. No managerial pressure is imposed on employees in selecting the time schedule. 6

Herzberg

The theory of Herzberg on employee motivation should be based on environmental needs. 7 The efficiency in the working of employees is based on the environment. A comfortable working environment is provided by Info Call in its premises for its employees, and it ensures better performance of their employees.

In the call centre industry, the person caring of an employee by management through the supply of food, snacks and coffee will prevent their dissatisfaction. They will respond positively to this approach. By recognizing this fact, Info Call arranged all these in their premises freely to the workers. The exploitation of employees in the call centre industry is a well-recognized concept. Monotonous work nature and lack of job security are other problems in the call centre industry.

The productivity of the workers can be improved through participation in the decision-making process. In case of Info Call for which the employee participation in the decision-making process is ensured supporting this concept. The performance of employees is well improved in Info Call by considering their ideas and suggestions in the business operations.

Hygiene factors are highly important for keeping the employees satisfied as human beings are hygienic in nature. An employment situation possessing hygienic condition should influence the employees in a positive manner. In the concept of the efficient working environment, hygiene factors are an important topic. But according to Herzberg, hygiene factors are not motivating the employees in any manner. In a condition were lower-level needs of the employees are met by the company, and adequate hygiene conditions are arranged, the employees may not be satisfied if there is no chance of fulfilling self-esteem goals. Even the lower-level needs and hygiene factors are not provided; if self-esteem needs are met, it is sufficient for employee motivation. Herzberg suggests that in call centres hygiene factors are given greater importance, but it provides no motivation to the employees. It is mainly due to the employees are not interested in the participative decision-making process. 8

Herzberg has classified employee performance into two basic areas, satisfaction and motivation. “According to the Two Factor Theory of Frederick Herzberg people are influenced by two factors, satisfaction and psychological growth was a factor of motivation factors”. 9(Frederick). In the Info Call centre, providing a clean and hygienic work atmosphere along with other factors like snacks, coffee and other small extras will only help in satisfaction and not the motivation of employees.

As per the interview results, the employees at the call centre are primarily motivated by the money or compensation they get. So the management should be able to have a balance between satisfaction and motivation. Herzberg suggests that in call centres hygiene factors are given greater importance, but it provides no motivation to the employees. It is mainly due to the employees are not interested in the participative decision-making process. 10

In the case of Info Call centre, the motivational factors are very important for attaining customer perceptions. As per the concept of Herzberg, along with hygiene factors in the working environment, Info Call Center wants to adopt employee motivation by providing a better opportunity for self-development of the employees as well as their meeting their self-esteem goals.

Inefficient workers should be dismissed from their job without any compensation. This will result in social security problems. The personal goals can be sacrificed for staying in the job. Hertzberg has the opinion that call centres are not providing any motivation to the employees even though the hygiene factors are well-considered. The case study of Info call reveals that it is not true.

Hygiene factors and good salaries are also ensured by the firm to the employees. Social cafes are arranged on the premises for getting relaxation in the job. Better career opportunity is provided by the firm through the development and promotional plans.

While analyzing the case study of Info call centre, we revealed that this is really fact. Inefficient workers should be dismissed from their job without any compensation. This will result in social security problems. The personal goals can be sacrificed for staying in the job. Hertzberg has the opinion that call centres are not providing any motivation to the employees even though the hygiene factors are well-considered. The case study of Info call reveals that it is not true.

SWOT Analysis

This is an analysis of the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats faced by an organization in the present marketing environment. 11 This information is gathered from the primary.

