Business Process Outsourcing or BPO has its foundation in the manufacturing industry, wherein manufacturers hire other companies to take care of certain processes, like the aspects of their supply chains that are not related to the core competencies needed to create their end products.
Over time, most of the organizations across the world in other industries are adopting this practice. At present, the use of these services has increased to such an extent that all kinds of organizations, be it nonprofits, profit businesses, or government offices and agencies, enter a contract with BPO service providers in a bid to perform a number of processes.
How Does a BPO Work?
Organizational executives decide on outsourcing a particular business process via various avenues. For instance, startup companies usually outsource back-office and front-office functions since there is a lack of resources required to build the staff as well as support functions in-house.
On the other side, an established business can go for the option of outsourcing a task that has been performed all along, following an analysis that the outsourced provider will be able to a much better job and at a reduced cost.
Management experts advise enterprises to assess the functions that should be outsourced, following which that function should be evaluated against the pros and cons of outsourcing to analyze if moving that particular task to the outsourced provider is strategically good for the organization.
Trends Expected to Shape the BPO Sector in 2020
1. AI-Powered Voice Response
Over the years, the omnichannel experience has become mainstream, prompting enterprises to acquire AI-Powered Voice Response. The omnichannel experience involves providing a similar experience on all the platforms, businesses need to harvest better voice responses.
With artificial intelligence (AI), BPOs are given the ability to transcript all the calls, in addition to maintaining the records of conversations. AI is making it easier for BPOs to evaluate the data as well as curate the omnichannel experience.
When AI is leveraged sufficiently, it can act as a bridge between the data gathered from multiple channels such as calls, social media, chats, and emails. After analyzing all together, data from various sources helps reveal all the patterns followed by a particular customer, which helps enhance the overall customer service.
2. Tailored Outsourcing
Given the entry of new companies, experts have noted an increased competition within the BPO sector. A large number of agencies are evolving in order to cater to the mounting needs of an organization.
While a few enterprises are training their employees regarding the latest technologies, certain out of box thinkers are striving to customize their services in accordance with the rising needs of the enterprises.
Sectors such as Fintech and E-commerce are expanding rampantly all over the world. With the burgeoning user base, these sectors can eventually need to outsource services.
3. Social Media to Act as a Customer Service Channel
Today’s customer interacts with different brands via social media platforms as well as messaging apps. Twitter, WhatsApp, and Facebook are some of the most popular platforms that help reach enterprises.
Brands are dependent on various social media channels to acquire a higher number of customers. In the near future, every brand of varying sizes and capacity is expected to leverage social media platforms as a customer service channel.
Uber, Netflix, and Amazon already make use of social media effectively for customer service. These brands have managed to raise the bar of customer service considerably, and now their contemporaries are jumping onto the bandwagon to offer a kind of similar experience.
BPO Offer Certain Services, Which Can be Grouped as Follows:
I. IT & Software Operations
II. Finance & Accounting Services
These kinds of services include accounts payable, billing services, general accounting, receivables, regulatory and auditing compliance.
III. Knowledge Services
These are higher-level processes, some of which are data mining, data analytics, internet and web research, data and knowledge management, and also development of an information governance program as well as offering voice of customer feedback.
IV. Human Resource Services
BPOs offer services that help address all types of workforce challenges. These cover healthcare administration, payroll services, workforce training, hiring and recruitment, retirement benefits and insurance processing.
V. Customer Interaction Services
BPO companies generally cover a business’s appointment schedules, order processing, voicemail services, marketing program, warranty administration, email services, surveys, telemarketing, payment processing, customer support, quality assurance, and other customer feedback.
VI. Back-Office Transactions
These types of services include credit, check and debit card processing; receivables; collection; transportation administration; direct and indirect procurement; warehouse management and logistics and dispatch.
In the very near future, customer experience is anticipated to be a significant differentiator, with people choosing businesses that provide quality experience instead of going for enterprises that give a competitive price.
BPOs play a substantial role in shaping the whole customer experience. By leveraging journey mapping, benchmarking as well as analytics, agencies are able to analyze their customers better, afterwhich they are able to optimize their services and offer customers a much better experience.
In short, the future seems extremely bright for business process outsourcing services.