呼叫中心外包已经发展了许多年了。但是，呼叫中心外包也许不是机构的正确选择。最近在SearchCRM.com网站举行的辩论中，专家Lori Bocklund说，外包能够帮助企业省钱和提供更好的服务。而专家Richard Snow争辩说，客户是公司的最佳资产，应该把客户留在公司内部。下面用SearchCRM.com网站的问答测验对自己进行一下测试，学习更多的有关外包的词汇并且练习根据这些知识做出决策。
- Nearshore outsourcing is the practice of getting work done or services performed by people in neighboring countries rather than in your own country. Many companies in the United States, for example, outsource work to Canada and Mexico. Geographic proximity means that travel and communications are easier and less expensive, there are likely to be at least some commonalities between the cultures, and people are more likely to speak the same language.
A core competency is fundamental knowledge, ability, or expertise in a specific subject area or skill set. For example, an individual who becomes certified as a Microsoft Certified Software Engineer (MCSE) is said to have a core competency in certain Microsoft systems and networks. Companies with specific strengths in the marketplace, such as data storage or the development of accounting applications, can be said to have a core competency in that area. The core part of the term indicates that the individual has a strong basis from which to gain the additional competence to do a specific job or that a company has a strong basis from which to develop additional products.
答案：商务流程外包（Business process outsourcing）
business process outsourcing
- Business process outsourcing (BPO) is the contracting of a specific business task, such as payroll, to a third-party service provider. Usually, BPO is implemented as a cost-saving measure for tasks that a company requires but does not depend upon to maintain their position in the marketplace. BPO is often divided into two categories: back office outsourcing which includes internal business functions such as billing or purchasing, and front office outsourcing which includes customer-related services such as marketing or tech support.
BPO that is contracted outside a company's own country is sometimes called offshore outsourcing. BPO that is contracted to a company's neighboring country is sometimes called nearshore outsourcing, and BPO that is contracted with the company's own county is sometimes called onshore outsourcing.
- For a given use of money in an enterprise, the ROI (return on investment) is how much profit or cost saving is realized. An ROI calculation is sometimes used along with other approaches to develop a business case for a given proposal. The overall ROI for an enterprise is sometimes used as a way to grade how well a company is managed.
If an enterprise has immediate objectives of getting market revenue share, building infrastructure, positioning itself for sale, or other objectives, a return on investment might be measured in terms of meeting one or more of these objectives rather than in immediate profit or cost saving.
转换到虚拟呼叫中心模式有许多好处。例如，My Twinn（一家高端玩具娃娃厂商）在2000年采用了虚拟呼叫中心模式。那一年，30%以上的查询电话转化为了订单，雇员转置率下降了88%，需要转到上一级的电话（由更高一级的雇员接听的）比1999年下降了90%。对于那些季节性比较强的公司来说，虚拟模式还意味着这些公司不必整年保持庞大的设施。例如，My Twinn在繁忙的圣诞节期间需要400个客户支持雇员。但是，在一年中的其余时间里，大约25个客户支持雇员就够了。
virtual call center
- A virtual call center is a call center in which the organization's representatives are geographically dispersed, rather than being situated at work stations in a building operated by the organization. Virtual call center employees may be situated in groups in a number of smaller centers, but most often they work from their own homes. This is an attractive arrangement for many employees: the hours are often flexible, and there's no dress code or commute. For the organization, the virtual call center model saves housing and equipment costs and can lead to lower employee turnover rates, which tend to be high for physical call centers.
Switching to a virtual call center model can be very beneficial. One example: My Twinn (a high-end doll manufacturer) went to a virtual model in 2000. That year, 30% more inquiry calls were converted to orders, employee turnover decreased 88%, and 90% fewer calls had to be escalated (transferred to a higher-level employee), compared to 1999. For companies whose business is highly seasonal, the virtual model also means that they don't have to maintain large facilities year-round. My Twinn, for example, requires over 400 customer support employees in their busy Christmas season, but only about 25 the rest of the year.
To appear professional and increase customer confidence, even bricks and mortar call centers attempt to present customers with a virtual representation of an organization's offices. The customer, dialing a customer service or technical support number, is given the impression that their call reaches a physical department within the organization, when in fact, it is likely to reach a company that outsources support for several different organizations. In the case of the virtual call center the customer's impression is even more illusory, as the number is quite likely to reach the kitchen of a stay-at-home parent, or the dorm room of a university student.
- 1) In customer relationship management (CRM), a virtual agent (sometimes called an intelligent virtual agent, virtual rep or v-rep) is a chatterbot program that serves as an online customer service representative for an organization. Because virtual agents have a human appearance and respond appropriately to customer questions, they lend automated interactions a semblance of personal service. Combining artificial intelligence (AI) with a graphical representation, virtual agents are increasingly used in CRM to help people perform tasks such as locating information or placing orders and making reservations.