Strengths
  • Info Call is the first call centre in Bahrain, and it has long experience in the contact centre industry. These factors act as a competitive advantage of the company in the industry.
  • Agents of Info Call are able to provide call centre services in four languages: Arabic, English, Tagalog and Hindi
  • Providing flexible, adaptable, and effective service-oriented solution to the clients ensures maximum customer satisfaction
  • Info Call starts their business relationships with their clients through personal, email or phone in order to get together. By collecting all the information relating to the clients, proper research will be carried out by them. Through this research, a correct message will be developed intimating the features of the client. 12
  • By analyzing quarterly CSI index regularly, customer satisfaction is periodically ensured. Rendering flexible, adaptable and effective service-oriented solution to the clients ensure maximum customer satisfaction.
Weaknesses
  • As a relatively newly established company, the management of the company is not well acquainted with the correct business strategies and operations.
  • Their call centre is a new business in the market. Thus customers are not well informed of the possibilities of the services of Info Call for their business operations. It will be challenging for Info Call to inform the client firms about the benefits of using their outsourcing services.
  • The publicity budgets of the company are not enough for meeting the huge financial requirements. For developing efficient staff, adequate personnel training should be provided, and this will increase the financial expenses.
  • In this industry, customer service is not important, and most of the clients are offending or conservative in nature, and they are reluctant to expose the details of their firms to the call centre service firms.
  • Most of the clients of the enterprise are locally centred, and the scope for expanding the business is restricted.
  • Financial sources of the company are mainly derived from debts and liabilities. Thus financial liability of the company is more than the industry standard. It will restrict the chances of the company to enter in risky projects.
  • Lack of proper premises is another weakness that affects the operations of the business negatively.
Opportunities
  • The targeted customer groups of Info Call include Banks, Airlines, Insurance, Support services, Restaurants, IT and Telecom industries. Importance of customer care services in these industries is increasing at a higher level, and it provides greater opportunity to the business growth of Info Call centre.
  • They have the opportunity for expanding the business operations in more sectors of the industry.
  • The utility of call centre services is now getting more publicity among different industries. The present business environment is highly related to customer perception, and for this better customer satisfaction is necessary. More and more industries are identified this and trying to make their customer service more standardized through adopting the services of call centre business firms.
Threats
  • Lack of reliability among the industry. For ensuring effective message services, all the information relating to the client firm is necessary for Info Call. This creates problems relating to exploring the business strategies of client firms to the outsiders.
  • For getting customer acceptance, Info Call wants to create goodwill in the industry in terms of reliability and effectiveness. Clients feel that giving their information and data to a third party is sensitive and confidential, and must always remain inside the company.
  • The client wants to get the call centre services within the client’s premises itself. It will be restrictive to the normal business operations of the company.
  • Competitors, staff turnover, and system stability are other threats to business operations.

The chart below shows the elements that InfoCall should consider when developing strategies for improving customer satisfaction.

The elements that InfoCall should consider when developing strategies for improving customer satisfaction

ANOVA analysis

The data below shows how different industries range the service of InfoCall as well as their main motivator to contract the company’s services. There are five motivators selected, and three main industries were selected for the analysis. The following was the outcome:

Service industry Manufacturing industry Public services
Efficiency 6.9 8.3 8.0
Quality of service 5.4 8.8 8.5
As a business re-engineering tool 5.8 7.8 8.1
As an outsourced service 4.6 9.2 6.9
As a management tool 4.0 6.5 9.3
Average 5.34 7.72 8.56

The resulting ANOVA is:

Source SS DF MS F
Treatment 27.897 2 13.949 9.59
Error 17.452 12 1.454
Total (Corrected) 45.349 14 779.041 1
Correction factor 779.041 1

The test statistic is the F value of 9.59; this was attained using an Alpha of.05; the statistic F is F.05; 2, 12 = 3.89 from the F statistic, The p-value for 9.59 is.00325, so the test statistic is significant at that level, it can be found that the test is much larger than the critical value.

The deviation resulted in the rejection of the null hypothesis of equal population means. The conclusion is that there is a statistical collaboration between customer and employee/management perception.

Statement of Conclusion

The research on customer perceptions of Info Call centre business reveals that there are opportunities for expansion of the business in the call centre industry. Customers are expecting to get accurate and reliable services with appropriate quality. Innovative technology in the call centre industry will be supportive for developing and modifying the business operations of Info Call centre.

The managerial questionnaire was highly useful for this research as it provided necessary details about the internal strength and weakness of Info Call in the industry. The motivational strategy of Info Call is well identified from this questionnaire. Analysis of internal strength and weaknesses of the company reveals that as the first one in the industry, Info Call is occupying competitive strength in operations and customer acceptance.

The call centre industry is in the introductory stage of its lifecycle. It provides both opportunity and threats to the firms in the industry. Most of the targeted customers of Info Call are ignorant about the applicability of services of Info Call for strengthening their customer care service.

Customer perception in the services of Info Call centre can be ensured with improvement in the services through modified technology and better-trained staff personnel. The company is required to modify its service plans in a cost-effective manner. Promotional measures have to be adopted for informing the clients about the need for outsourcing of customer care services in the present business conditions. Adequate finance must be ensured for the modification of business while preparing budgets.

The services can be improved through the supply of sufficient training and talent development opportunity to the employees. Motivation must be given to the staff personnel, through self-development opportunity, incentives and additional financial benefits. Adoption of innovative technology for carrying out the operations will enhance the speed and accuracy in customer care services. The motivational forces must be capable of achieving self-satisfaction to the employees. The target can be fixed for providing incentives to the employees, and this will motivate them to attain the target for their personal benefit.

In the call centre business, promotional measures have a stronger influence on the growth of the business. In the above, the line promotion, media such as television, radio, newspaper, etc. are used. Info Call Centre is adopting television, radios and newspapers for its business promotion. In order to select the most appropriate medium for its promotional strategy, the effectiveness of each of this promotional Media is to be identified separately. Identify the effectiveness of each of the Medias in attaining the targeted performance for promoting the business has to be identified on a percentage basis.

