Procuring the services of an outsourced BPO or contact center vendor can be a time-consuming, labor-intensive process, given the ever-expanding vendor landscape and emerging nearshore and offshore regions.
Blockchain is proving to be a viable solution to help procurement teams manage the process more efficiently and cost-effectively. Blockchain certification, a new standard, can also give outsourced BPO and contact center vendors a leg up on their competition when submitting RFPs and RFIs.
How Blockchain Benefits CX Vendor Procurement
Applying blockchain offers companies several benefits, the main one being that it can ensure data accuracy and integrity. Whatever is inside those "blocks" cannot be tampered with or changed.
From a procurement perspective, data on service providers and vendors can be very accurate and personalized, making the procurement process more robust. Procurement teams can use blockchain to verify data on vendors, which builds trust in the information vendors provide in RFPs or RFIs.
"Blockchain ensures consistency, that everything is more efficient and predictable and that the information they're providing is much more secure and transparent," says Mark Angus, CX strategist and author of the 2022 CX BlockchainTM Market Intelligence Report
. "There can be no way a vendor can say that they can offer specific services or claim that they're doing certain things without verification."
He adds that for any procurement department to have that access to information on their vendors is also quite important.
"It could be financial information or information in terms of the performance, their size, scalability, certifications — all of that data they can then have access to in the procurement environment," he says.
Why does blockchain matter in a CX environment?
A financial services company had multiple acquisitions that spread customer data throughout disparate, disconnected systems, leading to inconsistent customer experience delivery across its customer service channels.
The company used blockchain to connect the data and put it in a single location, promoting consistent omnichannel delivery and increasing its ability to upsell and cross-sell.
As a result of implementing blockchain, NPS and CSAT scores increased by 22%, AHT was reduced by 35%, and self-service resolution rates went up by 42%.
CX Blockchain Certification Benefits
It's clear that implementing blockchain in a CX environment offers benefits to procurement teams, but outsourced BPO and contact center vendors can also benefit from its use in several ways.
Vendors can differentiate themselves from competitors, especially when submitting RFPs or RFIs, by achieving a new standard: CX blockchain certification.
When submitting proposals, almost every BPO or contact center vendor talks the same game: people, process, and technology. That may have sufficed in the past, but in an era when Web 3.0, blockchain, and the metaverse are converging, BPO and contact center service providers that aren't blockchain market-ready could be left behind.
As the CX industry looks more closely at blockchain, procurement teams will no longer simply ask vendors if they are ISO 9000 certified or PCI compliant. Now, they will want to know how adept vendors are at using blockchain.
CX blockchain certification is a way to answer that, asserts Mark Angus.
"If you have blockchain certification as a CX provider, you can say to any procurement officer or manager that you can deliver highly personalized and beneficial CX services with accurate data about the customer that has not been tampered with and that is very much compliant," Angus says.
Security Risk Mitigation
Blockchain-certified providers can also lay claim to better data security.
"As a certified provider, you can also claim that you can mitigate those security risks, whether it's fraud or some sort of cybersecurity data breaching attack that may happen," he says.
Since blockchain makes all data verifiable, certification increases trust.
"With blockchain certification, in a procurement or proposal environment, it would be very clear from the data that can be accessed as to what that provider's strengths are, their fields of expertise," Angus says. "For example, if they say that they are good at inbound to outbound customer service, as opposed to inbound and outbound sales services, you will know that."
Follow the Green Building Industry's 'LEED'
Although blockchain certification may be a new concept in the CX industry, it's standard practice in others, including finance, healthcare, and retail.
A prime example is the U.S. Green Building Council
, which offers the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification.
LEED is a widely-used and accepted green building industry rating system that provides a framework for healthy, efficient, and cost-saving green buildings.
LEED provides a building audit, makes recommendations for improvement, and certifies those that comply. Because it has become an industry standard, more and more companies want to construct buildings that adhere. Certification provides advantages to facilities that aren't environmentally friendly. They have higher resale value, offer healthier indoor space, and qualify for tax breaks.
CX blockchain certification can follow the same process. Conduct an audit, follow up to see if the protocols, policies, procedures, and other criteria were implemented and working and that shortcuts weren't taken, and then award certification for one year to those who comply.
To be effective, certification should be comprehensive, covering all aspects of CX operations, including compliance, policies, processes and procedures, quality management, audits, and other factors.
In the same context, CX blockchain certification can help BPOs and contact centers increase NPS scores, decrease handle time, and improve other critical KPIs.
Vendors can include certification in RFIs and RFPs to win business. While everyone else says they are PCI-compliant and ISO 9000 certified, these entities can add CX blockchain certification to the list, giving them an edge.
Certification is not only for the vendor but also applies to BPO and contact center employees. Every stakeholder can receive certification training on the blockchain, giving them a career path, so they aren't destined to answer the phone 24/7/365. Being a contact center employee is no longer just a job; it's now a career.
Blockchain's ability to ensure data integrity and foster trust in outsourced vendor relationships can streamline procurement, saving time and making the process less labor-intensive. BPO and contact center vendors can also use blockchain to their advantage to become more competitive and market-ready. An industry-accepted CX blockchain certification standard is a critical component that can benefit both.