Sourcefit Blog Feed Customized, transparent offshore staffing solutions from Sourcefit make outsourcing in the Philippines easier than ever. en-us Sourcefit Logo <![CDATA[ Guide to Banking BPO, Financial Services Outsourcing ]]> Sourcefit Philippines, BPO Blogs: Guide to Banking BPO, Financial Services OutsourcingBanking and financial services outsourcing is the use of third party providers to deliver services or perform tasks normally undertaken internally by financial institutions. The third party financial services provider may be located locally or offshore. Banking BPO (business process outsourcing) is a strategic tool that supports business growth and account servicing functions. At the start of the last decade, professional services firm Deloitte estimated that in the United States alone, $356 billion of the financial services industry will be offshored to third party providers within five years after 2004. More recent studies done by consultancy firms KPMG ad HfS show that global spending on finance and accounting business process outsourcing (BPO) services will grow at a rate of 8 percent until 2017. In an increasingly competitive market, many banks and financial institutions are positioning themselves for growth by turning to offshore providers to take advantage of low cost, high-quality services. Deloitte reported that organizations increasingly leverage banking BPO as a cost reduction tool and a sourcing strategy. Many investment banks have offshored or outsourced over 50 percent of their finance services and are planning to offshore highly complex responsibilities, according to KPMG. Trends indicate banks and lending institutions are moving from outsourcing transactional functions to specialized core roles like financial and internal management reporting, budgets, capital management/reporting and regulatory returns.
Banking BPO Services
The impact of banking BPO and finance services offshoring extends to several business areas and can be seen throughout the lending lifecycle. Areas include information technology (IT), finance and accounting (FAO), discrete back office functions, and contract services. Industry research shows that finance organizations outsource both regulated and unregulated functions within outsourcing contracts that vary in scope and complexity. Banks and lending institutions typically offshore transactional functions such as new customer acquisition, account servicing, consumer and commercial lending, and back office process management. Less commonly outsourced are higher-value functions like budgets, forecasts, regulatory returns, and capital management.
Customer Acquisition Services
Customer acquisition services include a set of functions and systems that generate and manage prospective customers, leads, and inquiries in the banking and finance sector. Customer acquisition management is considered a link between advertising and customer relationship management. Customer acquisition management services provide an organized environment for managing large volumes of leads and inquiries at various stages of the customer lending lifecycle and across local or offshore sales departments. Third parties also provide closed-loop reporting that measures the effectiveness of promotional activities and allows clients to realize improvements. Offshore providers utilize various marketing techniques to acquire new customers like customer loyalty programs and customer referrals. Customer acquisition management also covers services like telemarketing, credit evaluation, verification and approval, document and application processing, underwriting, and customer support. Credit Evaluation and Verification Offshore third party providers allow banks and financial institutions to minimize credit risks and frauds through verification services like risk profiling, telephone re-verification, payback capacity evaluation, and implementation of a credit decision-making model. Document and Application Processing Application processing in the banking industry is a time-intensive task that requires a critical and experienced eye. It starts with digitization of physical forms and supporting documents and transmitting the scans to a centralized location. Data is captured, completed, indexed and checked for errors before the validated file is sent back to the original location. Post-processing is then done at the core location. Third parties provide document and application processing services as well as proprietary application processing software that simplify and improve existing processes. Software can be configured to specific workflows, quality needs and any type of application form. Telemarketing and Promotions Customer acquisition management also covers telemarketing and promotions to generate leads and respond to a prospect inquiry. Besides telephone, marketing efforts to heighten the prospect’s interest can be done through brochures, letters, e-mails, SMS, and chat.
Account Servicing Processes
Offshore providers offer account servicing processes and software to manage consumer and commercial accounts like debit cards, credit cards, and consumer/commercial loans. Offshore consumer banking services allow organizations to adapt to changing regulations and technology, launch new products quickly, and exceed customer expectations while keeping costs low. By offshoring account servicing processes, banks and financial institutions also achieve full regulatory and policy compliance, reduction in payment turnaround time, reduction in average cost per transaction, and a four-fold increase in productivity. Account servicing processes that can be offshored include consumer account management, merchant or commercial account management and capital market services. Consumer Accounts Effective management of consumer accounts help foster customer loyalty. Third parties can handle transactional functions like customer service (online, telephone, mail), retail banking, originations, end-to-end consumer lending and mortgage services, account renewals, loans disbursement, and cards services, as well as core operations like wealth management. Third parties also offer fraud and anti-money laundering (AML) and risk analytics. Commercial Accounts Offshore commercial account servicing can reduce total cost of ownership, reduce operational risk, and provide a unified solution for several banking products. Third parties provide a wide range of services that include payment processing (fund transfers, liquidity management, fraud analysis, pension and dividend payments, billing, reporting), commercial loan processing (including credit evaluation, underwriting, and collateral evaluation), and trade finance services (analytics, fraud management, origination, customer service, reconciliation). Capital Markets Offshore account servicing for the capital markets industry improves business performance and standardizes processes at the lowest cost. Capital markets account servicing processes cover front, middle and back-office. Services include research and analytics across industries, valuations, model development, data analysis support, valuations, trade processing, clearing and settlement, data management and reconciliations.
Consumer and Commercial Lending Services
Third parties provide lending solutions for all phases of consumer and commercial lending, from loan origination to asset management. For consumer loans, outsourced services include sales, processing, underwriting and closure, research and analysis, foreclosure and pre-foreclosure, loss mitigation, debt protection services, bankruptcy, loan modification, data management, and risk management. Offshore commercial lending services include automated processes, analytics and reporting, flexible capacity models, and end-to-end process management. Third parties also provide mortgage services that help banks preserve capital, increase business forecasting, and generate revenue from growth markets. Research by Everest Group pegged the global lending BPO market at about US$ 21 to 23 billion in 2011, split evenly between third party providers and shared services. The share of BPO-centric service providers are growing nearly three times faster than the utility-based providers, which dominate the market. Part of the reason is that new and stricter lending regulations are segmenting the demand for loan products. Financial institutions are under pressure to reduce costs and grow revenues in a highly volatile environment, and many are turning to offshore providers to achieve their business goals. Offshore banking BPO services help companies align their operations with dynamic market requirements using automation and flexible capacity models. Businesses can gain more than 50 percent savings through standardized processes, automation, and lowest industry rates for compliance management. Organizations can do more with data acquired from digital and physical products by combining information with offshore analytics, research, and reporting. Offshoring is also a way to boost IT initiatives (such as online self-service loan origination and collections) that support revenue generation. With standardized processes across multiple locations, quality improvements and operational flexibility from third parties, companies can speed up loan origination, increase time-to-market for products, and provide topnotch customer service.
Back Office Transaction Process Management
Third parties provide management of back office financial transactions for consumers and merchants and for banking products that range from credit cards to mortgages. Common services that can be offshored include fraud detection, anti-money laundering (ALM) services, regulatory compliance monitoring, custody services, portfolio analytics and reporting, asset/investment management, and IT management. Custody Services Custody services refer to safekeeping services that a financial institution provides individuals and merchants. On behalf of the customer and for a fee, the custodian collects dividends, interest and proceeds from the sales of securities and transfers the funds to the client’s account. This process reduces the risk of the client’s assets being stolen. Unlike banks, custodians cannot use securities for their own ends. Third party providers can handle these functions for the organization providing custody services, allowing the company to reduce costs significantly, improve process efficiency, and streamline workflows through automation, standardization, and other best practices. Fraud Risk Management and Anti Money Laundering (ALM) Banks handle local and foreign accounts that are highly profitable but also high-risk. Fraud risk and AML officers perform customer due diligence (CDD) and ensure that accounts comply with regulations and pass government scrutiny. Back office processes like fraud risk review, AML monitoring, account verification, chargeback, recoveries, regulatory reporting, and risk analysis can be offshored to an experienced third party. Third parties can help improve a financial institution’s risk management efforts through standardization, automation, and process improvements while cutting costs. With their domain expertise, offshore providers can also better track fraud losses and fraud trends across regions and help organizations optimize fund recovery efforts. Portfolio Analytics Portfolio analytics is the evaluation of the performance of a consumer or merchant’s investments and how it affects returns. Third parties offer consulting services and portfolio analytics software to manage portfolios. Typical analytics software may include charting and attribution tools, detailed reporting, weights and variables, and data that drive returns.
Current Trends in Banking BPO Services/Financial Services Offshoring
The Banking, Financial Services and Insurance (BFSI) business process outsourcing (BPO) industry is composed of three verticals: banking and financial services, capital markets and investment banking, and insurance, of which banking and financial services BPO is the largest and most mature. In general, BFSI has always been the sector that is most open to business process outsourcing/offshoring (BPO). BFSI is unlike no other industry in that the regulatory landscape is the most stringent, and the volume of transactions handled is the highest. The expectation of completing transactions in real time is also very high, and the consumers are the most demanding. In turn, finance organizations also place the greatest demands on local and offshore BPO providers. Banks and lending institutions have led other industries in technology spending and adoption of new trends, especially outsourcing, mainly because of these drivers: extremely stringent regulations, economic challenges and uncertainties across geographies, changing customer engagement channels, and the importance of technology and digital transformation in improving the bottom line. According to Everest Group’s BFSI BPO Market Report in 2013, the pressure to cut costs and to be more agile, to acquire new customers and exceed customer expectations, and to grow beyond traditional markets drive financial institutions to work with experienced partners. Banking BPO is increasingly seen as a strategic tool to achieve business goals and stay competitive in the marketplace.
Banking BPO Market Forecasts
In 2013, research firm HfS studied the banking and finance services (BFS) outsourcing market and evaluated the top 75 providers of banking and IT services. Its 2013 Market Report in the banking and finance services BPO industry showed that the BFS BPO industry will continue to trend at a 5 percent compound annual growth rate (CAGR) until 2016. Based on a 5.2 percent CAGR, the BFS BPO market is projected to be worth about $200 billion by 2016. With that market size, BFS remains the most attractive vertical for BPO service providers. While banks and finance organizations focus on cost reduction and business growth, service providers try to create new offerings, improve service delivery models, and increase market share. NelsonHall’s Global BPO Market Forecast for 2014-2018 reports that overall, North America will be the biggest market for banking BPO in the next five years in spite of having the lowest growth rate among major markets. NelsonHall predicts that retail banking BPO will grow more slowly than capital markets BPO, with growth driven by core banking, loan administration, and merchant acceptance processing. The fastest growing vertical will be capital markets BPO in trade processing services (with reference data BPO services as the fastest growing in capital markets), followed by portfolio services and retail banking BPO. Meanwhile, check processing BPO will continue to shrink.
Banking BPO Trends
The same NelsonHall study confirmed that economic uncertainty and increasingly tighter industry regulations have greatly impacted the banking BPO market. In the past year, activity has increased in the banking BPO industry as new policies were rolled out and clarified. The growth is expected to continue over the next five years, even faster than the growth of the entire BPO industry. 1. The offshoring advantage. Banks and financial institutions, like any other company that aims to maximize resources and reduce costs, are working with third parties in offshore locations to benefit from labor arbitrage. Emerging markets like India and the Philippines still offer the lowest industry prices for banking BPO services that compares in quality with services from local or near-shore providers. 2. Onshore resourcing. Everest Group practice director Anupam Jain reported in late 2014 that regulatory concerns are driving banks and lending institutions toward onshore resourcing. Although companies retain control over offshore captive centers, risks related to compliance pressure make the finance sector wary of full-blown outsourcing. Instead, companies prefer to offshore “transactional” or non-core back-office functions while holding on to highly-regulated services. 3. New offshoring projects. As service providers increase their local, near-shore and offshore capabilities to stay relevant, costs will remain competitive and give banks more comprehensive options to choose from. This will lead to expansion of current projects and new initiatives like mobile solutions to improve customer engagement and improve the bottom line. 4. Growth of banking analytics. According to Everest Group’s BFSI BPO Market Report 2013, service providers are creating new analytics solutions to help organizations process Big Data and leverage information to gain customer insights. Companies can also expect better risk management solutions. For example, capital markets companies are partnering with offshore third parties to meet regulatory requirements and manage risk more effectively.