The political and economic factors that threaten Info Call centre are the policies of the government that will result in increased competition. In the social context, lack of exposure to the outside world and its way of doing business are the main problems or threats. With regard to technical factors, the company can face a loss of business due to the higher level of technology of our present clients. This can result in companies having their own call centres and result in loss of business due to lower levels of outsourcing.

The chart below shows the main elements that InfoCall should consider when developing customer loyalty on its products:

The main elements that InfoCall should consider when developing customer loyalty

The above 360 degrees customer management approach summarizes the main issues that InfoCall should look into to maintain its customers and probably enlarge its customer base.

Conclusion

From this research, we identified that the external business environment is supportive of the business growth of Info Call Centre. The stable political conditions in Bahrain provide an opportunity for developing a long term business strategy for attaining market growth in the industry. Economic conditions of the country are also ensuring successful business operations in the country free from financial risks. The social and technological development in the region is attractive for both foreign and local investors. This ensures greater opportunity for Info Call for developing and expanding their business operations. Analysis of internal strength and weaknesses of the company reveals that as the first one in the industry, Info Call is occupying competitive strength in operations and customer acceptance. But lack of long term experience in the industry, and the fact that its managerial personnel are not well acquainted with innovative ideas in the business restrict adoption of diversification in the operations of the company.

Action Plan

What Info Call Centre should do in such circumstances is to increase their own level of efficiency and also to increase awareness of outsourcing customer service to run call centres professionally. Customer perceptions can be addressed in the following manner. It is heartening to note that nearly 70% are interested in using call centre services. Info Call Centre takes the greatest care in protecting the information of customers. Marketing personnel need to stress this point to potential customers. They can even provide contact details of existing customers so that new customers can be assured of data privacy.

It is better to concentrate on the private sector, banks, and another category for the time being as they are the possible sector to become customers of the centre. The best way to inform (and most cost-effective) is the direct approach when compared to TV and internet advertising. Another task for the marketing department is to let the public know about the advantages of using call centre services. The focus can be on the private sector and the banking sector. Once headway has been made, focus on the ‘other sector’ can be done. The least propriety, for the time being, should be on the public sector.

Action Plan

Planning, objectives, focus, benefits, and difficulties

The attainment of the setout objectives was attained because of the planning, objective setting, and the focus that the research undertook; every stage was documented, and any challenges from it noted. There were a number of difficulties that were encountered during the study; they included time constraints, cost constraints, and compliant participants.

Time is one of the major constraints for this project since it has to be completed within a short span of time. The major clients of the Info call are Banks, Airlines, Insurance and other major IT companies, so it will be difficult to approach them during their working hours. By interrupting them during their busy schedules, sometimes their responses might get corrupted.

The major weaknesses of this research may include the lack of accuracy of the data. Since the data may not be directly linked to the exact environment within which the firm works, therefore, I would be strained through a lot of data to find out the correct information to present it in a presentable format. However, I believe it would have minor influence over my research as this research would involve an analysis of the strategic management theories and tools.

However, with consistency and clarity of the objectives, the research was successful.

Recommendation for Further research

The research has offered insight on how customer perception has shaped their level of utilization of InfoCall Company; the same can be generalized for other companies in the same industry as well as in the service sector of the global world economy. However, there is much deficit on how the external environment shapes the perception, motivation, and attitude of service industry employees; managers and junior staffs. No research conducted to evaluate whether the employees in the sector are changing with time as may be expected by the contemporary business environment. The reason that makes the research justifiable is after the recognition of the role played by employees in offering high-quality services to customers. There is a close link between the quality of service received by customers and the attitude, perception, experience and general conduct of employees in the sector. The relationship needs to be evaluated further.

Bibliography

Hall, Dave, and Rob Jones, eds. Business Studies Third Edition. Ormskirk Lancs: Causeway press limited. 2004

John, Anderson. Management director. Personal Interview. 2008.

US Department of State. 2002. Bahrain: Profile. Web.

Business in Bahrain. 2008. Bahrain. Web.

Info Call Ends Successful Participation at MEFTEC 2008 in Bahrain. 2001. Free Press Release. Web.

. 2007. StatPac Inc. Web.

. 2008. Investopedia. Web.

Info Call. 2008. Info Call.

Brack, Cris. Introduction to Forest Sampling. 1996. Web.

Frederick, Herzberg. . Value Based Management.net. 2009. Web.

Hughes, Richard L., and Beatty, Katherine Colarelli. Becoming a Strategic Leader. John Wiley and Sons. 2005.

Appendices

Figure 1

Excerpt from the survey conducted on the customer’s perceptions on October 17, 2008.

A questionnaire was constructed to find out the extent and the nature of customer perceptions in the call centre industry.

Using a stratified random sample, only customers in the call centre industry of Bahrain is taken into consideration in this research. Out of the total customers, 40 customers were selected on a random sampling basis.

