BPO from A to Z : Part 1

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BPO from A to Z
Having an efficient business comes down to more than acting smart, creating innovative processes and hiring exceptional management.

In this modern and connected world, an efficient business has the best chance to be successful. But having this efficiency in a business, especially a newly launched one, comes down to more than acting smart, creating innovative processes and hiring exceptional management. BPO can be the key to your company’s success, it provides endless possibilities to your business and gives you flexibility and time to focus on your company’s core activities. 

In this three-part article we will go through everything you need to know about business process outsourcing: the basic concept, the types of processes and functions BPO partners can support, the future outlook of the industry, and how to choose the right BPO partner for your company. 

Business Process Outsourcing

Business process outsourcing is the practice of hiring a partner to execute a specific work process or processes in your company. 

The services a BPO partner can provide go from payroll, accounting, telemarketing, data recording, marketing, customer support, and many more. 

BPO usually executes supplementary business functions. These services could be either technical or nontechnical.

Businesses of all sizes outsource processes and the demand keeps growing as new and innovative services are introduced and all the companies are looking for advantages to get ahead of the competition.

BPO can be an alternative to labor migration, allowing the labor force to remain in their home country while contributing with their skills in job positions abroad.

BPO is often divided into two main types of services:

Back office

Back-office services include internal business processes, like billing or purchasing. It includes all the administrative work done in a company like clearances, settlements, record maintenance, accounting and IT services.  All back office activities are non client-facing. 

Front-office 

Front office services have a direct relation with the company’s customers, this include marketing, sales, service departments and tech support.  BPOs can combine these services so that they work together and not independently.

The BPO industry is divided into three categories, based on the location of the vendor: 

 

  • Offshore: offshore BPO partners are located outside of the company’s own country.  For a U.S. based company an offshore BPO partner can be located in Guatemala.
  • Nearshore: nearshore BPO companies are located in countries that neighbor the contracting company’s country. If a company is located in France, BPO companies in Spain or Italy would be considered a nearshore BPO partner.
  • Onshore: onshore BPO partners operate within the same country as the Company hiring the outsourced services, although they may be located in a different city or state. 

 

A company could achieve total process optimization, for example, working with a contact center that is both present in the market and similar in terms of culture, language and time zone.

Why should you outsource your processes?

American businesses choose to outsource for many reasons. Some people have the belief that businesses contract BPO partners just to get tax breaks and lower costs.  

U.S. companies benefit from outsourcing operations to countries with a lower income tax because businesses pay the rate of their host country. 

But there are many other reasons to engage in outsourcing, such as:

Lower costs:

Outsourcing decreases costs from in-house labor, particularly for hiring, training staff, work space and resources to maintain local employees. The outsourcing companies located in a developing country can lower-cost labor markets. 

Process Optimization: 

Outsourcing companies are specialized. They are experts in executing noncore functions of other businesses. Most outsourcing companies invest in specialized processes and technologies to deliver top quality service and technological breakthroughs to their partners.

Highly trained agents and time management strategies are also a plus when partnering with a BPO company, these will have a direct effect on the productivity levels; it will increase quality and customer satisfaction.

Focus on key functions: 

Outsourcing allows businesses management to delegate functions that aren’t directly tied to their core processes and gives time to focus on the core activities that would make the business grow. 

When outsourcing, management would have the energy and time to develop new strategies and business goals instead of having to  check your accountant’s performance during payroll. These actions will boost the competitive advantages of your company and increase customer interactions to improve customer satisfaction and increased profits.

Global presence: 

Outsourcing partners can help your company provide service to your customers in multiple languages and 24/7 attention. These outsourcing companies can provide new opportunities to establish business relations in other parts of the world.  

Flexibility: 

Having most of your noncritical functions and processes covered by a BPO partner gives you the opportunity to act efficiently and fast when dealing with important events like introducing a new product or service. When you outsource you guarantee you will have the ability to manage your in-house staff and your BPO partner’s internal resources to help ensure the best execution of the tasks. 

Efficiency and Time management:

These are two of the most rewarding benefits for companies that outsource their processes. When outsourcing you are letting specialists handle these processes. This decision will save time, improve accuracy and quality and it also will increase the capacity of workflow. Time management strategies are always executed at their best by BPO companies. 

So, the pros are that it saves you time and effort, which saves you money. But there are a lot of benefits to business process outsourcing, in Part 2 and 3 of this article we will go deeper into understanding how BPO can help your business, what functions and processes these partners can execute for your company, the risks of outsourcing, the industry it self, some new trends and the future of BPO.

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