Costa Rica's cALL CENTER
About Costa Rica General Information Costa Rica, officially the Republic of Costa Rica is a country in Central America. It is located on the Central American isthmus, lying between latitudes 8° and 12°N, and longitudes 82° and 86°W. It borders the Caribbean Sea (to the east) and the Pacific Ocean (to the west), with a total of 1,290 kilometers (800 mi) of coastline, 212 km (132 mi) on the Caribbean coast and 1,016 km (631 mi) on the Pacific. It is the only Latin American country included in the list of the world's 22 older democracies. The country is ranked third in the world, and first among the Americas, in terms of the 2010 Environmental Performance Index. Christianity is the predominant religion, and Roman Catholicism is the official state religion according to the 1949 Constitution, which at the same time guarantees freedom of religion. Population: As of 2010, Costa Rica has an estimated population of 4,640,000. Whites and mestizos make up 94% of the population, whites being 80% and mestizos 14%, while 3% are Black, or Afro-Caribbean, 1% Native American, 1% Chinese, and 1% other Language: The primary language spoken in Costa Rica is Spanish. Some native languages are still spoken in indigenous reservations. The most numerically important are the Bribri, Maléku, Cabécar and Ngäbere languages, some of which have several thousand speakers in Costa Rica – others a few hundred. About 10.7% of Costa Rica's adult population (18 or older) also speaks English, 0.7% French, and 0.3% speaks Portuguese or German as a second language.
Costa Rica Fast Facts Facts • Costa Rica is in lower Central America, between Nicaragua and Panama (10 degrees north of the equator) • 43% of population are between the ages of 15 and 40 years old • Over a third of the population lives in San Jose (the capital city) • A large, highly skilled labor pool of 2.05 million people with an unemployment rate of 7.3% (estimated to July 2010) • Home to IBM, Microsoft, Procter & Gamble, Hewlett Packard and Intel outsourcing call centers • Education • 95 technical schools and 60 universities • The National Training Institute (INA) offers free technical training • Government commitment to the environment—25% of its land is protected territory • Costa Rica is one of the most biodiversecountries on the planet • 6% of the world's biodiversity • Volcanoes, cloud forests, rainforests, dry forests, beaches • 10,000 species of plants, 800 species of butterflies, 500 species of mammals, and 850 species of birds • 28 national parks, preserves, conservation areas, and refuges
Why Invest in Costa Rica? Key Factors • Close proximity to North America • Politically stable • Established infrastructure • 95% literacy rate—Over 9,300 educational institutions; public education is free and mandatory • Tax laws favorable to international companies looking to invest • Expected implementation of a free trade agreement with the U.S. and related laws that are opening up the economy to more competition • Every day, there are approximately 30 different passenger flights from Costa Rica to the US and Canada • Telecommunications • Redundant fiber optic submarine cables • Satellite and terrestrial microwave network in place to meet the demand of and lines, mobile and Internet services • New multinational suppliers are entering the market, providing private networks, Internet and mobile phone services • 93% of electricity is generated from renewable sources (hydroelectric, Electricity, geothermal and wind)
Top-notch Local Management Team Value Proposition • Richard Blank • CEO of CCC in Costa Rica. • Acts as Site Director and takes on the role of trainer as required. • A U.S. citizen and a permanent resident in Costa Rica. • Successfully trained over 6000 bilingual telemarketers over the years. • Grace Blank • Co-owner and HR Leader of CCC. • Personally screens all the candidates. • A Costa Rica native with over 10 years of contact center experience.
Human Resources and Recruiting Value Proposition • Human Resources • Professional staff with extensive call center experience • Consultation and support with industry experts local to Costa Rica team members • Security, Criminal and Reference checks • Coaching and leadership development support • Payroll, benefits and taxes • Incentive engagement • Average Agent Tenure = 1.3 years • Recruiting • Weekly advertisements in San Jose Newspapers promoting on site Job Fairs • Online and Social Media advertising • Resume collection and screening • 100 resumes – 65 are interviews scheduled • 1st interviews – 10 proceed to 2nd interview and testing • Testing Tools – Written and speaking skills, data entry, computer skills • All agents hired are bilingual English and Spanish • All agents hired have call center or service oriented experience; proficient with computers; and are well acclimated with Western culture
Leadership Development, Training and Quality • Leadership Development • SMART Coaching methodology will be instituted to ensure consistency • Internal Promotions and Cross Skilling talent • Training • Initial New Hire training will be T3 and conducted by experienced Trainer • The Costa Rica Call Center team provides initial assessments and ongoing support • “ESP” – Early System Programming • The Psychology of Selling – phone skills • Phonetics • Scripting Practice and suggestions for modification and improvement • Personal development – self-esteem and confidence • Quality • Transactional requirements, remote and side by side • Coaching, role playing and recording playback • FCR and CSAT focused • ESAT to ensure positive movement and experience for the customer Value Proposition
Call Center Operations Value Proposition • Operational Excellence • People First – Philosophy that both the customer and the agent come “first” • Cross Site coordination with Client, Account Management and Operations • “Metrics that Matter” systematic management and Performance improvement plans developed by Team and Agent via SMART coaching and planning • Focus Groups • Scorecard Driven reporting • Quality driven Analytics • Staffing and Scheduling • CCC Team dedicated • The existing CCC staffing intelligence based on business need will be leveraged and schedules implemented accordingly • Cross site staffing support will continue • The team in Costa Rica are all full time employees • Night shift premium and overtime regulations will apply • All agents are salaried as per Costa Rica Labor law
Retention, Incentives and Attrition • Retention • Open door policy and access to all levels of leadership daily • Location • Benefits • Employee Satisfaction and Events • Incentives • Client decides reward based on program and business need • All Labor laws and customary policies followed and paid • Non-monetary reward based on employee need and identification • Attrition • Monthly = 2 agents • Annualized = 8 agents • Top 3 reasons for leaving = Schedules, personal matters and health problems Value Proposition
Security Highlights • 24 hour local armed security guards at main entrance • All admission must be cleared by security, approved by management and access level established • A dozen surveillance cameras with recorded movements • High tech alarm system; ability to totally monitor and configure over the Internet from anywhere in the world • Fully secure workstation area • No cell phones, iPods, flash keys, cameras, bags
Business Continuity • Costa Rica’s Call Center counts with 2 ISPs to ensure connection reliability • Servers are duplicated to protect the data and any production functions locally. • This information is securely backed up online in case of emergency. • The server room and network equipment is connected to centralized UPS to make sure the operations can continue in case of power failure • The system at the same time is connected to a diesel generator that can support the most important functions of the call center and it can be refilled while functioning.
Value Proposition for Partnering in Costa Rica • Experienced contact center agents • High levels of English/Spanish bilingualism, minimal Spanish accent • Boutique environment, caters to individual client needs • Personal attention, ownership, and accountability • Central location; walking distance to homes; on the public transit route • Solid history of successful banking/financial programs to complement clients’ businesses in all geographies • Proven agent retention strategies—Benefits, paid vacation, and incentives • An HR consultant on retainer to ensure strict adherence to local and international labor standards and to support government audits • 140 seats available • 25 French seats Value Proposition