Only questions important for this project design are shown in this excerpt.

Pro Forma Questionnaire:

    1. The age group of individual customers
  • 21 – 30
  • 31 – 40
  • 41– 50
  • 51 – 60
  • >60
    1. Main profession:
  • Banking
  • Private sector
  • Public sector
  • Others
    1. How did you find out about Info Call?
  • Newspapers/Magazines
  • Television
  • Internet
  • Recommendations/friends
  • Billboards
  • Direct Mailing
  • Personal selling (SMS, phone calls)
  • Other

4. Do you well informed about the services of Info Call Centre?

  • Yes
  • I am not informed about all their operations
  • No, I don’t know anything about the services of Info Call centre

5. a. Would you be interested in call centre services of Info Call

  • Yes
  • No

5. b. If No, Why not?

  • Higher cost for services
  • Risks of exposure to business strategies
  • No need for external services
  • Other (Please specify) ———————————-

Table Showing the Results of Customer Questionnaires:

Results

Profession Age Knowledge of info call Well-informed Interested Reasons for Disinterest
Banking 31 – 40 Personal selling Partially Yes
Banking 41- 50 Personal selling Yes Yes
Public sector 51- 60 Personal selling Partially No Higher cost for service
Private sector 21 – 30 Television Partially Yes
Banking 31- 40 Personal selling No Yes
Others 21- 30 Television No Yes
Banking 51 – 60 Personal selling Partially No Others
Private sector > 60 Personal selling No Yes
Private sector 31- 40 Television Yes Yes
Public sector 21- 30 Personal selling Yes No Risks of exposure
Others >60 Newspaper/Magazines No Yes
Others 51 – 60 Personal Selling Yes Yes
Private sector 41 – 50 Newspaper/Magazines Partially No No need for external service
Banking 21- 30 Billboards No Yes
Banking 51- 60 Internet Yes No Risks of exposure
Others 21- 30 Newspaper/Magazines Partially No
Private sector 41 – 50 Billboards Yes Yes
Public sector 31- 40 Internet Partially Yes
Banking 51 – 60 Other Partially Yes
Others > 60 Other No Yes

Pie Charts showing the results of customer questionnaires:

Results (Graphical)

Interests in services of Info Call centre

  • Interested (14) 70 %
  • Not Interested (6) 30 %
Interests in services of Info Call centre

Reasons for no interest

  • Risks of exposure 40 %
  • Higher costs 20 %
  • No need for external service 20 %
  • Others 20 %
Reasons for no interest

Customers interested

  • Profession:
  • Banking 27 %
  • Public sector 13%
  • Private sector 30 %
  • Others 30%
Customers interested

Information about the Info call centre

  • Well Informed 30%
  • Only partial information 40%
  • Not at all 30%
Information about the Info call centre

Customers not interested

Profession

  • Banking 28.6%
  • Public sector 66.6%
  • Private sector 20%
  • Others 20%
Customers not interested

Knowledge of Info Call

  • Television 15%
  • Personal Selling 40%
  • Internet 10%
  • Others 10%
Knowledge of Info Call

Main Results:

The following table shows the results of the managerial questionnaire:

Field Company strategy
Clients Characteristics Delinquent/conservative / restricted to exposures, customer service is not important. It is the main obstacle for the business.
Employee Motivation Keep on changing their incentive schemes, increasing their compensation package is the main challenge.
Targeted customers Banks / Airlines / Insurance / Support services / Restaurants / IT / Telecom etc…
Measuring Staff’s performance MIS reports, quizzes, and appraisals
Differentiation from competitors First call centre in Bahrain, long term experience in the contact centre industry
Monitoring of customer satisfaction CSI (customer satisfaction index) quarterly

Below are the main results and findings of the customer questionnaires (refer to the customer questionnaire and the graphical representations )

The customers surveyed were from the following sectors, namely: the banking sector, the private, sector, the public sector, and other sectors. The ‘other sector’ included all those areas than did not belong to the sectors mentioned here and included non-profit organizations and individuals.On the whole, it is heartening to note that nearly 70% of those surveyed were interested in call centre operations for their business, official, and personal interests. The main reason why people were not interested was because of privacy concerns. It appears that people were afraid that their personal information might be compromised.

  • 40% felt that this was the reason for lack of interest.
  • 20% said that they did not feel to require the services of a call centre while a further
  • 20% felt that the costs involved did not justify using call centre services.
  • 20% had diverse reasons for not using such services.
  • The industry-wise classification of those using call centre operations in Bahrain was banking (27%), public sector (13%), private sector (30%), and the rest belonging to other sectors. Another factor that Info Call Centre should take into consideration is that only 30% were quite knowledgeable of call centre operations.
  • 40% had some basic knowledge, while the rest was not informed about the benefits of using call centre services. If an analysis is made of those not interested in call centre operations, the public sector leads with nearly 67%, followed by the banking sector with 28%.
  • Nearly 80% of the private sector were interested in using a call centre for their businesses. Another relevant finding of how the respondents found about call centres is given here.
  • Personal selling (40%) was the most important activity that led to information about call centre activity followed television (15%), with internet and other methods with 10% each.