This case study provides helpful insights on accounting and payroll services outsourcing in the Philippines. Or talk to an expert today. Contact Sourcefit and a member of our upper management team will help you determine the opportunities in building your dedicated team of professionals in the Philippines. Share This: ]]>
<![CDATA[ Telesales and Customer Service Outsourcing Trends in 2015 ]]> Sourcefit Philippines, Outsourcing Blogs: Telesales and Customer Service Outsourcing Trends in 2015The beginning of the year is a great time to tune in to trends and understand where customer service and telesales are headed. What should your company focus on to make the customer experience even better? Whether you run a startup or a corporation, here are some telesales, customer service and outsourcing trends to watch:
Customer Service, Telesales Outsourcing and the Mobile Consumer
2014 already saw consumers flocking to mobile phones and tablets to interact with stores and companies. Insiders expect this trend to continue to 2015 and beyond. As mobile devices increasingly simulate the power of desktop computing, consumers are using applications for richer and more seamless experiences. The retail industry stands to gain the most as mobile payment options and mobile e-commerce apps and websites proliferate. In 2014, the number of people who visited websites from mobile devices exceeded those who visited from desktops. For business owners, this means providing a satisfying digital experience for clients is of top importance. While customers will continue to use traditional lines of contact like phone and email, managers should build a stellar service delivery model focusing on mobile customers. The best setup is not merely an add-on to your existing website or a mobile-optimized interface; mobile software is geared to become a brand on its own and a standalone product. How do you make mobile consumers happy? The same principles of great customer service apply: quick solutions and the right answers to their questions. The right software should let your customers find what they are looking for easily and quickly; otherwise, they will look for more readily accessible alternatives. Besides mobile assistance, make sure your customers can also reach you through live chat, phone, social media, e-mail and SMS. As you interact with customers across multiple channels, let your customer service team use the same knowledge base for consistency. Other customer service trends for 2015: 1. 24/7 Help 24/7 assistance is not exactly new, and customers will continue to demand round the clock service in 2015. Whether you run a small business or an international conglomerate, you should aim to be there for your clients during after-hours. 2. Merging of e-commerce and traditional retail. A growing number of customers are shopping online, and businesses must ensure a seamless, integrated experience whatever the channel of interaction. Your customers should be able to find and buy what they need easily and quickly. 3. Changing customer loyalty. It’s easier than ever before for customers to pick and choose among the multitude of shops available. If they can’t find what they want quickly or if they feel that you don’t listen or treat them with respect, they will gladly look for another company that makes them feel appreciated. 4. Customers value quick response time. The longer it takes for a company to respond to a customer’s question, the greater the feeling of overall dissatisfaction. To retain loyal customers, it is crucial for customer service agents to respond in a timely manner. 5. Flexible guidelines are better. Rules that are set in stone tend to leave customers dissatisfied. Instead, design guidelines that adapt to changing customer needs and train your employees to make decisions based within those guidelines. 6. Live Chat and Text Messaging are here to stay. More businesses will use Live Chat and Text Messaging to interact proactively with their customers in 2015. The key is a thoughtful campaign that will make your customers feel valued without putting them off with a barrage of meaningless text. Make it as easy to opt out as it is to sign up for e-mail, text, SMS, and other communication channels. 7. Customers rely on great reviews. Many customers look at review sites like Trip Advisor and Google ratings before choosing a product, restaurant, dentist, etc. Focus on increasing five star reviews of your company in these sites by providing a great product and excellent customer service.
Telesales Strategy for Profitability in 2015
Your company can significantly increase the bottom line by making small adjustments to each part of the business process. It begins with lead generation from three customer categories: new, current, and past customers. Don’t focus too much on attracting new customers that you forget your existing customers. With a solid marketing plan, a potential customer will initiate contact with your company. The job of your telesales team is to convert these leads into buyers. At the very least, you should have a script that allows your team to deal with customer questions in a way that is consistent with your brand and values. Monitor the average number of sales (total sales/total transactions) and figure out a system to increase this number. It can be in the form of discounts, packaging redesign, a new product mix, upselling a complementary product or a combination of these tactics.
Outsourcing Customer Service and Telesales to the Philippines
One of the best ways to improve productivity, reduce risk, and increase profits is outsourcing some of your non-core activities. It can be difficult to build, oversee, and monitor a dedicated customer service and telesales team in-house, particularly if you run a startup or small business. Even if you own a large company, establishing a separate customer service hub overseas can greatly streamline your processes and cut costs. The Philippines is one of the world’s top telesales and customer service provider. Small businesses and large corporations alike have long established operations in the country due to its growing talent pool that is college-educated and highly proficient in English. Best of all you can find a BPO provider in the Philippines such as Sourcefit, which offers custom solutions that any type of business can leverage. The flexible service delivery models can be tailored for small, medium-sized, and large businesses. The ultimate advantage is gaining access to top quality sales and customer support services at the lowest prices in the industry.
Click on this case study for a great resource on customer support and telesales outsourcing in the Philippines. Or contact Sourcefit. We’ll help you build your own team of experienced professionals in the Philippines. Share This: ]]>
<![CDATA[ IT Outsourcing Growth & Offshore IT Services Trends in 2015 ]]> Sourcefit Philippines, Outsourcing Blogs: IT Outsourcing Growth & Offshore IT Services Trends in 2015IT outsourcing and offshoring IT services rose to an all-time high of almost 20 percent in the first three quarters of 2014 in the U.S., according to a report by the Information Services Group (ISG). ISG expects a similar trend in 2015 based on the number of business process outsourcing (BPO) contracts for IT support, IT services, system/network admin services and market growth. This is in contrast with earlier predictions in 2014 that about 30 percent of IT services would be brought back in-house as companies grew more confident about managing their own processes. Besides a surge in market confidence, experts say that IT outsourcing and IT services in 2015 are headed toward: Customization. Many companies lack the expertise, in-house talent and budget to build, support and oversee IT services that streamline business processes and improve the bottom line. The need for custom delivery models and processes will also drive partnerships with a third party that can guide your company toward success. Outsourcing as needed. Companies who have their own IT team are expected to augment their in-house staff with outside experts on as needed basis. Many multinational corporations are already using this approach of combining internal capabilities with outside help when necessary. Super data centers. Small data centers are now capable to handle much more as performance increases per kilowatt and upgrades add power. This change requires asset use analysis, refresh cycle reduction, and core boosting to manage utilization levels effectively and retain a company’s footprint. Integrated data centers. Commonly separate networks, servers and storage will continue to be aggregated to optimize workloads and allow quick parts replacement. Resource management. Organizations will be more aware of energy use and KPI consumption, increasing the need for better-managed energy information systems. Mobile consumers. More people visited websites from mobile devices than from desktops in 2014. The mobile consumer demands a change in mindset for many companies as e-commerce merges with the brick and mortar shopping experience. The sheer number of devices that users demand platforms on makes building them a challenge, but cloud-based services and powerful data centers are bridging the gap and addressing security issues. Mobile app development trends include multiplatform development, wearable tech, and new methods of customer engagement. Mobile CRM. Startups are leading the way in customer relationship management (CRM) services designed for mobile. While established vendors have trouble with their one-size-fits-all CRM approach, startups are innovating and bringing better mobile CRM applications to the table. Mobile analytics. More sophisticated analytics and monitoring tools will allow companies to find out what content their workforce is accessing and what to do when issues arise. Better analytics tools are also available for CRM, Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP), and other platforms. More cloud service options. The convergence of IaaS (infrastructure as a service) and PaaS (platform as a service) will drive app building, testing, and deployment. Companies will also adopt hybrid cloud techniques, but are advised to develop after private services and public delivery have been integrated. As systems increase in functionality, complexity also increases. It’s important to get the most out of IT spending with the right enterprise software. Virtual networks. Virtual networks mean increased automation, improved agility, simplified design, network management integrated with IT workflow systems, and other changes in interaction and processes. Experts suggest making storage virtual, evaluating inputs, trimming what is unnecessary, and organizing and prioritizing what remains. Integration of business and social media. Social media, business services, and the internet are expected to consolidate through mergers and alliances, becoming genuineB2B and B2C business tools.
IT Outsourcing and Offshore IT Services Continue to Grow
As economic conditions improve in the U.S. and confidence in the market grows, corporate clients are increasing their ITO spending as well as expanding the scope of ITO contracts and range of services. However, outsourcing research and analysis firm NelsonHall warned that there’s still room for improvement as offshoring providers compete and drive prices down. In 2015, the best companies to take advantage of the ITO upswing are those who are able to provide the best customer experience. Providers must have the right platforms and the right talent to provide top notch service and attract buyers. Businesses will focus on outsourcing non-core operations to improve profitability and reduce costs, everything from IT support to systems administration to infrastructure. Businesses will continue to adopt cloud-based services. Cloud computing offerings are going to be more diverse and will cater to processes traditionally handled by in-house IT teams. Besides Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), mobile and big data application development will also move to the cloud. Many multinational companies are going to leverage the power of offshore cloud services as data security improves, compatibility issues are sorted out, and management tools mature. CIOs will manage data depending on sensitivity and complexity, and those who adopt in-house and cloud-based models will be the most successful.
IT Outsourcing to the Philippines
As the volume and variety of data hitting the public and private sectors continue to snowball, the need to manage data effectively will also grow. If your company is already making deep cuts but is still not streamlining process workflows or making a difference on the bottom line, it may be time to outsource IT services to the Philippines. The Philippines’ IT-BPO sector is one of the major contributors to the country’s economic growth, and forecasts are optimistic for the coming year. The Philippines has the infrastructure and rich talent pool of experienced, English-speaking IT professionals and support staff to take your business to the next level.
Click here for a great resource on IT offshoring in the Philippines. This popular post, IT Outsourcing (ITO) & IT Outsourcing to the Philippines, can also help you in the decision-making process. Or contact Sourcefit, an outsourcing company in the Philippines, for a free, no-risk consultation with an expert. We’ll help you explore the opportunities. Share This: ]]>
<![CDATA[ Web Design, Web Development & Graphics Design Outsourcing: 2015 Trends ]]> Sourcefit Philippines Outsourcing Blog: Web Design, Web Development, Graphics Design Outsourcing 2015 TrendsWeb design, web development and graphic design and offshore outsourcing these tasks are in for some changes in 2015. Building on trends from 2014, these changes will greatly impact businesses (those that outsource their web design and those that have in-house teams) and the design community. What should your outsourced or in-house design and development teams be on the lookout for? What trends will affect productivity and the bottom line? Industry watchers present the top trends making waves now and in the coming year. Not all will be adopted at the same rate, but companies should make strategic decisions about them next year and beyond. Here’s what’s in store for web development and design:
Responsive Design
Responsive web design is a web design approach that provides the best viewing experience across all devices, from desktop to mobile. The page is easy to read and navigate without much scrolling or resizing, whether you are on a tablet, PC or iPhone. Sizing is fluid rather than absolute, allowing the page to adapt visually to whatever device you are using. Responsive design has become the new standard and is here to stay.
Scroll over Click
In 2015, more website visitors will come from mobile devices than desktops, ushering the era of scrolling over clicking. The result can be an endless barrage of information for desktop users, but you’re going to keep your mobile users happy by providing a more dynamic interactive experience.
Affordable Typography
Beautiful typography is big now and will continue to dominate websites in 2015. Beautiful typefaces tend to be expensive, leaving companies with tight budgets out of the fun. Not anymore. Type kits are going to be more affordable and accessible to designers wanting to make a splash with eye-catching fonts.
Big Backgrounds
Beautiful pictures and videos that fill the entire page will continue to mesmerize viewers, or at least make them pause and consider what you are selling. Not just any image will do, however. Make sure it is thoughtful, relevant, and arresting, not gimmicky or slapdash.
Semi-Dimensional Design
Google is the leader of flat design and now of semi-flat design. Instead of flat geometric shapes, the shapes get subtle shadows to make them look like more like real-world objects without being full-on three-dimensional.
