Do you Speak my Language? The Importance of a Multilingual Contact Center
There are over 7,100 languages spoken in the world today. Thanks to technology, our world is getting smaller and more connected. If you’re running a business, there’s a good chance you’re encountering shoppers from different cultural and linguistic backgrounds.
That’s why brands need to invest in multilingual contact centers. Although multilingual associates may have been a luxury 10 years ago, it’s a necessity for businesses of any size and in any industry.
What Callers Expect
Customers expect your customer service team to speak their language. After all, wouldn’t we feel disenfranchised and out of place if we tried to reach someone and had no way of communicating?
After English, Spanish is the second most common language spoken in the US. It’s important to realize that Spanish-speaking individuals are also the fastest-growing minority group in the US. In fact, 43,000,000 people in the U.S. are native Spanish speakers. Another 15 million have some knowledge of Spanish.
But this isn’t an issue just with Spanish: this is a global challenge. For example, French is the fourth most common language in the US, with over 2 million French and Creole speakers. And what about Chinese, the third most common language in America with nearly 3,000,000 speakers?
While your existing customer base might not require you to speak every language in the world, it would be foolish to ignore the diversity of languages in the US. Instead of staffing English-only agents, does your brand needs to have a multilingual call center?
Should You Have A Multilingual Call Center?
Does your business need a multilingual call center? Not everyone will, but we’ve found bilingual staffing is a good solution if:
- One of the two languages you serve is English.
- Your staff speaks English well enough to communicate with English-speaking customers.
English and Spanish is the most common combination for US-based businesses. GCS can also add other languages based on your customers’ demographics, so if your customers are in an area that speaks Chinese, we’ll staff your contact center with Chinese-speaking agents.
We work very closely with our customers to decide when to expand languages for them. In our centers, you will find English-speaking agents also speaking Russian, French, Chinese, Polish, and even Amharic.
We also help businesses optimize their multilingual call center through:
- Translations: Translation services are also available and reasonably priced for rare, non-supported languages.
- Sharing agents: This is another way to lower costs while expanding the languages you can service. Outsourcers like GCS with multiple sites often have staff that can be used in a shared environment, with the agreement of all clients needing coverage of that language.
The bottom line
At GCS, we have the personnel, knowledge, and experience to hire and manage the contact center staff that’s fluent in the languages your customers need. Rely on GCS to streamline your transition to a multilingual contact center. If you suspect it’s time to expand the number of languages in your contact center, get in touch with our team.
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