Info Call Customer Questionnaire

As part of the HND in Business requirements, students must complete an investigation. I will use the results of this following questionnaire as a source to assist in my research. Your opinion is of high importance to this study, and all the information that is given out in this questionnaire is of high confidentiality and is for private use only. Thank you for taking the time to fill this questionnaire.

    1. Company Nationality:
  • Local
  • Gulf
  • Foreign
    1. What age group do you belong to?
  • 21 – 30
  • 31 – 40
  • 41 – 50
  • 51 – 60
  • 60+
    1. What is your profession/main line of business?
  • Banking
  • Private sector
  • Public sector
  • Other

If other, please specify.

__________________________________________________________.

    1. What is your average income per annum?
  • 50,000 – 200,000
  • 200,000 – 400,000
  • 400,000 – 600,000
  • 600,000 – 800,000
  • 8000,000 – 1,000,000
  • More than 1,000,000
    1. How long have you been using Info Call?
  • one week
  • One month
  • Six months
  • One year
  • Two years
    1. What services does Info Call provide you with?
  • Inbound
  • Outbound
  • Inbound and outbound
    1. How would you rate the price of the service?
  • Low priced
  • Reasonably priced
  • Expensive
  • Very expensive
    1. How does Info Call charge you?
  • per call
  • per agent
  • per hour
  • other

If other, please specify.

____________________________________________________________________.

    1. Is this your first time using Info Call’s services?
  • Yes
  • No
    1. What is the primary reason for choosing Info Call?

______________________________________________________________.

    1. Would you recommend Info Call’s services to your clients, friends and relatives?
  • Yes
  • No

If not, why?

______________________________________________________________.

    1. How did you find out about Info Call?
  • Newspapers/Magazines
  • Television
  • Internet
  • Recommendations/friends
  • Billboards
  • Direct Mailing
  • Personal selling (sms, phone calls)
  • Other

If other, please specify.

______________________________________________________________.

    1. How often do you use Info Call services?
  • Daily
  • Weekly
  • Monthly
  • Annually
    1. Before using this Info Call service, have you used other services?
  • Yes
  • No

If you used a different service, which service is better? Specify why.

_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________.

    1. Are your calls:
  • within the country
  • abroad
  • both
    1. How long does it take them to answer your calls?
  • 2-3 seconds
  • 5-10 seconds
  • 15-30 seconds
  • 30-60 seconds
  • more than 1 minute
    1. What is the wait hold time?
  • 10 – 20 seconds
  • 21 – 40 seconds
  • 41 – 60 seconds
  • more than 1 minute
    1. Rate how strongly you agree or disagree with the following statements. (5 = strongly agree, 1 = strongly disagree)
Rate how strongly you agree or disagree with the following statements

If you answered 1-3, please specify why.

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________.

    1. What improvements would you like to see?

___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________.

    1. How long does it take Info Call to correct faults to the system?
  • the same day
  • within a week
  • a month
  • longer
    1. What are the main problems you face by Info Call?

___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________.

    1. Are there any specific periods during the year in which your sales are elevated from the services offered by Info Call?
  • Yes
  • No

If yes, please specify when.

_______________________________________________.

    1. How much do you spend for Info Call services monthly?
  • 500 – 5,000 dinars
  • 5,000 – 10,000 dinars
  • 10,000 – 15,000 dinars
  • More than 15,000 dinars
    1. What would encourage you to spend more?

______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________.

    1. Would you use Info Call’s services again?
  • Yes
  • No

If no, please specify why.

_________________________________________________________________.

    1. What other suggestions do you have for Info Call to improve?

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________.

Thank you for your time and cooperation.

Manager Questionnaire

    1. How long have you been working for the Info Call?

Six months.

    1. What are the obstacles you are facing with your clients?

Delinquent / Conservative / restricted to exposures, customer service is not important.

    1. What is your staff turnover period cycle? If short periods, why do they leave? If long periods, why do they stay?

Turnover rate 15%, agents leave their jobs in 2 years once they burned out, top performers get a rotation and succession upper grade, and others just look for another job.

    1. What are your difficulties in maintaining your staff to continue being motivated?

Keep on changing their incentive schemes, increasing their compensation package.

    1. What is the number of calls answered per hour, per agent, per day?

640 / day – 80 / agent – 9 / hour

    1. What are the working hours of this service?

24/7.

    1. What is the most effective advertising media for Info Call? Why?

Direct sales through outbound telemarketing campaign, we need to identify customer requirements first, accordingly offer a consultancy service to them.

