Difference of Inbound and Outbound Call Centers

Business owners may be familiar with the incoming calls that are present in an inbound contact center. However, there’s a handful of third-party providers that are considered outbound. Some may think that the services are the same, but the two are different.

Many contact centers may make outgoing calls and receive incoming ones. However, there’s always the not-so-clear distinction on inbound vs. outbound call center, and if you need clarity, then you’re on the right page. Know that there are differences between the two, and phone conversations that make up over 50% are considered inbound.

Outbound calling is where the agents or the representatives make sales follow-ups. These outbound contact centers don’t just only deal with sales. They make follow-ups, updates, payment collection, and renewal reminders. The inbound centers are often concentrating on taking up customer concerns, inquiries, and tech support. To further understand, here is some information about their agents, nature of work, effect on the business, attributes, and more.

Differences and their Purposes

The goal of any contact center is to make the customers satisfied and happy with the products or services of a specific company. This can be different in the way that they are achieved.

In an inbound setting, the customers are often calling when they have complaints, clarifications, doubts, queries, and suggestions. They may want to do something on a company’s app or buy some products, but they need assistance from agents. A team that operates the phones or the chat boxes is ready to answer and resolve the issues. Read more about the two setting on this page here.

The customers are the ones who are approaching the business because they have a specific need and the overall interaction is positive. Since the approach is friendlier and polite, the agents control the situation, and they can talk about business or the overall experience of the client.

On the other hand, there are outbound processes where the representatives telephone the customers. The calls are made regarding offers, updates, payments, sales, or renewal of their subscriptions for a particular product or service. This is where the clients are in the middle of their jobs, and they are not often receptive. More often, they may not need the product or service being offered at all, and there’s no telling which time they are convenient, so lesser success rates are to be expected. 

Technology Differences Involved


When talking about the technology of the two, there’s always a requirement for the following:

  • Monitoring of the conversations for quality control
  • Instances in calls where mute, transfer, hold, and barge-ins are made
  • Ticket integration that are sent across the platforms

Outbounds agents would need the following to work efficiently:

  • Integration with the Customer Relationship Management or CRM platform
  • Dialers through landlines or web call
  • Outbound Interactive Voice Response or IVR

Differences in Attitudes and Agent Training

Both types of jobs have their own merits. However, it’s natural to spot some differences when it comes to agent attributes. In many inbound contact centers, there are times when the customers feel in charge of the conversation because they know what they want to happen, and they can say that they have resolved the issue after talking to a representative. 

Many agents have the information ready when a call comes in, and they are accessed in specific software in the company. Many are polite, and there are problem-solving skills involved. Some of the issues can be resolved with the help of CRM software, and both parties are listening to what the other has to say. Know  more about CRM in this link: https://www.techopedia.com/definition/1459/customer-relationship-management-crm

However, in an outbound conversation, most often than not, it’s the representative encroaching on their potential client’s time. They are adopting a more assertive or even more aggressive attitude because they want to be heard. These people are used to selling spiels, recognizing the moods of their prospects, closing, and persuasion to make a sale for the day.

Differences and Challenges in a Business Owner’s Part

Both the effects of inbound and outbound representatives on the business are crucial for its growth. However, the agents are meeting different sets of challenges, and it’s important to know what’s working and what’s not. Many of the outbound agents are content with this type of work because they have higher compensations.

If a sale is made, they can get a percentage out of it. In the outbound conversations, most customers are willing to listen if the brand they are going to buy is trusted and has a good reputation. Many times, the high conversion ratios are the metrics used in many agencies.

On the other hand, inbound customer representatives are measured with the level of customer satisfaction that they are receiving. The speed of their resolutions and the number of calls that they receive in a day is also considered a metric. The importance of both of them is something that should not be undermined, and there are fine-tuning that should be made to make them a success.