Text moderation is the act or process in which a company continually monitors content submissions on its website. The intention is to curb bad and malicious posts. This moderation is critical given that the website is the face of many businesses today.
It pays given that you will spend vast resources, endless efforts, and a lot of time in building a stable online community for your business. This community may be the make or break for your business survival given its importance in online selling and publicity.
While you expect to get genuine and sane content posted on your website most of the time, some people come there with moods. Hence it will be uncommon to prepare for postings that violate your web policies. So you would find posts that carry hate speech, abusive language, and even spam. This applies to all websites regardless of your business niche.
Thus text moderation is sort of a must for any website with a face.
Outsourcing text moderation can help you maintain some in-house orders for your business. The moderation checks that the website rules and policies are followed to the letter. It also involves removing offending content, as well as blocking or limiting the posting rights of the persons involved. Here are the 7 steps to outsource text moderation.
- Lay down some rules and policies
Laying down posting rules and policies is the start of moderation for many website owners. That’s because it can be difficult to moderate without a clear understanding of what is to be allowed and rejected or removed.
In addition to laying down the basic posting rules and policies, it pays to update the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs). The SOPs reflect the addition of text moderation. It also ensures that you define the process clearly regarding what is to be done during moderation.
- Create a clear outsourcing action plan
It can be difficult to agree with the service provider on what is to be done if you haven’t considered it thoughtfully. A blueprint will spell the terms of requirement and expectations in clarity, but also helps you to put the thought into what you want and what is to be done by the provider.
The blueprint lets you refine and detail the outsourcing tasks. The details will also help the provider to know what is expected of them. They will help to set the right expectations for the vendor.
As a checklist, you will need to ensure that the blueprint lists or explains the outsourcing objectives, details of the process, and the web properties to be moderated. It should contain the consumer profile, rules of posting and outsourcing, knowledge requirement of the domain, quality standards, timelines, and volume.
- Lay down outsourcing criteria
The criterion helps you to decide on the provider. It should point to the experience of the provider. Consider people who have provided similar work to other clients.
Besides, the provider should ensure quality and accuracy. Make sure you define the required accuracy levels and check them against the provider’s deliverables in previous projects they have done.
Part of the criteria is a quick delivery or turnaround. While some websites would implement pre-moderation such that the service provider can see the posts and decide to or not to publish, clients, on the other hand, want to see their contributions published almost immediately.
To expedite posting in this regard, there are tools the service provider might use to automatically limit spamming. For instance, some of these tools work by blocking content with vague or inappropriate language. Then the posts can be published automatically. However, text moderation needs to be available on a 24/7 basis. Workers should be able to do it from anywhere.
The other aspect is the contract pricing. In this regard, the B2B arrangement will target customized services. Therefore the price might be higher than would normally.
Other criteria for selecting an outsourced content moderation service provider include the ability to provide the service in multiple languages. This will save a lot of money and time looking for separate service providers for each of the main languages in which you need to provide the service.
Then ensure that the provider uses the current technology. While human intervention in moderation does produce the best results, it may be hampered by errors and delays due to extensive manual tasks that need to be done to moderate a busy website or online business.
Today, a business can rely on AI-driven solutions to automate some actions. Look for providers that have either invested in or are in partnership with other services invested in these technologies.
Data security rules and policies are also paramount for any content moderation outsourcing. Make sure the provider adheres to set security practices and protocols to secure client data. Data breaches can be very costly for a company. The company should invest in training its workers on these matters, including training them on your data security rules and policies.
Finally, ensure that the provider has a scalable operation in terms of workers and the technologies being used to moderate your content.
- Call for participation from interested providers
Most large companies do this by issuing a request for a proposal or RFP. The company issues a standardized proposal form spelling out what information they seek. You can also outreach to providers in your trade circles manually or even through ads. You can also use direct contact through databases like Yellow Pages and web search.
- Review and shortlist
Shift through the applications and identify potential providers. The process involves matching the provider’s service and capabilities with your expectations.
- Hold discussions with a select few
Once shortlisting is done, follow up with each of the shortlisted partners and discuss with them through a Non-Disclosure Agreement or NDA. At this stage, the potential provider will make his or her case for being selected, detail the service they provide and express detailed interest. They will then do site visits together with the website owner, interact with your staff, and negotiate prices and service levels.
- Shortlist the final provider
The most suitable provider will get the Letter of Intent and sign the contract.
- Implementation and transition
Both of you will now kick off the Letter of Intent agreed during the negotiations. What follows is the transition and stabilization of the process, a trial run, implementation of the project, and reviewing of deliverables and outputs from time to time to refine the text moderation process with the vendor.