    1. How do you monitor your staff’s performance?

MIS reports quizzes and appraisals.

    1. How do you measure your staff’s effective responses to your clients?

Quality assurance and call scoring.

    1. What differentiates Info Call from its competitors?

First call centre in Bahrain, long experience in the contact centre industry.

    1. How many languages do your agents communicate with? Which languages do you provide?

Four languages (Arabic, English, Tagalog, Hindi)

    1. Are your clients local or international?

Local

    1. How long are you going to stay with this company? Why?

I am willing to acquire a partnership in the company once we make the first 1 million.

    1. Do you prefer the agents to be full-time or part-time workers?

Part-time workers

    1. Which one is most effective?

Part-time

    1. Do your clients continue reviewing their contracts or request your other services?

Yes, they sometimes ask for other services

    1. How do you monitor the satisfaction of your customers?

CSI (Customer Satisfaction Index) quarterly

    1. When a contract expires, does your client review it or ask for another service? Or never communicate with you again?

Yes, they review and negotiate a renewals

    1. What is the usual duration cycle of your client’s contracts?

Three months, six months, one year

    1. What is the percentage of your client’s repeat business?

50%

    1. What is the percentage of the client’s renewal and percentage of not renewal?

50 / 50

    1. What is the budget for your advertising compared to your turnover?

18%

    1. What is the percentage of your marketing out of your budget? Estimate.

25%

    1. Formulate the most significant company objectives.

Ensure complete customer satisfaction by partnering with our clients and deploying a service-oriented solution that is flexible, adaptable and enables us to achieve client goals in a competitive manner.

    1. State your own aims within the company

To employ my professional and analytical knowledge and experience to provide an identical working environment by streamlining the systems and procedures within the policy guidelines.

    1. How do your own aims help in achieving the company’s goals?

Maximize the profitability and reduce the risk elements

    1. What are your plans for further company development?

To become a regional contact centre

    1. How do you plan to expand the customers net?

Voice over IP gateway in GCC and the middle east

    1. What target audience is the company oriented for?

Banks / Airlines / Insurance / Support services / Restaurants / IT / Telecom etc…

    1. What competitors can you name?

Mena, Invita, 6 pence

    1. Are they powerful enough to press your company?

Yes

    1. What are your actions to prevent it?

Offer new ideas to the market place

    1. What are the most common problems within the company?

Debts and liabilities

    1. What steps have been undertaken to solve these problems?

Workforce management, maximize profit, reduce the cost

    1. Why do they appear, to your mind?

Management needs to drive the company forward

    1. Do you think the name of the provider is a happy choice?

Yes

    1. What another name would you suggest?

Hello Bahrain

    1. How much time do you need to assess a new employee’s capabilities?

Three months

    1. Do you encourage corporative parties, as a manager? Comment on it.

Yes, it financially helps the business at downtimes.

    1. Is there any fine / reward system for the workers? Comment on it.

Agent of the month (punctuality, sales, Quality, Creativity)

    1. Is it efficient? Why do you think so?

Yes, it builds the spirit of challenge among the team

    1. Would your client call again for further information?

Yes, only when it is required.

    1. Do you receive regular reports by the Call Center?

Daily, weekly, monthly and YTD

    1. Why do people aim to get employed for Info Call?

Info call ultimately leads them to a prestigious career where their analytical communication & creative skills are developed and applied

    1. Is there some training structure for the workers?

Yes

    1. How do you think, are the employees satisfied with their positions, and working conditions? Comment on it.

People would always look for a better position, but they are happy with what they do in Info call.

    1. What are the actions to keep them satisfied?

People would always look for a better position, but they are happy with what they do in Info call.

    1. Are there periods of increased and decreased sales? List them.

Summer / Ramadan and financial crisis are the times when sales go down.

    1. Taking into account the SWOT analysis, what threats and opportunities can you name?

Threats would be our competitors, staff turnover and system stability; however, the opportunities would always be the new ideas and the acquired sales achievements.

    1. What are the strengths and weaknesses of the business?

Strength is the experience of being the first call centre in Bahrain, and weaknesses are the huge liability the company accumulated during the last three years.

    1. Do you think the approaching world financial crisis would impact the market position of Info Call?

Yes, 100%

    1. What advantages and disadvantages do you think Info Call has over other call centres?

The main advantage is being the First call centre in Bahrain, long experience in the contact centre industry. However, the disadvantage has a deficiency in the financial statement for a long time.

Analysis of answers from the manager

There are many methods by which a study can be conducted to gather primary data. If the population that has to be studied is quite small, it can be included in its entirety. For example, if the study is about eating habits in one particular school or college, it is possible to ask each of the students about their habits by using a questionnaire. Even if the population is large, a complete survey about the entire population is possible if enough time and finance are available. An example would be the survey conducted by governments to gather demographic data about the population. Such surveys are referred to as census. But in most cases, only a sample of the population is taken for study. “Usually, the population is too large for the researcher to attempt to survey all of its members.

