Outsourcing was once taboo, associated with cost-cutting and low quality — but today, 59% of companies work with an outsourcer. Modern business process outsourcers (BPOs) are not the call centers of the 90s, and many — such as our partners at Concentrix — match brands in empathy, customer-centricity, and technological capabilities. BPOs are here to stay, and they’re a critical part of most companies’ holistic CX strategy. In fact, BPO spend is slated to grow past half a trillion dollars over the next decade.
And yet, it remains difficult to efficiently manage staffing coverage — especially in a multi-BPO environment. Ask any vendor manager about their day-to-day and you’ll likely hear about spreadsheets upon spreadsheets to manage vendor commitments, billed hours, and more. In extreme cases, we’ve heard of companies that have implemented (and paid for!) WFM tools for all of their BPOs.
These very real pain points served as the central inspiration behind our biggest launch to date, which we’ve rolled out in two parts. Part 1 of the launch addressed WFM integrations, which are critical for the visibility in-house and outsourced teams desperately need. Part 2, detailed below, brings it all together in an end-to-end solution.
We’re proud to introduce to you Assembled for Vendor Management, the first and only product designed to give CX teams visibility into staffing, real-time metrics, and productivity across their BPO network.
Powering WFM and vendor relationships with great data
After speaking with countless workforce and vendor managers, we saw just how much friction resulted from what we’re calling The Data Problem. Teams often live in disconnected tools and/or spreadsheets, which means they’re working off of different — and worse yet, incomplete — data. This makes tracking and managing metrics difficult and increases the likelihood of problems around billing reconciliation. We want outsourcing operations to feel equally strategic and seamless, which is why we’ve focused on building a product with the best, most accurate data foundation.
What it comes down to is this: the more reliable the data, the better the partnership between in-house and outsourced teams. We’ve designed our solution to empower this crucial collaboration, ensure shared accountability, and help modern CX teams break out of dangerous siloes. It’s also why we’ve built this offering on top of our WFM platform, as we believe that workforce and vendor harmony is a necessity.
Say it with us: partnership over vendorship!
A single source of truth that drives results
Assembled’s WFM integration gives me real-time data on our BPOs’ schedules, shrinkage, adherence, and more — visibility I never had before. I can now see months ahead, gain insights to optimize our budget, and ensure maximum coverage during peak periods.
Beau Burton, Senior Vendor Relationship Manager at Robinhood
Launched in May, the WFM integration experience ensures that workforce and vendor teams across multiple sites have an up-to-the-minute source of truth for agent schedules, staffing coverage, and more. As the only platform to natively integrate with BPOs and other WFM platforms (including NICE IEX and Verint), Assembled allows you to automatically sync granular schedule data in real time. The result is a single, standardized view of activities such as productive time, breaks, and offline work — regardless of which BPO an agent works for. Find more details about WFM integrations here.
This kind of visibility isn’t just for convenience — it actually drives real results. For the Wyze team, having a single source of truth based on performance and productivity led to an annual BPO cost reduction of $1.2 million, as the team finally had access and insight into what was happening on the vendor side.
Make capacity planning seamless with BPO Planner
Stop us if you’ve heard this one:
WFM: “You’re short on supply this month!”
BPO: “Well, your forecast was off.”
Unfortunately, this is an all-too-common situation facing WFM and vendor teams today. And because they lack the tools to better collaborate and communicate when it counts, the problem worsens each time requirements are locked in or the monthly bill arrives.
That stops today with the launch of our BPO Planner, which acts as a shared interface for in-house teams to visualize, allocate, and communicate requirements with BPOs. This makes it easier than ever to track committed and actual scheduled hours relative to staffing requirements. Teams are also able to upload capacity plans for BPOs to assess and respond to, eliminating the need for endless email threads and convoluted spreadsheets and ensuring clear, transparent communication.
Beyond the time and stress saved, BPO Planner is designed to, quite literally, put you and your outsourced teams on the same page. With a shared interface that provides shared context, you’re guaranteed to have higher-bandwidth interactions with your BPOs.
Assembled’s Vendor Management solution has been a game-changer for our organization. It has saved our real-time analysts at least 10 hours weekly of manual work. BPO Planner has also allowed us to easily plan schedules at least two months in advance, giving us more time to allocate headcount and resourcing.”
Marivic Bautista, WFM Supervisor at Concentrix (BPO)
Bring accountability to BPOs via real-time states
Historically, BPO adherence has felt like a black box — inaccessible and opaque. With our new real-time analysis feature, teams have full insight into adherence across BPO sites or queues. Even if BPOs utilize their own WFM tool, Assembled’s API pulls real-time states in easily.
And in the spirit of partnership, you’re also able to grant restricted access to BPO real-time analysts (RTAs) so they can assess site-specific real-time states and detailed agent-level adherence. This eliminates guesswork and provides real-time visibility, empowering informed, effective actions.
We put Assembled's real-time dashboard on every TV screen across our BPO call centers and our in-house support team. When there are a lot of calls in the queue, agents have the visibility to know when times are busiest. Agents also know the best time to take a lunch break.
Bruce Wagner, Director of Support at Wyze
Manage BPOs to optimal outcomes with Heatmaps
Optimizing BPO performance starts by identifying root causes before it’s too late, without finger-pointing. With Heatmaps, you’re able to easily visualize staffing coverage through the lens of adherence, productive hours, and much more. With a click of a drop-down, you’ll have an informed sense of why a BPO site or queue isn’t meeting expectations. This equips workforce and vendor managers with critical data for future planning and retroactive analysis of staffing coverage, and even helps with monthly invoice reconciliation!
Better collaboration, better customer experiences
As we increasingly acknowledge the critical role that both in-house teams and BPOs play in shaping customer experiences, fostering a strategic and seamless partnership between them has never been more important. Assembled for Vendor Management is explicitly designed to enhance this partnership by providing a single, unified data source. This shared data fosters transparency and trust, laying a solid foundation for collaboration and mutual understanding.