Harnessing the power of BPO

Client: Arvato Services, November 2008

Summary: What is BPO and how can it help your business gain a competitive edge?

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The business world is cut-throat, fast paced and competitive. Constantly evolving, your company must respond quickly to market changes to survive. In what has become a global arena, there is no room for mistakes to be made. Reputations can be wiped out in seconds, and consumers are increasingly fickle.

In order to keep afloat, many businesses are beginning to recognise the importance of Business Process Outsourcing or BPO. Allowing companies to focus on their core activities, it is a strategic management tool designed to help support the other business functions: this has become more pertinent in light of changing organisational structures.

Traditionally, it was the norm for businesses to strive for organisational growth, with many believing the bigger the business was physically, the more successful it was. However, over the last few decades, it has been recognized that focusing on core operations, while subcontracting non-core ones out to a third party, can be much more time- and cost-efficient.

In fact, it is argued that not only can BPO help you to gain a competitive edge by offering a superior service, but it also allows businesses to adopt a flexible structure. The result is the ability to adapt quickly to any changes in market forces or legislation, for example.

BPO services are often separated into two categories: back office, and front office, outsourcing. The former focuses on internal functions, like billing or purchasing, while the latter deals with such issues as customer relationship management and human resources.

There are many advantages to BPO, when implemented successfully. For instance, by allowing one to fully concentrate on a specific product or service, the operations you don’t specialise in can be outsourced. Consequently, if you want to launch a new product, but don’t have the technical expertise to market it, why not let a company who is do it for you?

Equally, staff and consumer satisfaction is of key import. But, if you don’t have the capabilities to deal with them effectively, it can be damaging to the overall business. By outsourcing, you are allowing someone who has the best tools available to focus their energy on successfully dealing with these issues, while you concentrate on the heart of your business.

When thinking about employing the use of BPO services, however, it pays to consider a few pertinent points. First, it is essential to determine exactly what services you want to outsource, as well as to clearly identify your vision.

It is also imperative to look for a reputable contractor that understands your needs and can deliver a bespoke solution for your company. Finally, constantly review your current contracts, in order to ensure you are receiving the best deal and most appropriate strategy possible.

Keywords: BPO; Business Process Outsourcing; BPO services; front office outsourcing; back office outsourcing

Image Credit: Ivan2010

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