GLOSSARY: Outsourcing

Relying on third-party resources to fulfill a business function.  Historically, the contact center function has been outsourced due to the fact that training and scripting can be standardized.  It has also been historically scrutinized due to resentment over the fact that outsourced labor effectively “steals” jobs from the United States, the language/cultural barriers associated with agents in foreign outsourcing hubs, and the perception that outsourced employees, as external resources, do not have intimate, nuanced product expertise.  The increased emphasis on culture and customer centricity may also discourage (or at least transform) outsourcing, as it suggests that the scripted, standardized, robotic approach to care is no longer acceptable.