When it comes to running a business, there are two keys that apply, regardless of the type of business: Increasing revenues and decreasing total cost of operations.  Nearly everything revolves around these two premises, and being able to effectively perform both makes a business much more competitive than one who struggles with one of them (or both). There is no magic bullet to maintain these two, and certainly no “one-size-fits-all” approach, as each business has very different dynamics; however there are a few things that can certainly leverage different strengths. One of them is contact centers.


Why Call Centers?


Call centers are one of the few items that can be managed to increase revenue and decrease cost of operations simultaneously. Many departments, (e.g. marketing, sales) can increase revenues, but without decreasing the cost of operations. Other departments (like accounting and operations) can decrease the cost of operations but without increasing revenues. Because call centers can do both, they’re a vital part of any business and should be balanced with diligent consideration.   Call centers are both massive revenue generators and budget-conscious machines. One of the best measures to keep these costs under control is to outsource to India. This provides an excellent way to cut costs while still maintaining an excellent business reputation. Call centers from India have steadily grown in proficiency the last two decades, and have become a refined and efficient method to field inbound calls and tech support.


Why India?


Much hype has surrounded the 2014 elections, as the Bharatiya Janata Party swept 282 of the 543 seats in India’s Lok Sabha (House of People), the lower chamber of Parliament. The most important election result, however, was Prime Minister Narendra Modi, leader of the BJP. Modi has single handedly changed the landscape of business in India. While he is a very polarized individual, most Indians strongly feel as if he will increase the economy’s growth and create jobs.   As governor, Modi was highly successful in economic reforms to bring about prosperity. His policies cut child malnutrition 32% over the decade prior, and have increased the overall outcomes of primary schools. In addition to these, he has jump-started the economy and more than doubled agriculture. Considering the latter was the largest economic sector in his state as governor, this lends tremendous credence to his potential performance as prime minister. Finally, as governor, he increased the number of universities and government colleges from 35 to 123. It’s also noteworthy that the prime minister served as governor to a state with a population roughly similar to the UK and had the strongest social, civil and economic performance from 2001-2011 by nearly every available metric.


The New Focus


Modi’s focus has repeatedly centered on jobs and infrastructure. India currently has the second largest population in the world, with over 1.2 billion people. To add to this, India’s population growth has outpaced China’s for the last several decades, and will pass China’s as the most populous nation in the world circa 2028. Another important dynamic is that India has a population of around 600 million that is 28 and under – which will set the stage for the next several decades. This new generation will likely be much more focused on the technology booms that India has seen lately, which is where the economic focus will be. This adds weight  and support to Modi’s infrastructural changes, as they will ultimately reap the benefits.


Virtual Number India


Modi, in a July speech, has said that he intends to build 100 “smart cities.” These cities will have more effective transportation, technology, and productive use of resources. While the plans are ambitious (causing many opponents to be skeptical) Modi has performed in the past, and supporters hope he is able to deliver on the $1.2 billion pledge. Some of the ideas for this “smart” city include “sensors monitoring water levels, energy usage, traffic flows, and security cameras, and sending that data directly to administrators.” India aims to join other countries, like South Korea and China, who each have similar plans in various stages.   Others wonder why Modi has launched such a campaign when the infrastructure in many places is either deteriorating or non-existent. Modi has acknowledged this concern and is planning reforms to help basic needs such as reliable electricity and clean water in rural areas, in part by using the “smart city” approach. Moreover, as governor, he also “restructured utilities to make Gujarat India’s only state with almost universal 24 hour electricity.” It seems that Modi has a strong reputation to stand on in this area.


Virtual Number India


So how does all of this affect an American operation thousands of miles away? India leads the world in outsourced support operations, especially tech support and call centers. Time of day routing makes this an ideal operation for 24/7 NOCs and a truly seamless flow of data/call traffic. Time of day routing allows a business owner to switch to India during night time while American call centers close, as one option, or maintain continuous operations in India with an American headquarters, as another.   The most beneficial part of investing in a call center now is the upgrades that will accompany India’s infrastructure in coming years. It will take several years to begin to see improvements, but investing now will yield dividends, and this is the best time to invest for a higher ROI. Once India’s infrastructure is fully completed, it will attract more competition, which will drive rates higher. While this will still be a more comprehensive and cost effective alternative to other options, negotiating long-term contracts now provides a visionary appeal that will truly benefit your business long-term.   The best way to increase revenues and decrease cost of operations isn’t waiting until trends emerge, it’s cashing in on trends before they become apparent.