Transparent Buttons
Transparent or ghost buttons are those empty geometric shapes typically bordered by a very thin line and paired with an unobtrusive sans serif font. Ghost buttons are everywhere and many websites aiming for the minimal, stylish look are adopting them.
Unique Branding
Design elements like typefaces, content, interactive page elements and even color that embody your company values and philosophy are going to be what visitors are going to respond to and connect with. Make sure that your web presence is as solid, memorable and unique as the product or service you are selling.
Mobile Computing and Design
As more people use mobile devices, web development will focus on the needs of consumers rather than device design alone. Better security, simple user interfaces, and smarter interactions should improve the customer experience.
Smart Machines and the Internet of Things (IoT)
The Internet of Things is a scenario where man-made or natural objects are connected to the internet and are able to transfer data over a network. Today, it mostly refers to machine to machine communication in the energy and manufacturing industries. According to a Business Insider intelligence report, the Internet of Things will be more than double the size of the mobile device, PC, connected car, and wearable tech market by 2019. Smart devices will drive the development of elegant systems that respond appropriately to their surroundings. Smart machines like robots, intelligent operating systems, and advanced virtual assistants are already here and rapidly evolving. They won’t become mainstream in 2015, but when they do, it will be the most disruptive moment in IT history.
Outsource Web Design, Development & Graphics Design to Stay Productive and Profitable
Web development and design outsourcing had a banner year in 2014, and analysts predict the trend will continue to 2015 as the corporations and businesses grow more confident about the market. As companies aim to provide a better experience across all devices for their customers, cutting edge technology and infrastructure along with specialized design and development skills will be in demand. If you run a fledgling company or a startup, the best way to stay relevant and compete with the big players in the industry is to outsource web development and design to an experienced third party. Large firms can also benefit from the rich network, domain expertise, and advanced technology that web development and design firms offer. As cloud and mobile computing continue to promote the growth of integrated apps that can be accessed by all devices, companies will need more agile programming to deliver flexibility in the digital business environment. It can be difficult to recruit and train the right professionals for the job. Instead, you can save time and money by partnering with an offshore provider with a proven track record.
Web Development and Design Outsourcing to the Philippines
The Philippines is one of the world’s top outsourcing destinations, and it is expected to remain a major global outsourcing player for years to come. Traditionally a call center hub, the Philippines is expanding offerings to accommodate the growing demand. The country’s business process outsourcing (BPO) providers offer topnotch web and application development and design at the lowest industry prices, along with cloud-based services and other high value IT services. Any size and type of business can access a rich pool of skilled and experienced web developers and designers who communicate excellently in English and are able to work in all time zones. Philippine providers make it so easy to get started by offering risk-free consultations. There is no obligation until you find the perfect custom solution for your business.
Is Outsourcing Right for your Business?
To learn more about offshoring web design, development and graphics design, please visit Web Design Experts Web Development Team and Graphic Design. Or click here for a free, no-risk consultation with an expert at Sourcefit, an outsourcing company in the Philippines. We’ll help you explore the opportunities. Share This: ]]>
<![CDATA[ Software Development Offshore Outsourcing: 2015 Trends ]]> Sourcefit Philippines, Outsourcing Blogs: Software Development Offshore Outsourcing: 2015 TrendsSoftware is getting more complex and there is no turning back. While the internet of things (IoT) where everything is connected to the web still belongs to a distant future, it’s hard not to ignore where software is going. Today, it is not only communication and entertainment devices that are Wi-Fi-enabled, but also common household items like lights, which can automatically change lighting depending on the weather. Software powers core business activities in virtually all industries. Through applications, doctors access patient information while on the go, people book flights and concerts, and buy merchandise. The financial services sector heavily relies on special software and employs developers by the thousands to create apps that serve the customer, improve productivity and profitability, and reduce risk. The approach required to build this type of software is completely different from traditional development methods. 2015 key development trends like design thinking, open source development, big data, and refined testing will drive the creation of software that support critical business processes. Experts say these trends will have a major impact on IT and business strategies for the coming year.
Design Thinking
Design thinking is a design strategy that is people or customer-centered. Developers focus on the needs of consumers instead of a specific technology. The process includes observation, gathering ideas, making a prototype, and testing. Experts and multidisciplinary professionals come together to throw ideas around and ultimately create something of value for the end user. In 2014, the increasing complexity of software forced big development changes. Design thinking will drive software development in 2015, with the goal of creating applications that serve the consumer. The age of the consumer will foster reinvention of many organizations, and design thinking will be critical in the product development process. For those with little experience in design thinking, you can start with brainstorming sessions with your team members and identifying steps in the development process where a more customer-centered approach can be integrated.
Big Data
Big data is extremely large collection of data that can be analyzed for patterns and trends. The data set is so large and complex that traditional data processing methods may have difficulty handling it. With big data come challenges like security, privacy, capture, search, storage, transfer, and others. In 2015, businesses are going to invest their IT budget in big data management. This is a great opportunity for software developers to improve existing products and create applications that track product use based on collected data. The transition to cloud computing and cloud services will also drive new updates and releases that will keep developers busy. Big data is going to be commercialized as enterprises gather more information about business processes, competitors, and customers. Companies will start to sell this data and create products based on big data. If you have disparate collections of data for every department, it is time to develop a comprehensive view of information related to your product or service and for all business processes. Those who want to commercialize existing data must obtain consent from consumers. You can choose to develop the platform in-house or work with a third party to create the application.
Refined QA and Testing
About a fourth of the IT budget is spent on quality assurance and testing, and many companies plan to increase the percentage. With so many options in the market today, customers can easily switch to another application if yours is slow, buggy, or difficult to use. Sophisticated QA and testing is necessary to ensure that your applications not only perform as advertised, but also exceed expectations. How do you to test in a fast-paced environment where development and releases never stop? Agile testing is the answer. This method requires big changes to traditional processes. You may need to increase automated testing and change organizational structures. Firms who lack experience in sophisticated testing can partner with a third party that has a background in product development.
Open Source Development
In 2014, established companies started embracing open source development, adopting big data open source platform Hadoop for example. Open source has also been making waves in software development, and this will continue in 2015. During a time when speed to market is more critical than ever, developers who can recycle open source code and components have the edge. Open source development often means lower costs, but companies are now using it for strategic benefits like improved quality, speed, and agility as well. Many developers are also attracted to working in an open source community, allowing you to hire the best people for your project. Start examining the pros and cons of integrating open source code in your software development initiatives. To ensure quality, make sure to work with popular open source code monitored by an active community.
Software Development Outsourcing in the Philippines
It can be difficult to design software and applications that wow your customers if you have little experience with big data management, design thinking, open source environment, and refined QA and testing. You can recruit people and build your own in-house team, but this can be very expensive and time consuming. Consider outsourcing part or all of your development needs to experienced Philippine providers. The Philippines is one of the world’s premier outsourcing destinations, and its IT professionals are skilled, highly-motivated, and communicate excellently in English. IT services and infrastructure are customized to each business; you can hire one partner or build an entire team of developers for a short-term or ongoing project—and at the lowest industry prices. IT outsourcing companies in the Philippines make it so easy to get started with a no-risk consultation. There is never any obligation until you find the perfect match for your needs. For more information, here’s a great resource on Software Development outsourcing.
Is Outsourcing Right for your Business?
The list of questions on Should you Outsource may help you in the decision-making process. Or contact Sourcefit, an outsourcing company in the Philippines. Click here for a free, no-risk consultation with a member of our upper management team who can help you assess the opportunities and possibilities. Share This: ]]>
<![CDATA[ Back Office Outsourcing: Industry Trends in 2015 ]]> Sourcefit Philippines, Outsourcing Blogs: Back Office Outsourcing: Industry Trends in 2015Back office services are a key component of any successful business. Back office refers to administrative and support functions that include accounting, record maintenance, clearances, contracts, and human resources. Back office services are just as important to the bottom line and customer satisfaction as the prominent front office sales and production component. 2014 has been an incredible year for technology, and trend watchers expect advances in IT to continue to define the modern workplace and impact strategic business decisions.Product development, sales and marketing, back office functions and virtually all business processes will be increasingly centered on the consumer and will be underpinned by: • Domination of smartphones, tablets and supercomputers • Cloud-based services • Cloud-based storage • Integration of e-commerce and brick and mortar stores Third party providers and back office outsourcing will continue to be relevant for companies looking to cut costs, increase profitability, and reduce risk. Back office providers, especially in emerging markets, are under intense pressure to expand their offerings and innovate. This means more options for businesses who want high-quality, reasonably priced staff and services. It takes time for new technology to be adopted by the wider public, so the impact of these advances will be gradual. Any change will mean trade-offs. For business decision-makers, the key is to change not for the sake of being an early adopter, but to add value, make your customers happy, and improve profitability.
Cloud Accounting predicts that 2015 will be the year the “cloud bursts.” The case for enterprise cloud was made in 2014, and businesses will increasingly adopt cloud-based services in 2015 due to faster innovation, better flexibility, mobile access, cross-product integration, and wider connectivity. Should you decide to transition a part or all services to the cloud and replace legacy systems, your staff will need new software and skills. For businesses that do not have the budget or inclination to build their own in-house team, a back office service worth considering is cloud accounting. Cloud accounting became a $1.7 billion industry in 2014, and it is expected to grow to $2.16 billion by 2016. Cloud accounting is an excellent and cost-effective way to update legacy systems and integrate current software with more accessible and innovative systems. Other benefits of cloud accounting include a real-time view of finances, automation of manual tasks like invoicing, lower infrastructure expenses, increased security, and easier collaboration.
Document and Data Processing
Enterprise resource planning (ERP) software is a suite of applications intended to collect, store, manage and interpret data. In 2015, start-ups, medium-sized businesses, and large corporations will increasingly adopt mature enterprise resource planning software with improved SaaS security and privacy, in addition to on-premise and hybrid platforms. More documents and multimedia will reside in the cloud, with security features that allow staff and consumers to view, print and annotate documents without making unnecessary copies. The goal is to end endless email collaboration and the use of attachments that may pose a security risk. Cloud-based services can also provide editing capabilities, integrated messaging, and detailed analytics on usage of valuable documents. Many third party providers are now offering scalable data management solutions for companies who are unable or unwilling to invest in private software. 2015 is a great opportunity for providers to refine existing software even more and create better custom solutions. Productivity suites in the cloud are here to stay and technology that can crunch big data is going to be sought after in 2015. Big data solutions that allow companies to access insights into business processes affordably and quickly will be big as well. Companies that need the most up-to-date tools are going to transition faster from on-premise to cloud.
HR Support and Personal Assistants
HR support trend watchers predict that companies will step-up their recruitment and retention initiatives as the economy continues to improve and vacancy rates increase. Workforce intelligence is seen to be the key to better workforce management. Workforce intelligence is a concept that uses research, evidence, and analysis for strategic workforce planning. In 2015, organizations will leverage workforce intelligence to identify top performers, determine how compensation and other factors improve retention, and identify networks that produce the most top performers. From simply hiring to meet demand, HR will focus on more proactive workforce planning. Companies who want to stay on top of recruitment and make the most out of their existing staff can partner with workforce planning consultants or staffing providers offshore. An experienced third party that can manage short-term and long-term staffing needs is even more crucial in the face of new legislation like the Affordable Care Act. Siri, Alexa, and “intelligent” virtual assistants are going to be more sophisticated, but the day they replace human assistants still belongs in the future. Virtual assistants will continue to attract stressed out managers and business owners in 2015. VAs who can communicate excellently in English and multiple languages, easily adapt to mobile technology and cloud services, and charge reasonable prices for their services are going to be in demand.
Back Office Outsourcing in the Philippines
Business process outsourcing is as constant as innovation in 2015. Businesses will continue to leverage outsourcing to increase productivity, reduce risk and improve profitability while cutting costs. Companies will continue to tap emerging markets like the Philippines for low-cost, high-quality staffing and back office services. The Philippines remains one of the world’s top outsourcing destinations, and the percentage of its employable workforce is growing to meet global demand. Expect to see more varied, high-value offerings from many providers, even those whose traditional strength lies in call center support. Learn more about back office outsourcing in the Philippines by reading this popular post -- Why the Philippines Remains a Top Global Back Office Services Provider & BPO Destination.
