In-house vs. outsourced SaaS support for expenses management
Using software as a service (SaaS) applications within your business operations, including your handling your expenses?
The ‘service’ part in a SaaS solution for expenses management may be more crucial to running a smooth and efficient business than you realise.
SaaS support teams are essential for helping users take full advantage of their software. They have the necessary skills and knowledge to solve problems with logging in and using the system. A good support team will help you make the most of your software.
There are two versions of support that may come with your SaaS product: in-house and outsourced. An in-house support team works and operates within the product company. Outsourced support generally is provided by offshore call centers, which are contracted out and not part of the company.
Does it matter where your SaaS support is coming from?
When choosing a SaaS solution for expense management, is it better to opt for a provider with an in-house support team, or outsourced support? Let’s weigh up some of the pros and cons of each.
Quality of service
Typically, SaaS companies focus on one product or a small set of products. Whereas, Off-shore support houses are trained by the original SaaS company to provide support for a wide range of services and products, including any software updates.
By the nature of this third-party set-up, an outsourced team is less connected to both the software and, you, the customer. And because an outsourced support team does not work onsite with the company, customer service can become disorganized and unclear. This lack of direct control over the customer experience makes it extremely difficult for the company to monitor if expense policies are still being upheld.
When a third-party customer service entity is involved, the quality of service is compromised. The offshore support team may lack important company knowledge, including values, policies, and culture. This opens a window for errors and support slip-ups.
On the other hand, in-house teams are more knowledgeable in both the software and your company's expense policies and procedures. This leads to a better overall experience for clients and users.
Plus, the in-house development team that creates the software is close. This is the case with Webexpenses. There is a great deal of internal communication that occurs when a new product or feature is released. This ensures all in-house team members understand the products in detail and are equipped to handle customer queries.
An outsourced team would be less involved in feature updates and releases, leading to a disconnect between software and support.
In-house support provides an additional benefit: software updates. For companies like Webexpenses, who employ both support and development in-house, this can mean a much better user experience in the long run.
An outsourced support team is there to close ticks. They're less invested in feedback from users. Meanwhile, a good in-house team will collect and use this information. Feedback from support will be passed on to a Product Manager, and sometimes the development team for software updates that improve user experience.
For example, if support is getting calls about users having trouble finding a ‘Submit’ button, the support team will discuss it. The support team leader may then pass this information on to the Product Manager, who can bring the issue to the development team.
They'll then be able to fix the issue, which was identified because of collated feedback from the support team. Reoccurring, this kind of refinement leads to the best user experience and a consistently improved platform for users.
An important priority for any company should be the security and integrity of sensitive customer and company information.
Data is the primary asset of most major companies. So when an outsourced support company comes into play, there is an increase in data breach risks.
In fact, 63% of data breaches stem from outsourced support providers, according to a study conducted by Trustwave. It’s important for a business to keep data security strong to demonstrate due diligence in protecting their customers as well as their employees.
In-house support teams offer the most secure forms of data protection. Everything is housed within their gated servers, making the data inaccessible to third parties.
Because the data lies within the company, there are strict protocols in place for employees to be able to control internally across their support team. Not only does this prevent fraud, but it offers a level of protection that offshore support teams cannot provide - or that you may be unable to provide.
In addition, overseas support teams may not be required to go through the same background checks and training as a SaaS provider with an in-house team. This can present an additional threat to data security.
There are major consequences when company data has been breached. These include a loss of trust, damaged reputation, financial losses, and impact on future endeavors. Ultimately, it's best to leave critical data information to a trusted source and accessible to as few people as possible.
When the support team lives within the company, they represent their company brand. This personalization ensures that:
- Better quality service is sustained
- The familiarity of clients is retained
- User experience is improved
- Data security remains optimal
In addition, there is greater monitoring from management over the support team to ensure quality performance. So what does that mean for your users?
Top-notch service. With in-house support, you are a big fish in a little pond (versus one of many to a third-party support provider), so to speak. User reviews reflect directly on the SaaS company’s team and its product.
A company with an off-shore support team can experience a disconnect between the company brand and the support team. Because the support team is a part of a different entity, they may lack vital knowledge and information about the company needed to properly assist with problems and troubleshooting.
So, why is in-house SaaS support better?
Ultimately, this quality assurance means easier onboarding and an overall positive experience. This bolsters the potential for a long-lasting relationship and means there’s no need to switch software and retrain your team. Just quality SaaS experience, excellent service, and happy users.
Learn more about Webexpenses’ expense management solution.