Business process outsourcing may be one of the most misunderstood industries. In parts of the world, people rail against outsourcing and worry about losing jobs within their own countries. Some people view outsourcing solely through the lens of contact centres. In truth, outsourcing is really the by-product of a changing world and economy.
Ralf Ellspermann, CEO of PITON-Global, a leading mid-sized BPO in the Philippines, says, “No matter which type of selling you are looking at, business-to-business, business-to-consumer, peer-to-peer, it’s all done globally now thanks to the digital age. The same is true for customer and back office support tasks. The internet did not just change the way we communicate or the way we exchange information, it redefined how we do business and on what scale.
“Business process outsourcing is certainly far more involved than just a network of contact centres and related tasks. While call centres account for nearly 70% of the BPO work in the Philippines, there are still a whole host of other outsourcing services that belong to the industry,” he adds.
The Philippines has emerged as the world’s BPO powerhouse. While the industry is still relatively new, the country saw an opportunity to get in at the ground level and become market leaders that companies all around the globe now turn to.
Understanding that Filipinos are industry leaders and that the scope of work encompassed by BPO is varied and far-reaching is a vital place to start.
On the American TV show Shark Tank, you can often hear one of the sharks, Kevin O’Leary, telling the hopeful entrepreneurs that they have a product, not a business. O’Leary says this when the entrepreneur comes in with a single product and no future plans for others or add-ons. This is to say, you cannot be one dimensional. For an industry like BPO, you cannot just play one singular note over and over again.
Staying with this metaphor, the Philippines is an orchestra.
Call centres have their place, but let’s first focus on other areas that the country has perfected in this world of outsourcing. Filipinos are experts in customer support, finance and accounting, human resources, information technology, and animation. These services allow them to aid your company in multiple different business operations.
Now allow me to be clear, the Philippines BPO industry doesn’t work with only the little guys. (They do that as well, but not exclusively.) They are also working with the movers and the shakers. Companies that outsource to the Philippines include Microsoft, Google, and Facebook.
“The Philippines also participates in a smaller subset of the BPO world known as knowledge process outsourcing. Operations that fall under this category are business analytics, medical coding and billing, litigation support, and other highly specialised, information-technology-enabled services,” says Ellspermann.
Now let us move back to call centres. You may think you understand all the functions of a contact centre in the context of outsourcing. But are you truly aware of all that call centres can do? These contact centres can handle customer service, technical support, customer acquisition and retention, and collections. Services are provided through multiple channels which include phone, email, web chat, social media, and IVR. That is quite the CV, isn’t it?
Not only are their services varied, but they maintain their position at the peak of the industry by carrying these out in over thirty languages. Want to see another impressive client list for these processes? Sure you do. Companies outsourcing front and back office processes to the Philippines include Uber, Netflix, Airbnb, and PayPal.
BPO is synonymous with big business. The number of processes and services that can be executed in this industry are varied and important to your business. The Philippines does all of these, and they do them at a level of quality that is unrivalled on the global stage.
The BPO industry is robust and stocked with competitive companies pushing each other to excel. This competition has helped companies like PITON-Global emerge as one of the best mid-sized BPOs in the Philippines.
All these factors add up to the Philippines being the answer for your front and back office needs. If your company is looking into BPO, there is only one place to start.