5 Keys to Effective Multilingual Customer Support - TELUS International Europe

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  • 5 Keys to Effective Multilingual Customer Support

    In today’s global business environment where customer diversity and global operations are increasingly common, call centers need to offer some level of multilingual support to remain competitive. A multilingual outsourcing call center is an organization that provides various services through different language offerings to meet the needs of customers speaking different languages.

    Providing multilingual support allows call centers to continue servicing their existing client base while also going after new business opportunities and generating additional revenue. The value added benefits, however, come with more complex business processes and operations in the contact center itself.

    In this article, we’ll discuss the key success factors necessary to ensure the successful functioning of a multilingual contact center.  TELUS International Europe is a multilingual contact center providing customer service globally from one location. We have over 1000 customer service representatives that speak over 30 languages. A closer look at TELUS International Europe’s operation will showcase the success factors behind the functioning of a leading European multilingual outsourcing company.

    So what are the keys to success of a multilingual call center operation?

    1. Tailored Recruitment Process

    During the implementation phase of a multilingual customer care project, the client provides specifications of the profile that the HR department seeks to recruit. Throughout the recruitment process, client input helps to ensure that the people with the right fit have been recruited.

    For multilingual project right, fit is especially crucial because of the importance of culture – agents have to provide customer service for people not only speaking different language but also belonging to a different culture, who may have particular expectations for customer service.

    At TELUS International Europe, the recruitment process is adapted to the needs of the client, with specific recruitment channels selected for each client (universities, social networks, local and international recruitment agencies, etc.). One of the crucial steps in the recruitment process is the mandatory language test where language skills are tested and evaluated. Main points are vocabulary, grammar, accent, understanding and writing skills. A client representative either  approves or rejects the candidate based on their language skills.

    2. Call Center Training

    TELUS International Europe’s academy offers a great illustration of various trainings for multilingual customer support. The modules included in the training program cover skills in customer service, sales techniques for both B2C and B2B, multitasking and empathy. For a multilingual customer support project, a full range of training courses ensures the best possible start for a multilingual customer service representative. Emphasis is put on cultural trainings done by native teachers.

    As part of the training and coaching plan, our company has implemented a range of ongoing training targeted at refreshing knowledge and testing capabilities of the agents. Constant learning is a key success factor for maintaining high quality of customer service. At TELUS International Europe, each employee receives an average of 100 hours of training per year, including soft skills training, language, cultural training and management skills training.

    3. Quality Monitoring

    Quality control is a key success factor for any call center. At TELUS International Europe, quality control is done by a quality department that analyzes the interactions with end customers to ensure a high level of language skills and customer service.

    The quality department conducts a minimum of two checks per week per agent. If an agent experiences difficulties in terms of language, he is assigned a quality control agent who will work with him to improve his skills. If the agent needs improvement to his communication skills, he can go to empathy training and work on communication style.

    4. Organizational Structure

    In terms of organizational structure, key success factors for a multilingual customer care project are the dedicated and shared teams, and the shared agents. Dedicated teams are part of only one project, while shared teams take calls for multiple projects. Shared agents are those agents that are part of a particular project but can also take calls for other projects when necessary. The purpose of having these organizational units is to achieve maximum utilization of human resources and facilitate the achievement of the KPIs (abandon rate, AHT, productivity, etc.).

    5. Low Call Center Attrition

    High attrition rates are common problem for call centers. At multilingual contact centers, agents are a particularly precious resource due to the languages they speak. To avoid losing agents speaking languages difficult to recruit, TELUS International Europe focuses on staff retention strategies to keep their agents happy.

    Some of the social benefits include a performance-driven bonus structure, social benefits like medical insurance, meal vouchers, sponsoring of education, career development and regular team-building sessions and events.

    Compared to monolingual contact centers, multilingual ones enable their clients to meet various needs of existing and globally expanding markets, and to initiate and establish international operations.

    Fortune 500 and 1000 companies, leaders in various industries with worldwide customer base and global scale operation benefit from outsourcing their customer service to multilingual contact centers for their ability to reduce costs, increase customer satisfaction and expand into new markets.

Did you know?

In addition to our Six Sigma focus, our commitment to best practices includes ITIL V3 compliance and ISO 20000:2011 certification.

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