A small but carefully chosen sample can be used to represent the population. The sample reflects the characteristics of the population from which it is drawn.” (Sampling Methods). There are many types of sampling which can be used in a study, namely random sampling, systematic sampling, stratified (and random) sampling, convenience sampling, judgment sampling and quota sampling. The method used in this study with regard to the survey of customers is stratified random sampling. This is a “method of sampling, which involves the division of a population into smaller groups, known as strata. In stratified random sampling, the strata are formed based on their members sharing a specific attribute or characteristic.” (Stratified Random Sampling). In the case of managers, a simple interview was resorted to since enough relevant information can be obtained.

Interview with the manager

The manager who was interviewed has been with the company for the past six months. He holds a very senior position since he has the authority to look for suitable partners once the company has grown to a revenue of one million. Some of the questions were routine like a number of calls received and working hours, which is quite standard in such cases. The turnover rate is not very high at 15%, and the main reasons are burnout, promotions and staff looking for other jobs. But if the burnout issue is properly looked into, staff turnover can still be reduced. It is only natural that employees look for other jobs and hence nothing much can be done about it.

The company is doing a reasonably good job of staff motivation by innovative incentive schemes and increased compensation. The main clients of the company are as follows namely, Banks / Airlines / Insurance / Support services / Restaurants / IT / Telecom etc. The company uses direct marketing and telemarketing as a means of advertising themselves and uses approximately 25% of revenues for this purpose. The company has an effective performance evaluation method through MIS reports, quizzes and appraisals. They are also one of the first call centres in Bahrain and hence have the reputation of being quite experienced in the field. The main language is, of course, Arabic followed by English, Tagalog, and Hindi, even though most clients are local firms.

The manger is of the opinion that part-time workers are more productive. Customer satisfaction surveys are conducted to evaluate company performance. They have a 50% rate of repeat orders and renewal of business. The main issue now faced by the company is its debts and liabilities and hence an indication of poor cash flows. The main threats, according to the manger, were competing in the field and staff turnover. The company also focuses on the flexibility of options that will suit each client. The manager also feels that the current economic downturn facing the world economy will affect the business of the company also.

The results of the interview indicate that the company has a good strategy in place, but would benefit from careful financial planning. But it can be said that there is every chance for the company to perform well for a long time.

Analysis of customer questionnaires

All categories of customers of the company were included as per the demands of stratified random sampling methods. The maximum period of dealing with the company was one year, and nearly 50% of customer belongs to that category. This is a good indication that customers are relatively satisfied with its services. Almost 70% of customers use both inbound and outbound services of the company. Nearly 65% of respondents feel that the charges of the company are either expensive or very expensive. The management should take note of this fact. Surprisingly all customers are willing to recommend the company to other people.

This could be an indication of the infancy of this type of business in the country. The company’s direct marketing methods appear to be effective since 75% of the customers were acquired through this method. None of the respondents has tried the services of competitors. This is not good since they have no first-hand knowledge of the service provided by other companies in the field. This is also a fault in the selection of the sampling population. More customers who had used other firms should be included for a more accurate perception of the services of Info Call. The average monthly spend is 5000 to 10,000 dinars.

But the charges cannot be increased much because most customer already feels that current charges are high. The customers do not find any real fault with the quality of the staff and the way of their behaviour towards clients. Another area apart from staff turnover and poor cash flow is the time taken to correct faults. Almost 60% of respondents say that it takes up to a week to do this while a further 10% say that it takes up to a month. The most satisfying response with regard to Info Call is that 90% of customers are ready to do business with the company in the future also.

From both the analysis, it can be concluded that the company is on the right path to profitability and growth. The main factors that have to be corrected are high internal costs which cannot be matched by its current cash flows and the staff turnover. The number of customers will have to be increased since the present ones feel that charges are on the high side. The revenue increase is only possible with the addition of new customers. On the whole, Info Call is a well-managed company that can look at a long-time growth if the above-mentioned problems can be rectified.

Evaluating

Section 1: Assessment of the extent to which objectives have been met

For implementing a new project, risks related to uncertainty always exist with the business operations. The risk involved in the implementation of the projected plan is required to be identified and understood properly. Estimation of customer behaviour and interests in future will be reliable to a certain extent. There may be changes in the ongoing business conditions due to various factors such as unusual conditions in the global economy. By taking this uncertainty in projected data for the research on Info Call Centre business, detailed analysis of the internal and external environment was conducted. Information relating to the internal strength and weaknesses and financial stability of the company was directly collected from managerial personnel. This ensures the reliability of the data for decision making.