Is Outsourcing Right for your Business?
Should you Outsource has a list of questions that may help in the decision-making process. Or contact Philippine outsourcing company Sourcefit for a free, no-risk consultation with an expert. We’ll help you determine the opportunities and possibilities. Share This: ]]>
<![CDATA[ How to Increase Productivity with Offshore Outsourcing ]]> Sourcefit Philippines, Outsourcing Blogs: How to Increase Productivity with Offshore OutsourcingProductivity is the ratio of output to input. Given the same amount of resources, company A is considered to be more productive than company B if company A creates more products or services than company B. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, outsourcing services or production to local providers can change the distribution of production. Offshoring can also affect business sector productivity if offshore workers are more productive than local workers, or vice versa. Most companies outsource because they save big money on labor, overhead and related costs. Other benefits of outsourcing are improved quality and productivity. You get better quality when you partner with a company with extensive experience in a particular area. You also gain access to the latest technology and efficient processes offered by outside experts. But how does outsourcing increase company productivity? When you outsource to a competent and skilled professional or third party, it’s like cloning your in-house team. You double your resources (particularly if you outsource to an overseas provider) for way less than if you hire full-time workers, and you free up time to focus on what you do best.
Why You Shouldn’t Do Everything
Some entrepreneurs and small business owners feel a loss of control when they are not managing every aspect of their business. But if you are spending precious time trying to perform every single task, you risk being underproductive. Remember that productivity is doing more with less, not simply “doing more.” For example, if your hourly rate as an app developer is $90 per hour, and you spend five hours a week on paperwork and payroll, you are an overpaid clerical worker. If you outsource these necessary but grueling tasks to someone who charges $60 for the whole thing, you save $120 a month! Besides the savings, you can increase profit by making new apps instead of working on non-revenue generating activities. And because of the lower rates, you can hire large number of people, multiplying productivity even further. Outsourcing is much more than a cost-cutting tool; it is increasingly seen as a strategic tool. By outsourcing certain activities, you minimize risk. When problems arise, the third party provider share accountability with you. You don’t need to invest in expensive equipment, infrastructure, technology, office space and maintenance; the provider takes care of these. If you’re stressed out from trying to juggle multiple things at once, and it’s taking a toll on your productivity, consider outsourcing. To find out if outsourcing is right for your company, identify your strengths and weaknesses, and tasks that you don’t enjoy doing. The key is to determine whether a non-core task could be performed by a third party at a lower rate, more quickly and efficiently.
Offshoring and Improving Productivity in Key Areas
Can’t decide which tasks to outsource? Ask yourself why you went into business in the first place or your mission as a company. Then list activities that you need to do but don’t generate revenue. This can be answering emails, website design, updating social media, making presentations and reports, HR, payroll and IT support and maintenance. Tasks that you hate doing can be outsourced as well. When you and your staff enjoy the work and you are fully immersed in it, you are more productive. Here are some key tasks that can be outsourced to improve productivity: Payroll Payroll is one of the most obvious tasks to outsource. It is far too labor-intensive and grueling, and requires specialized skills. Even if you enjoy tracking attendance and doing taxes, your time could be better spent on growing your company. Outsourcing payroll could also improve employment regulation compliance and minimize HR issues. Human Resources Like payroll, HR is not something most companies can claim as a core competency. Instead of hiring full time staff and building an HR team (very expensive), partner with an experienced HR and recruitment company that serve businesses in your industry. Outsourcing HR processes increases productivity by speeding up the recruitment process. The sooner you fill an open position, the more productive your company will be. Information Technology Information technology services range from infrastructure to management to support. Instead of overseeing IT process, partner with an experienced IT provider to keep your in-house staff focused on the essentials. Outsourcing IT also boosts productivity and efficiency by giving you access to the latest software, hardware and processes without worrying about upgrades and maintenance. Healthcare The healthcare sector is in for a big change with the upcoming ICD-10 implementation. Many businesses are investing in healthcare IT outsourcing for a smoother transition from the old system to the new. Consider outsourcing IT and healthcare services to better prepare for ICD-10 and help you focus on your core business. Design and Creative Services You could probably learn to design your company logo, letterhead, promo materials and website, but it would take much longer and the final look may not be as polished as a professional’s work. Outsourcing to website and graphic designers will save you both time and money. Social Media We all enjoy connecting with our customers or fans via social media channels like company blogs, Facebook and Twitter. But updating and targeting content and converting followers into customers can be time-consuming. Outsource social media management, content creation and related tasks so you can do what you do best.
Boost Productivity by Outsourcing to the Philippines
Few locations in the world have the right mix of cultural compatibility with the West, a growing labor force that communicates in English excellently, and the lowest prices in the industry than the Philippines. It is second only to India as a global outsourcing hub, and both small businesses and large corporations have established operations in the country to improve productivity and cut costs. Philippine IT-BPO companies make it easy for clients to get started with minimal risk. You have maximum flexibility when it comes to pricing, the number of people you want to hire and the kind of services that you want to outsource. Partner with a company that offers custom solutions to make sure you are meeting your objectives.
Is Outsourcing Right for your Business?
Getting Started is Easy and Risk-Free is a step by step guide that can help you learn more and get started on the outsourcing process. Or you can have a free, no-risk consultation with an expert . At Sourcefit, we’ll help you explore the possibilities and opportunities. Share This: ]]>
<![CDATA[ IT Outsourcing (ITO) & IT Outsourcing to the Philippines ]]> Sourcefit Outsourcing Blogs: IT Outsourcing (ITO) & IT Outsourcing to the PhilippinesBPO (business process outsourcing) has evolved to include information technology services previously deemed too technical to be farmed out. Today, emerging markets like India, China and the Philippines are offering everything from IT management to software programming to match the needs of global companies that range from startups to conglomerates.
What is IT Outsourcing?
Information technology outsourcing (ITO) refers to the practice of companies subcontracting information technology services, usually to third party providers in developing economies where labor costs are low. BPO and ITO go hand in hand; ITO enables BPO. As BPO firms improve their tech capability, they enable clients to move quickly and scale up and down. Companies use ITO for a multitude of functions, including software development, programming, infrastructure, IT maintenance and IT support. Many organizations use ITO to cut costs significantly. Studies show that ITO can slash your business costs by more than half annually. How does it work? For example, company ABC in the U.S. chooses to outsource software programming because it is significantly cheaper to hire a programmer in the Philippines than to hire, train, and support a local programmer. Company DEF, on the other hand, farms out IT management services to a third party because it takes too much trouble to buy, run and maintain its own data storage devices. Some companies prefer to establish dedicated IT headquarters outside the organization, but most outsource only a portion of their IT functions. A growing trend in ITO is called “hybrid offshoring,” a business model that features insourced and outsourced services. For companies looking to outsource their IT services to the Philippines, it’s great to have a game plan. Identify your strength and weaknesses, and evaluate which IT functions are better performed by an ITO provider than by your in-house department.
The Benefits of IT Outsourcing
The biggest reward of IT outsourcing is monetary for most business owners, but the benefits go beyond the bottom line. Back in 2000, Outsourcing Institute's Outsourcing Index listed several reasons you should offshore, and these reasons are equally relevant to ITO. 1. Cut and manage costs. When you outsource IT services or any function, you save money on hiring and recruitment, training, oversight, health insurance, retirement plans, taxes, infrastructure, overhead and other associated expenses. 2. Reduce risk. Companies have to keep up with technology to remain competitive. This can be expensive and labor intensive. Outsourcing to an experienced IT provider who knows what works and what doesn’t reduces your risk of making a costly mistake. 3. Access to specialized skills. No IT professional is an island. When you outsource an IT function, you are outsourcing to a team of skilled professionals, and you gain access to a collective pool of capabilities and experience. ITO to the Philippines also means that you gain IT professionals that possess the required training and certification. 4. Better workforce management. You hire local professionals to fill a need. IT outsourcing allows you keep your in-house employees doing what they do best instead of doing tasks they were not trained for. Other companies need IT professionals but don’t have the budget to hire a full-time employee. ITO lets you fill the need for the short and long term. 5. Handling difficult functions. An obvious benefit of ITO is letting experts handle an IT function or component of your business that is out of whack. You will still be involved once control is restored, but you can draw on resources from the right people. 6. Control management shakeup. Are you in the middle of a restructure to improve service and cut costs? You may notice that you don’t have the energy or time to devote to your non-core services. ITO is the perfect way to keep up with your non-core functions while reorganizing your company. 7. Increase focus. Excellent performance depends on people doing what they do best. It’s impractical and stressful to expect yourself to master every competency. ITO lets you focus on your core competencies while providers focus on theirs. 8. Reinvest funds. The money you save by outsourcing your IT functions can be reinvested into improving your service or product.
Why Outsource IT Functions to the Philippines?
While India remains the biggest player in ITO, the Philippines is fast becoming the alternative destination. According to data released by the Department of Science and Technology (DOST), the Philippines has the third largest IT talent pool in Asia Pacific, and the country’s ITO costs are among the lowest in the world. Industry powerhouse. Tholons’ listed Metro Manila as the no. 2 outsourcing destination in the world for good reason. PH is an “industry powerhouse,” with one of the most sophisticated and established offshoring and BPO industry in the world. The country was part of the first outsourcing wave before 2000, and the BPO and IT sectors show no signs of slowing down. Lowest ITO costs. Companies that outsource IT functions to the Philippines enjoy up to 70 percent lower costs than companies that forgo outsourcing, according to advisory and research firm Everest Group. More locations. ITO is expanding beyond the central business districts. Today, international companies are setting up HQ in Philippine cities like Cebu, Davao, Iloilo, and Sta. Rosa Laguna, which all made it to the Tholons top 100 list. Rich talent pool. The Philippines’ qualified talent pool is one of the deepest, with the BPO sector employing about 1 million people as of 2014. It has never been easier for international companies to connect with and leverage the expertise of the country’s talented programmers, software developers, designers, and IT administrators. Excellent cultural compatibility. One of the biggest advantages of outsourcing your IT functions to the Philippines is the country’s high cultural compatibility with the West. Majority of the country’s labor force is highly proficient in American English, and Filipinos enjoy strong historical ties with the U.S. To learn more about IT Outsourcing please read IT Support: System / Network Admin Outsourcing.
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<![CDATA[ Why NOW is the Best Time to Offshore to the Philippines ]]> Sourcefit Outsourcing Blogs: Why NOW is the Best Time to Offshore to the Philippines Outsourcing is an ever-evolving sector, and the new wave is automation. Companies have progressed beyond establishing HQs in developing economies and hiring providers for non-core services. The current landscape is one dominated by machines—and clients. Does automation and near-shoring render outsourcing to countries like the Philippines irrelevant? Far from it. Robots are the future, but the newness and a lack of industry regulation mean that companies will take their time to adopt the technology. Besides, robots can never replace tasks that require complex human judgment. The challenge for the Philippines is to continue evolving to remain globally competitive. And the country is doing exactly that. From a solid call center background, it is moving toward higher value propositions like KPO, insurance, finance, accounting and other niche services. If you are an investor, NOW is the best time to offshore to the Philippines. Why? Three reasons: 1. No. 2 Outsourcing Destination in the World Manila is second only to Bangalore, India as the world’s top outsourcing destination, according to the latest Top 100 list by Tholons, the global investment advisory organization. Besides Metro Manila, the so-called “Next Wave” Philippine cities also joined the top 100: Cebu(8th), Davao (69th), Sta. Rosa, Laguna (82th), Bacolod (93th), Iloilo (95th) and Baguio (99th). Thanks to the joint efforts by local and national governments and the IT and Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP), there are no signs that the country’s BPO sector is slowing down. Manila remains strong as a Contact Support provider, but it is expanding into higher value-added offerings like Finance and Accounting (FAO), Information Technology Outsourcing (ITO), and other Knowledge Processes Outsourcing (KPO) services. 2. 1-Million Strong Workforce The Philippines is noted for its rich and deep labor force, composed of highly-motivated, college-educated, and English-speaking professionals. Now the BPO workforce has become even richer, employing about 1 million people in 2014. This is almost a tenfold improvement from the 100k-odd figure back in 2004. The BPO industry is one of the major growth drivers of the Philippine economy, providing well-paying jobs for both direct employees and support positions. Businesses tap into an extensive pool of talent at a fraction of the cost of hiring, training, and supporting local professionals. The move into KPO services also means that investors can now hire highly qualified people with specialized skill sets while keeping costs at a minimum. 3. Lowest Rent in Asia India and China remain premiere outsourcing destinations, but their steady economic growth is accompanied by high rental rates in the central business districts. As a result, more and more multinational companies are moving from leasing to buying office space in regions like the Philippines. Rental rates in the Philippines remain the lowest in Asia at $29 per square feet per year. Global real estate consultancy firm Cushman & Wakefield reported that while India or China is the present, the Philippines may be the future. While the country’s economic route is still emerging compared to India, the Philippines is a gold mine of opportunities for international giants. The most benefit comes from investing “sooner rather than later.” To learn more about the Philippines as an outsourcing destination in 2014, please read our blog Metro Manila Beats Mumbai - Philippine BPO’s growth for Q1 and the rest of the year.
