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How Much Does It Cost to Outsource a Call Center?

Are you trying to decide between an in-house call center and outsourcing your call center? Are you looking for a guide to help you calculate the outsourcing costs for your call center needs?

Nowadays, not only are companies looking to oursource a variety of services, such as finding and renting out available office space, they-re also looking to outsource services, especially call center and customer service.


Outsourcing your call center is a trend numerous companies have followed in recent years. Partnering with a third-party provider will potentially save you costs and boost productivity. But, how much does it really cost to outsource a call center?


This article will help you understand and estimate call center pricing across the world, we will explore different types of call centers, costs, and other details to help you make a more educated decision.


Types of Call Centers

The services you need will determine what kind of call center fits you best. This will also help you calculate your outsourcing costs and other details.

Among other things, each call center will require different types of tools as well as different levels of expertise depending on the type of service.

Call centers can be classified into two main categories: Inbound and Outbound. These can be based out of an in-house call center, an outsourced call center, or even a virtual call center where agents work from home or different locations from each other and answer calls through the cloud.

Outsourced call centers are usually more cost-effective than their in-house counterparts. These hubs handle current and potential customers’ telephone calls which may be inbound or outbound.

Inbound Call Centers receive calls initiated by the customer. Companies typically use inbound call centers to offer technical support, handle queries about their products or services, manage customer accounts, receive complaints, and even process orders.

Inbound agents are better trained to provide support and resolve queries to the best of their abilities.

Outbound Call Centers are usually used to make sales call to prospects to sell them products or services. Besides sales, outbound call centers are used to update/verify database information, telemarketing, lead generation, conduct surveys, follow-up on clients, and provide important other information.

Most often, call centers will handle both inbound and outbound calls. What determines the kind of call center is the incoming vs outgoing call volume ratio.


In-house vs Outsourced Call Center Costs


An in-house call center can be an expensive way to handle sales and customer support. 


For instance, the average salary in the US for a Customer Service Representative is $30,688 plus $4,633 in benefits. Multiply that for four or more, depending on how many people you need on your team. In addition, there’s the Customer Service Manager at $39,694 plus $6,032 of benefits a year.


Here’s a breakdown of some of the potential costs of an in-house team of 4 customer service reps:


- Salaries and Benefits              - $141,284

- Customer Service Manager   - $45,726

- Hiring costs                              - $20,645

- Office space                             - $48,000

- Software and Hardware        - $3,600


Total                                           = $259,955 per year


Other costs not included above are training, phone systems, office supplies, fees, commissions. Plus, other team members such as trainers, analysts, and quality assurance coaches. These may add up to an additional $200K per year.


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Average Outsourced Call Center Pricing In 2020

Syrow published the following table with the average outsourced call center pricing by region.

Region Outsourced Call Center Pricing (per hour)
The United States/Canada $20–30
Western Europe $40+
Eastern Europe $12–25
Australia $35–55
Africa/Middle East $15–20
Latin America $8–18
Asia/Philippines $8–14
India $6–10


These prices are a great guide to calculate costs. However, you should consider a call center provider that is not just a provider, but also a partner that brings even more value to the relationship with data insights, training, innovation, and expertise.


What about outsourcing your call center?


Outsourcing costs will depend on many factors such as expected call volume, duration of calls and level of support. Ask yourself, do you need 24/7 availability or only office hours? Multilingual or just English? Just phone or multichannel (email, chat, social media)?


Managed service providers usually offer different packages to meet your needs.



Locally outsourced call center


If you look around the web, you’ll find that call center outsourcing in the US can cost between $25 to $65 per hour for each rep, all else included. If you have 4 reps operating at $30 per hour from 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday, it would be around $1,680 per week or $349,440 per year. 



Off-shore call center


Outsourcing a call center outside the US would bring down the cost per hour per representative. Rates in South America and South Eastern Asia are between $8 and $18.


For instance, one of the reasons CloudTask decided to run operations from Medellin, Colombia, is the availability of local fluent bilingual talent. And because the cost of living is cheaper in Colombia compared to the US, we can offer more competitive salaries than other local employers but still much less than what you would need to pay in California, for example.


A team of 4 CloudTask customer support reps costs $14,000 per month or $168,000 per year, including the support of a Customer Success Manager, Corporate Trainer and Business Analyst. The technology, hiring, training and management are also included. 


Outsourcing your call center will save you headaches. You won’t have to deal with payroll taxes, HR paperwork, sick and vacation days, and other associated factors that affect your company’s productivity and bottom line.


Check out how Outsourcing Customer Service saves you time and allows you to reach your goals in this infographic.


Outsourcing a sales (inbound or outbound) call center is also a great alternative for many companies. We’ve estimated the time and cost savings of outsourcing sales services in this infographic. 


Check out the pricing of CloudTask’s inbound sales teams and customer support teams.



5 Things to Look Out for When Outsourcing Your Call Center