Customer response to the use of virtual agents has been largely positive. Typically, people talk to a virtual agent longer than they do to an actual person, perhaps because talking to a responsive, personalized computer program is a novelty. Virtual agents are usually scripted to respond to a wide variety of questions and remarks. (For example, they occasionally receive proposals of marriage.) If a customer becomes frustrated by the scripted responses and is rude, a virtual agent, like its human counterpart, may appear to lose its patience. For instance, when a customer calls a virtual agent stupid, one of the possible responses is: "I'm an inanimate object. You're hurling insults at an inanimate object. Which one of us is more likely to fit Webster's definition of stupid?"
According to eGain, a virtual agent provider, an automated representative can reduce support costs, encourage self-service, encourage customer loyalty, and serve as a branding tool for the enterprise.
2) Virtual agent is also used to refer to a human agent who works over the Internet at some distance from the employer's organization.
答案：存储服务提供商（Storage service provider）
在互联网上，存储服务提供商是向其它公司提供计算机存储空间和相关的管理的公司。除了存储本身之外，存储服务提供商还提供定期的备份和存档，某些公司还提供把多家公司位置的数据整合在一起的能力，这样所有地点都可以高效率地共享这些数据。客户可以按月付费或者按照存储的数据量付费。两家主要的存储服务提供商是StorageNetworks公司和Managed Storage International。
storage service provider
- Also see two related terms, application service provider and management service provider.
On the Internet, a storage service provider (SSP) is a company that provides computer storage space and related management to other companies. In addition to the storage itself, SSPs typically offer periodic backup and archiving and some offer the ability to consolidate data from multiple company locations so that all locations can share the data effectively. Customers may be billed a monthly rate and for each managed terabyte of storage. Two leading SSP companies are StorageNetworks and Managed Storage International.
Some companies specialize in providing limited storage service, such as periodic remote backup, to individual computer users and small businesses.
- An extranet is a private network that uses Internet technology and the public telecommunication system to securely share part of a business's information or operations with suppliers, vendors, partners, customers, or other businesses. An extranet can be viewed as part of a company's intranet that is extended to users outside the company. It has also been described as a "state of mind" in which the Internet is perceived as a way to do business with other companies as well as to sell products to customers.
An extranet requires security and privacy. These can include firewall server management, the issuance and use of digital certificates or similar means of user authentication, encryption of messages, and the use of virtual private networks (VPNs) that tunnel through the public network.
答案：总拥有成本（Total cost of ownership）
- TCO (total cost of ownership) is a type of calculation designed to help consumers and enterprise managers assess both direct and indirect costs and benefits related to the purchase of any IT component. The intention is to arrive at a final figure that will reflect the effective cost of purchase, all things considered. When you decide to buy a computer you may go through a TCO analysis: for example, the greater cost price of a high-end computer might be one consideration, but one that would have to be balanced by adding likely repair costs and earlier replacement to the purchase cost of the bargain brand.
TCO analysis originated with the Gartner Group several years ago and has since been developed in a number of different methodologies and software tools. TCO analysis performs calculations on extended costs for any purchase - these are called fully burdened costs. For the consumer's purchase of a computer, the fully burdened cost may include costs of purchase, repairs, maintenance, and upgrades. For the business purchase of a computer, the fully burdened costs can also include such things as service and support, networking, security, user training, and software licensing. The TCO has to be compared to the total benefits of ownership (TBO) to determine the viability of the purchase.
答案：应用服务提供商（Application service provider）
惠普、SAP和Qwest等公司已经组建了提供ASP服务的第一个主要的联盟。他们计划把SAP流行的R/3应用程序提供给网络中心。网络中心将把这个应用程序提供给其它企业。微软将允许某些公司以租赁或者按使用收费等方式提供其BackOffice产品，包括SQL Server、Exchange和Windows NT Server。
application service provider
-ASP is also an abbreviation for Active Server Page.
An application service provider (ASP) is a company that offers individuals or enterprises access over the Internet to applications and related services that would otherwise have to be located in their own personal or enterprise computers. Sometimes referred to as "apps-on-tap," ASP services are expected to become an important alternative, not only for smaller companies with low budgets for information technology, but also for larger companies as a form of outsourcing and for many services for individuals as well. Early applications include:
remote access serving for the users of an enterprise
An off-premises local area network to which mobile users can be connected, with a common file server
Specialized applications that would be expensive to install and maintain within your own company or on your own computer
Hewlett-Packard, SAP, and Qwest have formed one of the first major alliances for providing ASP services. They plan to make SAP's popular R/3 applications available at "cybercenters" that will serve the applications to other companies. Microsoft is allowing some companies to offer its BackOffice products, including SQL Server, Exchange and Windows NT Server on a rental, pay-as-you-use basis.
While ASPs are forecast to provide applications and services to small enterprises and individuals on a pay-per-use or yearly license basis, larger corporations are essentially providing their own ASP service in-house, moving applications off personal computers and putting them on a special kind of application server that is designed to handle the stripped-down kind of thin client workstation. This allows an enterprise to reassert the central control over application cost and usage that corporations formerly had in the period prior to the advent of the PC. Microsoft's terminal server product and Citrix's WinFrame products are leading thin-client application server products.