Is Outsourcing Right for your Business?
Is Outsourcing for You? is a list of questions to help you decide if offshoring in the Philippines is a good fit for your business. Or contact Sourcefit for a free, no-risk consultation with an expert. Share This: ]]>
<![CDATA[ Why the Philippines Remains a Top Global Back Office Services Provider & BPO Destination ]]> Sourcefit Outsourcing Blog: Why the Philippines Remains a Top Global Back Office Services Provider & BPO DestinationThe Philippines is one of the world’s top destinations for business process outsourcing (BPO), IT (information technology), voice and back office services, according to the latest Global Service Location Index survey by consultants A.T. Kearny. A.T. Kearney pegged the country at the seventh spot, climbing two spots from number 9 in the 2011 survey. Out of 51 countries, the Philippines shared the top 10 with India, China, Malaysia, Mexico, Indonesia, Thailand, Brazil, Bulgaria, and Egypt. A.T. Kearney used 25 metrics to evaluate the attractiveness of a destination to potentially deliver IT, BPO and voice services. The metrics were based on responses to industry questionnaires, surveys, client experience reports, and data obtained from client engagements over the past five years. The metrics were grouped into three major categories: Financial Attractiveness (40%), People Skills and Availability (30%), and Business Environment (30%). The Philippines’ overall ranking rose from 5.65 in 2011 to 5.75 in 2014. The new ranking is the result of improvement in two key measures: business environment and people skills and availability. While the country dropped a few points in the financial availability measure, the other two metrics were enough to improve the overall score.
Outsourcing Industry Powerhouse
The Philippines has long been a premiere offshoring destination, but this ranking improvement highlights the attractiveness of the country not only for BPO and voice services, but also for back office functions like data processing and management, virtual assistance, HR support and accounting. Back office support is a mix of low-scale and high value offerings that can be bundled together to give clients maximum flexibility. A.T. Kearney dubbed the Philippines an “industry powerhouse”, with an export sector second only to the number one destination, India. Other factors that contributed to the new improved ranking include: • One of the world’s most sophisticated BPO industry • Highly-qualified and rich labor force • Expansion to higher value-added IT and BPO services • Numerous operating centers not only in Manila but across the country • Steady economic growth
Philippines vs. India
India remains the top offshoring destination in the world. The country is a leader in both skills and scale, providing virtually all offshoring functions: IT, BPO and voice. According to the National Association of Software and Service Companies (NASSCOM), that industry alone is responsible for 25% of India’s total exports, with IT services raking in $40 billion in exports. India continues its expansion into new services, including research and development (R&D), product development, and niche functions like healthcare and telecoms that require specialized skills. However, as India’s high-value offerings become more expensive and as rents skyrocket in the central business districts, more and more companies seek lower cost destinations. While not close to matching the sheer scale that India offers, the Philippines remains a top player in offshoring. The country is extremely attractive to small and mid-sized businesses looking for low risk and maximum savings. The environment is politically stable, the workforce communicates in English with excellent proficiency, and the skilled professionals possess industry-specific knowledge. The Philippines also continues to expand its service offerings and target niche markets.
Global Services Development Markers: Late 1990s - mid-2010s
A.T. Kearney’s 2014 survey tracked the evolution of back office services, from when companies first cut their teeth outsourcing to emerging markets to the current automation trend. This dramatic development spans two decades and shows how businesses adapt to technology and refine ways to make their presence felt in a global economy. From the beginning, it has always made sense to offshore non-core functions. It allowed companies to access rich talent pools around the world, usually at a significantly reduced cost, and gain greater exposure. For several businesses, offshoring was the stepping stone to taking their company global. The A.T. Kearney survey identified three “waves” of sequential development that occur simultaneously today. Before 2000. India was the pioneer market for offshoring, taking off in the late 1990s. The internet was young, telecommunications were much improved, and many companies required large-scale IT services. The first companies to set up centers in developing countries often built the HQs from scratch. Despite the lure of monumental savings, the operation back then was very complicated, involved, and expensive. Mid-2000s. The second wave found companies passing on non-core services to third party providers. The operation was more efficient, and the companies more selective. Some brought back key roles in-house. Mid-2010s. Automation is the name of the game, where robots perform routine tasks. ERP (enterprise resource planning) software automates repetitive, high-volume tasks for entire categories of services.
The Future of Offshoring
Businesses and entire countries are continually being transformed by the offshoring revolution. Small and mid-size businesses now join global conglomerates that take advantage of the reduced-cost BPO and back office services in countries like India and China. But as these countries deliver more high value propositions, countries like the Philippines are becoming much more enticing to companies looking to free up resources, concentrate on core functions and set up operations overseas. Despite the automation trend, there is still plenty of room for growth. Robots can never replace tasks that require human flexibility and complex judgment. The challenge for the Philippines and other outsourcing destinations is to adapt fast enough to technology and keep evolving to avoid irrelevance.
Is Outsourcing Right for your Business?
Getting Started is Easy and Risk-Free is a guide that can help you find out if outsourcing is a good fit for your business. Or you can have a free, no-risk consultation with an expert A member of our upper management will help you explore the possibilities and opportunities. Share This: ]]>
<![CDATA[ Metro Manila Beats Mumbai - Philippine BPO’s growth for Q1 and the rest of the year ]]> Sourcefit Outsourcing Blog: Metro Manila Beats Mumbai - Philippine BPO’s growth for Q1 and the rest of the year Metro Manila beat Mumbai, India in this year’s list of Top 100 Outsourcing Destinations! That impressive ranking from Tholons, a global business process outsourcing (BPO) research and investment advisory firm, shows the astounding growth of the Philippine BPO industry. The Philippine metropolitan region is now second only to Bangalore, India, which remains at the top of the list.
Tholons Ranking: Top 100 Outsourcing Destinations
Metro Manila begins the year at notch higher than its 2013 Tholons ranking and that’s further proof of consistent growth. In 2012, Metro Manila was in fourth place, behind Indian cities Bangalore, Mumbai and Delhi. The following year, the Philippine outsourcing destination was able to overtake Delhi to win third place. This year, Metro Manila bests Mumbai thanks to the Philippine region’s growth rate which has “remained consistent with previous years,” according to Tholons. The research firm further noted that even as contact support services continue to “characterize” the identity of the Philippines as an outsourcing location, there is a “notable increase” in non-voice services. Expansion into non-voice services, industry analysts say, points to the growth and maturation of an outsourcing destination. The list, a Tholons flagship project and recognized ranking for BPO destinations in the world, also includes six other outsourcing locations in the Philippines – Cebu, Davao, Sta. Rosa (Laguna), Bacolod, Iloilo, and Baguio.
Q1 2014 and Beyond for Philippine BPO
For 2014, the Oxford Business Group (OBG) reported a projected growth of 15% in revenues for the Philippines’ BPO sector. OBG cited the Philippine cities that made it to the 2014 Tholons list as significant contributors to the Philippine economy, “one of the country’s main sources of hard cash.” OBG also pointed to Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) data that show Philippine IT-BPO (Information Technology- Business Process Outsourcing) firms generating significantly larger revenues. In 2013, outsourcing firms in the country posted $13.3 billion export earnings, a 15% increase from the previous year’s total. This figure tops the $4.8 billion receipts from the tourism industry. Remittances from foreign workers, a total of $22.5 billion for 2013, remain the biggest source of foreign exchange in the Philippines In a separate report published in, the country’s central bank estimated $15.3 billion in total revenues for Philippine IT-BPO this year. Last year’s total revenues also saw a 15 % growth, jumping from $11.6 billion in 2012 to $13.34 billion. It’s exactly this growth and strength of the Philippine IT-BPO industry that was cited by international ratings agency Standard & Poor’s (S&P) among the factors that helped the country maintain its “stable outlook forecast and its BB foreign currency long-term bond rating.” In the same report from OBG, S&P credit analyst Agost Benard explained that IT-BPO revenues and earnings from foreign remittances are driving “current account surpluses” and offsetting the effects of weak fiscal profile and prevailing debts.
Philippine Outsourcing: Moving Up the Value Chain
These figures underscore the strength of outsourcing as a business strategy and of the Philippines as an outsourcing location. The main impetus is, still, to reduce overhead costs. As companies expand, ramp up or explore other areas of growth, they need to: 1. Get the talent they need to remain competitive. 2. Find ways to keep overall costs low. At the same time, the goal, particularly in this more competitive business environment, is to gain more value. BPO voice service companies that expand to the Philippines, for example, want to gain not only talented staff – in most cases, expanding to hire thousands of employees – for their workforce; but also more cost-effective operations and add language capabilities to be delivered to specific countries or regions. Growth in voice services often also expands to non-voice, with companies looking to add more value and other sources of revenues by also providing email or chat support and other non-voice services. Non-voice is expected to expand further as the outsourcing industry in the Philippines matures into providing a wider range of services. Tholons noted a considerable increase in Finance and Accounting Outsourced (FAO) services and other high value processes in Information Technology Outsourcing (ITO) and Knowledge Processes Outsourcing (KPO), along with the country’s continued success in the voice services subsector. This expansion to services such as back office transactions of financial and non-financial sectors, animation and transcription is seen to continue helping increase revenues and propelling the growth of the industry. Worldwide, the demand for non-voice talent continues to increase. In his paper “Transforming the Philippine Talent Value Proposition into an Enduring Competitive Advantage” Alejandro Melchor III, Deputy Executive Director at the ICT Office at Department of Science and Technology pointed to an Information Scientists New McKinsey Global Institute Report that shows that the “United States alone faces a shortage of 140,000 to 190,000 people with analytical and managerial expertise and 1.5 million managers and analysts with the skills to understand and make decisions based on the study of big data.” And highly-skilled and qualified IT-BPO employees in the Philippines can fill these, as well as other employment opportunities.
Human Capital & Government Support for PH IT-BPO
Aside from expanding further into non-voice services, the other keys to sustained growth in the Philippine IT-BPO industry are human capital and government support. Hiring outsourced employees in the Philippines allows for flexible staffing options and and the ability to hire quality employees at a fraction of the cost of hiring locally. Human capital has always been one of the biggest resources of Philippine IT-BPO. The talent base is composed of English-speaking and English-educated people, mostly city-based and technically-proficient. The literacy rate in the country is one of the highest among the IT-BPO hubs in the world. Filipino BPO employees are also known for their domain expertise, cultural adaptability, exceptional work ethic and service orientation. Government support and a business-friendly environment, which have helped push the Philippine IT-BPO industry to the top of the global outsourcing rankings, are also likely to drive sustained growth. World-class and cost-effective infrastructure includes telecom, connectivity, network, office space and transportation. The Philippine government has also supported state technical training for IT-BPO jobs and provided a business-friendly environment. The article “The Philippines: Better Business Process Outsourcing” on the Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP) website reports that the current administration announced further strengthening of the favorable environment by reducing bureaucratic procedures and granting tax holidays to BPO-related investments. In the IBPAP article “Manila overtakes Mumbai as world’s No. 2 outsourcing destination,” Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Undersecretary Louis Casambre attributed the improved Tholons rankings to the Next Wave CitiesTM program of the DOST-ICTO and IBPAP, a project established in 2007 to develop globally preferred IT-BPO destinations and the “development of required ecosystem to prop up Information Technology and Business Process Management.” As more and more companies across the globe recognize the continued strategic value of outsourcing to cut costs, develop process equity, increase productivity and business efficiency, and make product and service innovation possible; global outsourcing will remain a formidable industry. In the Philippine BPO industry, the target for 2016 according to IBPAP is $26 billion in revenues and 1.3 million jobs. And, of course, higher rankings and more Philippine cities in the Tholons top 100 list.

