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Outbound Call Centers

For the outbound call center, agents must be proactive; that is, they need to take initiative. The successful outbound agent has a different personality than the ideal inbound agent. Even if the nature of their outbound work is not specifically in sales, they still need a sales mentality. They need to engage the called party, lead them towards a stated objective, and deal well with rejection - some of which may be personally directed. Outbound call centers rely on predictive dialers to place calls. Outbound centers have reduced hours of operation, limited by law and the demands of specific campaigns. Here agents are scheduled as needed to complete a requisite number of calls within a certain window of time.

There has been much talk about the avalanche of recent legislation to regulate (that is, limit) outbound calling, historically called telemarketing. There is a wide degree of differing opinions on how this has affected the outbound call center industry. At one extreme, the doomsayers assert that the industry has been decimated, sending millions into unemployment and leaving outbound calling as an insignificant fraction of the overall call center industry. The opportunists proclaim that this legislation has forced marginal players out of the industry, or at least pushed them to inbound work, and made outbound calling easier. This is because the 70 million or so who signed up for the Do Not Call (DNC) list weren’t buying anyway. Those remaining, who can still be called, have a higher propensity to buy. Yes, jobs have been lost and centers closed, but much of that, they assert, would have happened regardless of this legislation.

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