The research on customer perception of Info call centre is mainly based on primary data collected through customer survey and interview with managers. This is based on quota sampling method. Thus generalization of the opinion of a certain number of persons in the group may affect the accuracy and reliability of the conclusion from the research. The staff personnel may provide fraud information relating to the business operations due to the prestige issue. The internet sources on the environmental conditions in the call centre industry are reliable to a certain extent. Even though the accuracy of the data is reliable to a certain extent, quota sampling is a well-excepted method for research. Thus the research on the customer perception based on quota sampling is adaptable for the Info call managers for further actions.

Section 2: Effectiveness of the Planning and Developing Stages

  1. Lack of adequate and reliable data relating to the business operations of Info Call influenced the research process negatively.
  2. There is no external relevant data source available for the research, such as websites of the Info call business operations. Thus I had to take the data from the managerial survey as a major source of information for the identification of internal strength and weakness of Info Call. It suffers certain limitations.
  3. The staff personnel may provide fraud information relating to the business operations due to their prestige issue.
  4. The data collection in different areas of the research required much time and cost resource. I have to complete the research within the minimum time, and this would affect the research process.
  5. For getting a general conclusion on the call centre industry, other major firms in the industry have to be deeply analyzed. I think through the analysis of operations of other firms in the industry; a comparative study can be conducted. This will provide more accurate data to the operations and employees motivation of Info Call in comparison to other firms.

Section 3: Assessment of the Strengths and Weaknesses of the Report

Within the available time and resources, elaborate research is unlikely.

Section 4: Recommendations for future investigations

The analysis of the information from the manager’s interview reveals that the current position of the business is in better of the industry. Based on the analysis and data collected, it can hence be recommended that Info Call’s market share can be improved by concentrating on changing customer perception.

The research question that could be taken into account is: “How can Info Call measure the effectiveness of promotional Media adopted by it for attaining the promotion targets of its business?”

Action plan for this research topic:

  • In order to identify the effectiveness of each of the promotional Media of the business separately, the percentage of viewers for each of the promotional Media have to be identified.
  • For this purpose, a survey among the viewers of the promotional Media can be adopted as it produces results with approximate reliability.
  • The method of surveying among the customers about in which way they got information about the services of Info Call Centre can be adopted. It would be more adoptive as it gives more reliable results about the effectiveness of Medias in transferring the business message.

Recommendation

For ensuring customer perception in the services of Info Call Centre, it has to modify its service plans in a cost-effective manner. Promotional measures have to be adopted for informing the clients about the need for outsourcing of customer care services in the present business conditions. For this adequate finance must be ensured while preparing the budget. For improving the services, sufficient training and talent development opportunity must be provided by the company.

For motivating the staff personnel, along with self-development opportunity, incentives and additional financial benefits should be offered. Adoption of innovative technology for carrying out the operations will enhance the speed and accuracy in customer care services. Through rendering standardized, reliable services in a regular manner, trustworthiness should be developed by Info Call among the customers in the call centre industry. This will help to attract and sustain the customers for the long term. Competitiveness can be achieved in the industry through the economy in operations.

For becoming competitive in the industry, the economy in operations is essential. The services must be rendered in a cost-effective manner. For this financial expenditure has to be performed under the scrutiny of an efficient financial management team. A proper financial plan should be prepared by taking into account the financial needs and objectives of the company. Quarterly financial checking has to be carried out in the organization for identifying the status of the company in financial terms.

The motivational forces must be capable of achieving self-satisfaction to the employees. The target can be fixed for providing incentives to the employees, and this will motivate them to attain the target for their personal benefit. Trustworthiness should be developed by Info Call among the customers in the call centre industry; this will help to attract and sustain the customers for the long term. The services must be rendered in a cost-effective manner.

Footnotes

  1. InfoCall: Your Outsourcing Contact Center. 01 Mar. 2009.
  2. Call Centers Can Increase Customer Satisfaction Through Effective Conflict Management. 01 Mar. 2009.
  3. Miller, Robert L., and Brewer, John D. The A-Z of Social Research. Sage. 2003.
  4. Rungapadiachy, Dev M. Interpersonal Communication and Psychology. Elsevier Health Sciences. 1999. p.80.
  5. Employee Opinion Surveys Yield Important Insights. Go2. 2008.
  6. Theory 1: Maslow.
  7. Gawel, Joseph E. Practical Assessment, Research & Evolution: Herzberg’s theory of motivators and hygiene factors. PAREonline.net. 1997.
  8. Theory 2: Herzberg.
  9. Frederick, Herzberg. Two Factor Theory. Value-Based Management.net. 2009.
  10. Theory 2: Herzberg.
  11. Hughes, Richard L., and Beatty, Katherine Colarelli. Becoming a Strategic Leader. John Wiley and Sons. 2005. p.54.
  12. Info Call Ends Successful Participation at MEFTEC 2008 in Bahrain. Free Press Release. 2001.
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