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<![CDATA[ Politics, Economics, and Hot Buttons: G8 Countries and Outsourcing ]]> Sourcefit Philippines, Offshoring Blog: Politics, Economics, and Hot Buttons: G8 Countries and Outsourcing“The topic of offshore outsourcing is as much a political topic as an economic one, and perhaps even more so.” - N. Gregory Mankiw and Phillip Swagel You know it’s presidential election time in the United States when outsourcing becomes a hot topic for political debate. This time, it’s U.S. President Barack Obama versus the Republican candidate Mitt Romney. CBS News puts the exchange of words this way: “A simmering campaign feud over outsourcing has boiled over, with the president's campaign and Mitt Romney's accusing each other of lying about Romney's record at the helm of Bain capital.” The feud revolves around Obama’s assertion that Romney had leadership experience in "companies that were pioneers of outsourcing.” The Romney camp, on the other hand, insists that the claim is a “distortion” and that there is no evidence that Romney, when he was at the helm of Bain Capital, was responsible for sending jobs outside the U.S. In short, favoring outsourcing – or even just seeming to favor outsourcing – during election time is bad for your political health.
Outsourcing Goes into Mainstream Consciousness
When politicians bring up the topic of outsourcing to the public and thrust it into mainstream consciousness, it becomes more than economic topic – as N. Gregory Mankiw and Phillip Swagel, who co-wrote the Harvard University DASH (Digital Access to Scholarship at Harvard) paper titled “The Politics and Economics of Offshore Outsourcing,” said – but also, a political topic; and a compelling one at that. Harvard Economics professor Mankiw knows this first hand from his experience as the chairman of the national Council of Economic Advisers (CEA) under the George W. Bush administration. He once wrote in the CEA Economic Report of the President in 2004 that outsourcing of jobs by companies in the U.S. is “probably a plus for the economy in the long run.” These sentiments about outsourcing quickly became the focal point of a political uproar in 2004 -- also a presidential election year -- which saw politicians claiming a link between offshore outsourcing and the sluggish recovery of the American labor market in the first few months of 2004. When you think about it, any aspect of a country’s economy can easily become a political hot button – considering that these are issues that typically boil down to whether or not you can put food on the table. But why and how would a topic such as outsourcing create a political uproar in an advanced economy like the U.S.? What is the real public sentiment on outsourcing in advanced economies like the US and other G8 countries such as Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia, and the United Kingdom? What are the misconceptions, fears, and other conditions that shape public opinion on outsourcing in advanced or mature economies? Is public sentiment far from the reality? Could outsourcing – despite the negative impression harbored by a country’s general population – be beneficial to these advanced economies? How are the governments in these countries managing this difference between public opinion and reality when it comes to outsourcing? How should they manage it?
Financial Challenges and Public Perception of Offshoring
Examining “mature,” advanced economies like the G8 can certainly give us a perspective on how globalization – which makes outsourcing possible – is changing the world. The Group of Eight (G8) most industrialized countries in the world, established in 1975, is committed to a yearly forum on key global issues. The world, of course, has changed much since the mid-1970s. At this year’s G8 Summit, financial challenges, jobs, and growth dominated the discussions. Also among the broader questions tackled during the summit, according to The Washington Post’s Howard Schneider, included “how the developed world can bolster growth when governments are constrained by high debt and have little room for stimulus spending.” France’s Francois Hollande wanted to emphasize economic growth while Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti is hoping to gain approval from the Italian parliament on far reaching labor and regulatory policy changes that are said to be aimed at boosting growth in Italy. Canada, like the rest of the mature G8 economies, faces new challenges from an evolving international community. The country, as the web site Canada’s World puts it, should find out how to “best position itself in a decentralizing, globalizing world that is hungry for resources on one hand and fiercely competitive in knowledge-based industries on the other.” Unemployment is “at record levels in the developed world,” according to Schneider, so there is an imperative “to balance growth and austerity.” Obama, in an article published in The Telegraph, also said of the recent G8 summit that there was an “emerging consensus” on investing in infrastructure that creates jobs; adding that “growth and jobs must be our top priority. A stable, growing European economy is in everybody's best interests, including America's." Amid this atmosphere of financial challenges and the need to create more jobs in G8 economies, outsourcing can become an easy target. The most common public perception is that outsourcing takes away much-needed jobs in home countries and gives them to employees overseas. Here’s an example of how this issue of sending jobs overseas so easily came into play in the 2004 US presidential election as described in the insider account by Mankiw and Swagel entitled “The Politics and Economics of Offshore Outsourcing.” After the release of Economic Report of the President (ERP), “the Presidential campaign of Senator John Kerry seized on the issue of outsourcing, lambasting President Bush and his advisers for supposedly favoring it, and put forward a corporate tax proposal allegedly aimed at removing tax incentives for U.S. firms that move jobs overseas.” “Against the backdrop of a faltering labor market, outsourcing became synonymous in the public debate with job loss, and the transfer of jobs overseas came to be seen by non-economists as a major factor in accounting for the weak job market of 2002 and 2003. The release of the Economic Report of the President in early 2004 thus came at a time when the recovery was still not viewed as robust.” Mankiw and Swagel also noted that during the entire political uproar over outsourcing in 2004, the press coverage of the issue became more about the political response or the political reaction and the subsequent fallout and not about the actual substance of what was written in the ERP about outsourcing.
Economic Reality and the Benefits of Outsourcing
That was the public perception during the heat of the 2004 U.S. presidential campaign. The economic reality was quite different. Yes, there were jobs lost, but that’s not the complete picture. Mankiw and Swagel cited a study by Martin Baily and Robert Lawrence titled “What Happened to the Great U.S. Job Machine? The Role of Trade and Electronic Offshoring” which showed the following effects of outsourcing of services on U.S. employment: * “The impact of service sector offshoring to India from 2000 to 2003 was small compared to the overall change in service sector employment.” * “Lower level programming jobs were lost to India but overall computer employment was surprisingly strong.” * Baily and Lawrence “provide evidence that services offshoring to countries such as India will raise U.S. GDP and create jobs, including in manufacturing.” * Baily and Lawrence also found that “U.S. GDP, real compensation of employees, and real profits will all be higher in 2015 as a result of lower prices for services imports associated with outsourcing.” Economists Mary Amiti and Shang-Jin Wei found in their study “Fear of Service Outsourcing: Is it Justified?” – as cited by Mankiw and Swagel – that: * “Services outsourcing is small and plays little role in recent employment fluctuations, but possibly plays a meaningful role in accounting for productivity growth.” * Data for the United Kingdom that Amiti and Wei used also showed “that sectors with more services outsourcing do not have a slower rate of job growth than sectors without outsourcing.” * Regarding manufacturing industries in the U.S. Amiti and Wei, wrote in the 2006 report “Service Offshoring and Productivity: Evidence from the United States” – as cited by Mankiw and Swagel – that services that were offshored accounted “for around 11 percent of firms’ productivity gains from 1992 to 2000, but with little impact on employment.” Srinivas Durvasula and Steven Lysonski in their study titled “How Offshore Outsourcing is Perceived: Why Do Some Consumers Feel More Threatened?” pointed out: * “Proponents of offshoring, on the other hand, assert that it benefits developed and developing countries alike (Sturgeon, W. Offshoring: It’s better for everybody.). For example, while lower-skill jobs may be lost to developing economies such as India, new jobs take their place in the developed countries. These new jobs are superior in economic value due to their higher pay and skill levels.” * “As suggested by Nigel Holloway, director of executive services at the Economist Intelligence Unit, while some individuals may have been negatively affected, overall, offshoring has brought about positive change to the workforces and economies in developed countries (Sturgeon, W. Offshoring: It’s better for everybody.)” * With “the overall U.S. employment of 130 million and the projected creation of 22 million new jobs by 2010, the job loss due to offshoring would affect only 0.2 percent of the U.S. workforce (Drezner, D. The outsourcing bogeyman.). As for job security, Mankiw and Swagel cited research by Bradford Jensen and Lori G. Kletzer (“Tradable Services: Understanding the Scope and Impact of Services Offshoring”) which showed that while job security is lower in “tradables” or jobs that are likely to be outsourced, “Jensen and Kletzer find little evidence of weaker employment growth in tradable activities or occupations than in nontradable ones. Indeed, their results are consistent with the data on U.S. services trade flows that suggest U.S. comparative advantage in the provision of services.”
Public Perception of BPO in Advanced Economies
Why, then, with so many assurances and even more research that show the benefits of outsourcing does the general public in advanced economies tend to view outsourcing negatively? Durvasula and Lysonski’s 2009 study “How Offshore Outsourcing is Perceived: Why Do Some Consumers Feel More Threatened?” offers some insights. The authors pointed to a rapidly changing and more competitive world, as discussed in The World is Flat by Thomas Friedman, with myriad technological advances particularly digitization and “the web of optical fiber lacing the planet together” further accelerating globalization. “Countries that were historically not competitive suddenly have become juggernauts in the competitive race fostered by globalization.” So what are some of these perceptions and what are the conditions that shape them? Durvasula and Lysonski cited the following research: 1. J. Klein, R. Ettenson, and M. Morris’ “The animosity model of foreign product purchase: An empirical test in the People’s Republic of China” found that “in an economic sense, people exhibit a high degree of animosity if they perceive that foreign countries take unfair advantage in their trade practices.” 2. Durvasula and Lysonski further said that “with respect to outsourcing, there is a perception in North America (e.g., United States) and Europe (e.g., Britain) that countries such as China in manufacturing and India in information technology services, because of labor arbitrage, are taking away high-paying jobs from economically developed countries.” 3. S. Cocheo’s “Global think? Or job shrink?” which was published in American Bankers Association Journal spoke of “The Lou Dobbs Effect,” which highlights “the disfavor of offshoring. Implicit in this negativity is the belief that offshoring is unpatriotic and firms that offshore are “Benedict Arnold” companies; “Hire American” has become the watchword.” 4. A McKinsey and Company study titled Panel debates offshoring found that of the respondents in a large survey, 66 % believed that “American firms have a moral responsibility to hire Americans.” 5. Consumers who feel an economic threat – feeling ”threatened by economic forces that are beyond their control” – are likely to perceive “that foreign competitors can hurt them personally and/or their domestic economy are more likely to oppose offshoring versus those who do not feel this threat.” 6. The public may clamor for protectionist moves such as the provision in the 2004 US Congress legislation, mentioned in Baily and Farrell’s Exploding myths about offshoring, “prohibits federal agencies from offshoring some types of work to private companies that employ overseas workers” What are the forces that heighten the negative impression or the opposition to outsourcing? Durvasula and Lysonski mentioned the following: * ethnocentrism * economic animosity * patriotism, * perceived economic threat The authors added that “[a]s these forces intensify, consumers were more likely to have greater opposition to offshoring. If economic threat underlies the bias against offshoring, ethnocentrism may become an even more volatile and powerful force.”
