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Help with pricing for a telephone customer service

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Active Member
Gad F Member Since: Aug 11, 2012
1 of 5
I am looking to hire someone to answer the phones and do basic telephone customer service/order taking work. The thing is whomever I hire will not necessarily be busy for 8 hours per day, he or she will just be responsible for answering the calls that come in that day, whether it is 2 calls or 20. So my question is for those who are experience in this field, how do you come up with a payment/compensation structuce for this type of work? Do you pay per hour? per call? or some other method? Any insights or help would be most appreciated. Thanks
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Community Guru
Tony H Member Since: Nov 10, 2011
2 of 5
I had a client on another site whose website had a full CS team from the Philippines, all freelancers. He paid them, on average, $3/hr to start and up to $4 once they gained experience. If you're expecting calls to come in sporadically, it would not be fair to assume your call taker will sit by the phone for 12 hours, just to get paid a few pennies for a single call. So either you're going to need to pay for them to be available during set hours, regardless of the number of calls that come in, or you're going to have to make some arrangement that they pick up the phone if/when they feel like it in between their personal schedule or other freelance contracts. The latter is going to be a CS nightmare. Do you have other things they could do when not busy with calls? Can you afford to pay them a full day wages as a VA?
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Marites T Member Since: Oct 19, 2013
3 of 5
I have worked in a company where you pay for the hours that you hire their freelancers, you can pay them as you go system, so you only pay when they are working for you. This enables you to manage your cost by not paying for idle time. -Virtual/Cloud based staff working remotely from their virtual office - They train, manage and oversee all tasks, projects that are given by you - You only pay when they are working, no cost for idle time - They provide computer, desk space, office equipment and onsite management - You save money and can delegate the responsibility to them
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Mads Soares da Cun V Member Since: Feb 14, 2012
4 of 5
You write that the one you hire will not necessarily be busy the whole day. The thing is. If you expect the one you hire to be ready to take calls like from 9am to 5pm and even though there will only be a couple of call. He/she still cant do other jobs in the meantime because of that the one needs to be there to take the call that could come in. So you need to pay for idle time too. The best thing for you would probably be a fixed monthly fee for the service. But remember you get what you pay for Smiley Happy
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Suzanne N Member Since: Aug 15, 2012
5 of 5
I do Customer Service and am paid for a block of time on one job, but it is when it is busiest, but the rest of the day when it is slow I am paid for the time I check in and answer emails or call backs. I do another job in between, but I am not expected to sit and answer calls, but to check for messages and emails and contact the person back within a short time. This works very well for the client and for me. I do return calls to the customer's within an hour and it is noted on the recording when they call back in. It gives me time to work another job and still be paid for when I am not working. It might be an option, unless you absolutely have to have them answer the phone right then when a call comes in. I think Odesk has 10 minute increments when you login to the tracker, so you would pay for a minimum of 10 minutes. Rate of pay should be depending on what you are expecting. Customer Service can go from very cheap to expensive depending on the contractors experience.
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