Advantages of Offshoring in a Borderless World
In the previous subheading, the words “perception,” “perceptions,” “perceive,” “perceived,” “belief” and “believed” are highlighted to emphasize the fact that these perceptions about outsourcing and are not necessarily true. In fact, as countless studies have shown – including those mentioned by Mankiw and Swagel in the earlier subheading on economic realities – that outsourcing benefits industrialized economies; in much the same way that free trade and globalization, which has hugely benefited these mature economies, continue to offer a myriad number of benefits. It’s no surprise that advanced economies are all for free trade and globalization. In fact, the statement from the G8 leaders on the global economy following the recent summit not only emphasized, among other things, “the importance of open markets and a fair, strong, rules-based trading system” but also their “commitment to refrain from protectionist measures” and “to reduce barriers to trade and investment and maintain open markets.” The statement continued, “We call on the broader international community to do likewise. Recognizing that unnecessary differences and overly burdensome regulatory standards serve as significant barriers to trade, we support efforts towards regulatory coherence and better alignment of standards to further promote trade and growth.” The UK Prime Minister, in an interview with The Telegraph following the recent G8 summit also spoke of the “expansion of trade freedoms - breaking down the barriers to world trade and getting global trade moving again.” It makes sense, really, that advanced economies are all for free trade and globalization. In the race to reach, as Durvasula and Lysonski put it, more “market opportunities for multinational corporations to reach out to consumers in a more or less borderless world”, the G8 countries have a comparative advantage. And in this borderless world, where the competition for lower operation costs, efficiency, and productivity is growing even more intense, outsourcing just makes sense.
Balancing Act: Reap the Benefits of Offshoring and Lessen the Negative Perception
So it then becomes a balancing act: finding a way to reap the benefits of outsourcing while lessening the negative reaction of the public and lessening the impact on those directly affected. “While outsourcing involves real pain to the workers and families who face displacement, the empirical evidence suggests that the hysteria over offshore outsourcing is far out of proportion to its actual impact,” Mankiw and Swagel wrote. “While trade provides benefits for the nation as a whole, some people face dislocation. For example, workers with low skills within certain occupations such as data entry and low-end computer programming appear to have been affected by increased trade in services. The appropriate policy response is to help affected workers adjust to change rather than give up the gains from trade in the first place.” Mankiw and Swagel recommend a “two-fold” solution: 1. Improving the current policies that are aimed at adjustment assistance 2. Creating an economic environment that fosters strong growth and robust job creation “Within this cover, trade can expand into the new channels created by improvements in technology and telecommunications.” The authors pointed out that “some U.S. jobs are certainly lost to other countries” but “on the whole, firms involved with offshore outsourcing are not shifting net jobs overseas but instead are creating jobs both in the United States and in other countries.” Looking back at the political uproar in 2004 during the US presidential election campaign, Mankiw acknowledged that it gained steam because, from a communication perspective, he made the tactical error of emphasizing the gains from trade before referring to the “dislocation of affected workers.” He also mentioned that some of the statements lacked clarity and could be – and were – easily misinterpreted to mean that he praised the loss of jobs or did not care for the loss of jobs in the U.S. Throughout the presidential campaign, President George W. Bush’s team countered Sen. Kerry’s attacks on outsourcing by pointing out that not engaging in free trade and outsourcing is “a retreat into economic isolationism” which could lead to economic decline. While declaring support to free trade and extolling the benefits of open markets, Pres. Bush’s team also referred to the opposing side’s “economic pessimism” and a “defeatist” mindset that seemed to view “an America that could not compete.” Mankiw and Swagel expressed no doubt that the “discontent arising from outsourcing will be an issue for politicians and economists alike for the foreseeable future.” And it’s up to the governments and policy makers to manage this balancing act. The bigger issue, one that encompasses the issues on outsourcing, takes us back to questions posed by Canada’s World; and these questions could just as easily refer to any of the G8 countries: How do mature or advanced economies face the new challenges of a “decentralizing, globalizing world”? And how do political leaders communicate these challenges to their constituents to build consensus toward effective policy making?
Is Outsourcing Right for your Business?
Learn more about the Benefits of Outsourcing. We can also help you get a better idea of the opportunities and possibilities. Get a free, no-risk consultation with an expert by completing our contact request form. Share This: ]]>
<![CDATA[ PROMOTING EQUALITY, PROMOTING DEVELOPMENT: Empowerment and Opportunities for Women in BPO ]]> Miles to Go From all indications, the empowerment of women has come a long way but there are still miles to go. Avivah Wittenberg-Cox, in her Harvard Business Review (HBR) article “Why Focusing on the Gender Pay Gap Misses the Point” mentioned PEW research that showed that 26 percent of wives in the United States earn more than their husbands. A Goldman Sachs study, on the other hand, as cited by Wittenberg-Cox, found that more women are starting American businesses or companies, that the buying power of women worldwide is increasing and that more women in the U.S. are achieving higher education, earning 6 out of every 10 bachelor's and master's degrees. Despite these statistics, however, a recent study conducted by Catalyst, and cited by Boris Groysberg in the HBR piece called “How Star Women and Star Men Fare Differently in the Workplace” show that there are still too few women climbing the corporate ladder in the US. In 2011, women accounted for only 16.1% of board seats; only 14.1 percent of executive officer positions and 7.5 percent of executive officer top-earner positions. Across the Atlantic, it’s not much better either. "What the U.S. Can Learn From Europe About Gender Equality in the Workplace,” the Harvard Business Review article by Sylvia Ann Hewlett, mentioned new data from the Center for Work-Life Policy that shows that women in Britain make up only 19 percent of Parliament and only 12 percent of corporate boards. More Women Managers in the Philippines According to Grant Thornton’s IBR, the proportion of women in senior management positions has been steadily declining worldwide since 2009. The Philippines ratio of 39% women in top posts is second only to Russia worldwide. The report added that 64 percent of the top Filipina executives hold senior finance positions or are chief finance officers. These figures bode well because, as McKinsey Southeast Asia Head of Public Affairs Penny Burtt said, a McKinsey study shows that gender diversity impacts businesses positively. "Companies with more women at the top tend to have more leadership capabilities, better decision making and better corporate governance," Burtt told’s Shivali Nayak. The local Information Technology-Business Process Outsourcing (IT-BPO) sector seems to show proportions similar to the IBR findings. According to the International Labor Organization – as cited by Tonyo Cruz in his report for – “young Filipino women dominate BPO jobs by up to 59.3 percent.” The paper “Night Work Prohibition of Women Workers in the Philippine Call Center Industry” by Dr. Robert Keitel and Melissa Dorothy Ledesma mentioned that “a large percentage of middle to senior management positions are also held by women.” Empowering Women The IT-BPO sector in the Philippines, as we know, has risen to become one of the leading destinations for IT-BPO and GIC (Global In-House Centers) in the world. According to the Business Processing Association of the Philippines (BPAP), the sector grew from US$100 million in total revenues in 2001 to an astonishing USD3.3 billion in 2006; and has since doubled its revenues every year. This high rate of growth has, of course, helped provide opportunities and benefits to women employees such as: * Financial independence – The paper “Night Work Prohibition of Women Workers in the Philippine Call Center Industry” said that “workers are drawn in to work in a BPO or Call Center because of the financial security it gives and its impartiality when it comes to age, status, etc. of the individual as long as they have the necessary skills needed for the job; specifically that of computer and communication skills.” Financial independence, with salaries that are typically above minimum wage and are available to a broader spectrum of women (and men, too), has given many women employees in the BPO sector the opportunity to provide for their needs and that of their families. Their compensation has also increased their spending power and has also led to positive effects for the local retail industry. And the fact that BPO companies in the Philippines are not just in urban centers in Metro Manila, but are also in other parts of the country, means that more women in more areas in the country are getting the chance to gain financial independence. * Opportunities for advancement – For a large number of women in the BPO sector, these employment opportunities open a door to more chances for advancement, not just financially and socially, but also in terms of career and skills. The sector is built to constantly offer training to update knowledge and usually offers career advancement and promotions. The paper by Keitel and Ledesma – citing figures from the Business Processing Association Philippines. (2007). ITES & ICT Sectors, viewed 18 March 2007. Makati City -- pointed out that BPO’s place “high emphasis on people and talent development resulting in a high level of activity and investment in training and coaching at all levels; companies spend an average of Php 21,000 - Php28, 000/year per employee for training and development.” Training is a chance to update skills as it also helps employees choose and forge a career path. It has also proven helpful for women who return to work after maternity leave and the like. * Opportunity to learn new skills and technical skills – The industry, like the technologies that power it, is fast paced and continuously changing and updating. Employees get to continuously train and learn or update skills. * Chance for fresh graduates – Fresh graduates, who have been turned down for jobs that require experience, are given the chance provided that they pass the training and continue to maintain standards of quality. The emphasis on recruitment, Keitel and Ledesma said – again citing BPA/P, 2007 -- is on “competency based assessment and behavioral assessment” or the “workplace readiness and job fit” as new hires are typically given “15-20 days training prior to start of work.” * Building skills and confidence – The skills acquired from training and day-to-day operations such as communication skills, technical knowledge and product knowledge go a long way to help add confidence and assertiveness. * Accomplishing more and achieving balance – The flexibility of the work atmosphere, according to authors Keitel and Ledesma encourages most employees to accomplish more with his or her time. This helps employees achieve balance in their work and personal lives. * Indirect benefits that help make life better for more people – These include better infrastructure, government support and areas evolving into better centers with better infrastructure facilities which benefit the employees and the rest of the residents near the area. The IT-BPO sector also contributes to the growth of, as well as the creation and support of jobs in real estate, security, transportation and other industries that support BPOs. * Gaining self-reliance and a better standard of living – The paper “Night Work Prohibition of Women Workers in the Philippine Call Center Industry” mentioned the following non-monetary benefits: leaves with pay, HMO and health programs, flexible schedules, off-setting, opportunity to negotiate part time work, bedroom or sleeping quarters, health programs, career leaves and breaks, study/training scholarship and subsidy, early retirement, club membership and cultural/religious leave. These non-monetary benefits also add up to a compensation package that has the potential to improve the standard of living. For countless Filipino women, the benefits of an above average compensation such as autonomy, self-reliance, freedom and the opportunity to have a better life are priceless. Makes Perfect Sense Continuing to make these employment opportunities within reach for more women in the country is not only just, it also makes perfect business sense. For BPO companies to continue growing at such astonishing rates and contributing to the growth of the Philippine economy, they need to meet the demands of a growing number of clients with, first and foremost, the best talent for the job. In June of last year, a law was passed to ensure that women would be allowed to work at night for more than 11 consecutive hours. This repeals the provisions of the Labor Code that prohibited night work for women and which forced BPO firms to constantly seek exemptions from the Department of Labor and Employment to allow them to employ women for work at night. Industry players and the Labor Department welcomed the signing of the new law as a move to give women equal access to opportunities for employment. The government also continues to find measures, including looking into laws and government incentives that can offer support to expanding BPO operations, providing more access to free training and assistance in getting employment in the IT-BPO sector. The Department of Education, the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority, the Commission on Higher Education and the private sector are working together towards training and education to avoid the talent gap and meet the strong demand. In 2011, Business Processing Association of the Philippines (BPAP) executive director for external affairs Martin Crisostomo said in an interview with the Philippine Star, the BPO sector hit $10.9 billion in revenues. For 2012 – as businesses abroad aim to concentrate on their core operations and become more competitive and with increased demand in the non-voice and voice subsectors of the Philippines’ BPO industry – the projected revenue of the local IT-BPO sector is $13 billion. The economic empowerment of women is, by all means, part of the big picture. As the Asian Development Bank (ADB) report titled “Paradox and Promise in the Philippines: A Joint Country Gender Assessment 2008” pointed out, “Enhancing women’s economic empowerment is, therefore, not only a question of promoting equality, but also of supporting the socioeconomic development of the country.” ]]> <![CDATA[ 24 Ways that SOPA and PIPA would affect SEO, Internet Marketing, Internet-based Jobs and Companies in the Philippines and Around the World ]]> SEO companies and Internet marketing firms, depend on social media sites, the game would change considerably. The social media sites, carrying the burden of being liable for users’ actions, would be forced to over-censor, be overly strict, or have an agonizingly slow process, or quite possibly, tend to just block or delete entries or links at the slightest indication of possible legal trouble. 15. “Linking to other sites would be tedious, time consuming and could potentially force the company offline,” according to Wikipedia. And after all that, there would still be no guarantee of exposure on US sites for your company or your product. 16. Also according to Wikipedia, some foreign (or non-US) sites would be prevented from showing up in search engines. Let me say that again – your own site or other efforts for SEO or Internet Marketing may not appear in search engines as the pending bills could bar search engines from linking to certain sites. Sean Flynn at added that this kind of “search blocking” that was included in SOPA and PIPA is “widely regarded as Internet censorship.” Timm also said in his blog entry posted on that the pending bills would empower the Attorney General to “de-list websites from search engines, which, as Google Chairman Eric Schmidt noted, would still ‘criminalize linking and the fundamental structure of the Internet itself.’” 17. Wikipedia pointed out that big media companies may seek to cut off funding sources for foreign competitors. Foreign competitors, of course, could be your company. 18. There would be a climate of uncertainty and restrictions where, for example, all your SEO efforts for the day could just disappear at the drop of a hat; just like that. The law is too powerful, far-reaching and too vague and full of loopholes that could easily cause the shutdown of companies or entire websites. 19. SOPA/PIPA could shut down/block blogs. So if your business depends on blogs, you would need a major rethink. The pending bills would make it the responsibility of the blog owners in the U.S. to police content, including those posted on the comments, for possible copyright infringement. This makes the blogs vulnerable to lawsuits and the possibility of being blocked or shut down. 20. The bills would change the search engine game. With sites that can be de-listed on search engines, preventing the search engines from linking with them, SEO strategies will definitely have to be re-imagined. Also, Union Square Ventures’ Brad Burnham, in his blog entry “The PROTECT IP Act Will Slow Start-up Innovation” on, mentioned that SOPA and PIPA would give a “leg up to foreign (non-US) search engines, DNS providers, social networks and others.” 21. Online forums would be affected. And if your Internet-based company relies heavily on online forums, you would be hit hard by SOPA/PIPA, too. Forums would carry the burden of policing the entire site, including posts and comments by forum members, for every possible copyright infringement. A mistake could lead to being shut down or blocked. And even malicious claims could do great damage. 22. Video sites like YouTube would be affected. Again, if your Internet-based work depends on video sites, better be ready for a big change if SOPA and PIPA go through. 23. Sharing and networking sites like, daily motion, and the like would be affected, again because of the burden that SOPA and PIPA would place on these sites. Such sites outside the US that face allegations of copyright infringement could be blocked in the U.S. and they would also not be able to use commerce and ad lines. 24. Suspension of sub domains. Julie Ahrens, on her blog on the Stanford Law School website, said that “ordering Internet service providers to remove any offending domain name would require the suppression of all sub-domains associated with the domain-- censoring thousands of individual websites with vast amounts of protected speech containing no infringing content.” WHAT HAPPENS NOW As of now, SOPA and PIPA have stopped – temporarily – their march in both the Senate and the Congress. After the protests, the White House released a statement that said, “While we believe that online piracy by foreign websites is a serious problem that requires a serious legislative response, we will not support legislation that reduces freedom of expression, increases cyber security risk, or undermines the dynamic, innovative global Internet." Both bills, however, are far from dead. Their proponents plan to bring them up for mark-up next month. Those who opposed SOPA and PIPA plan to – and should – remain vigilant so that the bills, as they are currently written, would not be passed. Jim Hedger of Digital Always Media – as cited by Miranda Miller in her blog entry on – said that the solution is to draft the bill with all parties represented. “I’d like to see people who understand how the information works; I’d like to see a cross-section of people at the table. Content creators, law professors, copyright holders, philosophers, the MPAA, and the RIAA, there’s a place at the table for them,” he said. “Whoever makes the media products should be at the table, along with people who actually understand the environment. It can’t just be up to the copyright holders. If it is, they’re just protecting their own interests at the detriment of the consumers and Internet users.” The resulting bill/bills should ideally be a balance between the rights of creators of content (the copyright owners) and the rights of web users to a free and open Internet. ]]> <![CDATA[ Outsourcing and Reinventing the Workforce: Understanding How Revolutionary Technology Drives Advances in Business ]]> <![CDATA[ Tips for Successfully Outsourcing SEO Processes ]]> Find a point of contact you can trust. Make sure the person you are speaking to is someone who understands your business and your goals. Do your due diligence. Is the company reputable; what is their own site like? Are the people managing your account invested in your success?
  • Look for transparency. Make sure you understand the whole process and how the company intends to achieve its results. Nothing comes easy in SEO and it takes time, especially in competitive industries. Simple guarantees mean nothing. If you spend six months of your time and the results aren’t there in the end then it doesn’t matter how cheap it was. Make sure the reporting is thorough and verifiable. Get the company to explain it to you if you don’t understand it. Find out where the work will be done. If any or all of the work will be done offshore make sure that you are comfortable with the quality controls that are in place.
  • Language is key. Search is all about language. Subtle differences in the phrasing of keywords can be very important. Outsourcing offshore can be extremely cost-effective but make sure you are comfortable with the language skills of the people who will be doing the work and make sure there are quality controls in place.
  • Find a balance of quality and quantity. Avoid simple numerical KPI’s such as a certain number of links or articles per month or even a certain search ranking. Again, make sure you understand the underlying fundamentals and make sure your SEO is being constructed with a foundation of quality and with long-term success in mind. This process is a marathon, not a sprint.
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    <![CDATA[ Outsourcing and the Power of One ]]> <![CDATA[ The Challenge of Offshore Outsourcing – Keeping it Real ]]> <![CDATA[ The 3 Competitive Advantages of Start-Ups and Emerging Companies in Offshore Oustourcing ]]> <![CDATA[ 5 Keys to Improving Quality in Offshore Business Process Outsourcing ]]> Sourcefit Outsourcing Blog: 5 Keys to Improving Quality in Offshore Business Process OutsourcingOne of the immediate concerns that arises when processes are outsourced overseas is whether or not quality standards can be maintained. As a provider of process outsourcing in the Philippines, we strive, of course, to deliver the highest standards of quality for the processes with which we are tasked; but there are challenges that must be overcome both by us and the client in order to achieve optimum results. Here are the 5 keys for assuring quality while also keeping costs as low as possible in an offshore outsourcing structure. 1. Create a Quality Assurance Plan. No matter how large or small the enterprise or what type of process is involved, from software development to teleservices; management must create a plan specifically devoted to quality assurance. The plan should cover the following points: a. At what points in the development/production process should quality be assessed? b. Who will carry out level one QA? c. Who will they report to? Who will manage them? d. What is their mandate? e. How/when/where shall QA findings be implemented in the development/production process? 2. If possible, implement a two-tiered approach where quality is systematically checked immediately at the offshore facility and then locally as well. Depending on the process, a certain percentage of output can be checked offshore and then a percentage of the QA’d output can then be double checked. 3. Utilize existing management and admin resources in the QA process. Especially if the budget is tight, utilize existing management to check output. Even if only a small percentage can be checked, the effect is exponential. Make sure that even this QA is scheduled and systematized with a clear reporting structure. 4. Make sure SLA’s are in place for each element of the process, including staffing, to be able to quickly remedy recurring quality issues effectively. 5. Use QA results to constantly improve processes.
    Is Outsourcing Right for your Business?
    Ultimately each business owner or manager must assess their individual situation and decide if the benefits of outsourcing outweigh the risks. Please contact us for a free, no-risk consultation. A member of our upper management team can help you explore the possibilities and opportunities in outsourcing to the Philippines. Tweet: 5 Keys to Improving Quality in Offshore Business Process Outsourcing Visit our other Channels: Sourcefit: Outsourcing in the Philippines on FacebookSourcefit: Outsourcing in the Philippines on TwitterSourcefit: Outsourcing in the Philippines on Google Plus ]]>
    <![CDATA[ 10 Keys to Outsourcing in the Philippines ]]> Sourcefit Outsourcing Blog: 10 Keys to Outsourcing in the PhilippinesI have tried to put together a quick reference guide here of strategies that I have seen implemented by companies that have been successful with their outsourcing projects in the Philippines. 1. Define your goals. Identify the metrics that need to be achieved for success and discuss these metrics clearly with your outsourcing provider. Your provider should be able to provide you with valuable input on reasonable production expectations. 2. Find the provider that feels right. Don’t focus too much on small price differences. Those differences don’t amount to much if your account is not receiving the attention it deserves or if you are unable to communicate well with your outsourcing provider. Make sure upper management at your provider is really invested in the success of your project. Don’t let yourself get stuck with middle management – and if it happens during the sales process you can be sure that it will happen once you have signed your contract. 3. Due diligence. Ask for references and follow them up. 4. Get your home team on board. If collaboration is required between offshore and in-house staff, make sure your in-house team buys into the concept. And if there are problems with in-house operations and processes; those same problems are likely to crop up again in outsourcing if they are not clearly addressed and resolved. 5. Communicate your vision. Your offshore staff wants to feel a part of something and they want to feel confident in product or service they are involved with. Your outsourced Philippine staff is highly adaptable and very willing to assimilate the corporate culture of their client. Make sure they have a clear set of expectations and try to remain consistent with those. 6. Create an efficient workflow and secure infrastructure. Implement secure tools for collaboration and electronic communication. Make sure that secure protocols are always followed. 7. Implement quality control. Quality control should be a discreet step in both offshore and onshore processes. Accountability must be constantly reinforced. 8. Assign a manager or designate a person in charge. There should be a clear pathway of communication and locus of responsibility within the organization. 9. Stay involved.You will always be able to provide special motivation to your team. Stay as involved as you can. Work with your provider to make your involvement efficient. 10. Start small and grow with success. If possible, test and refine your offshore processes on a smaller scale and then replicate successful strategies for managed growth.
    Is Outsourcing Right for your Business?
    Getting Started is Easy and Risk-Free can help you find out more about beginning and implementing your own outsourcing strategy. Or you can have a free, no-risk consultation with an expert. We'll help you determine the opportunities and possibilities. Tweet: A quick guide on the strategies implemented by companies that have seen #success with #outsourcing in the Philippines Visit our other Channels: Sourcefit: Outsourcing in the Philippines on FacebookSourcefit: Outsourcing in the Philippines on TwitterSourcefit: Outsourcing in the Philippines on Google Plus ]]>
    <![CDATA[ 5 Tips for Recruiting Outstanding Offshore Customer Service Agents and IT Staff ]]> Sourcefit Philippines, Outsourcing News:5 Tips for Recruiting Outstanding Offshore Customer Service Agents and IT StaffWith the rise of high quality VOIP services and powerful CRM applications that make remote collaboration easier than ever, more and more small and medium businesses are considering cutting costs by outsourcing their customer service and IT support staff to an offshore specialist. One of risks in following that path, of course, is that management will lose control of the process and that quality will suffer. And by quality I mean not only that quantifiable performance indicators will not be met, but also that the company’s unique vision and culture will not be communicated properly to the agents and subsequently to customers. The first step in averting that risk is to choose an outsourcing partner that offers close personal support and a custom solution for your business (such as Sourcefit!). In addition to that, however, there are some simple recruiting strategies that can help ensure that your offshore staff function as a seamless extension of your local team. 1.Look for past success. This might be promotions at past jobs, entrance to a top university, dean’s list, or some other accolade. The will to excel should show up somewhere. This is a must. 2.Make sure that your employee’s life will be reasonable. They must not live more than 1.5 hours away (and ideally 1 hour or less) and they must have stable care in place for their kids. 3.They should have experience on international accounts. Expectations for local Philippine accounts are quite different and even if the candidate’s English skills are adequate, the lack of international experience will lengthen training time and may have instilled habits that would need to be corrected. 4.Test, test, test. In addition to an English test, it is helpful to devise simple aptitude tests for any necessary skills. This provides an objective framework to compare candidates. 5.Introduce your performance metrics and expectations within the interview process. It’s never too early to begin communicating your expectations. If you follow these guidelines then you should be able to find staff who have the tools to get the job done and they will already be on their way to internalizing your expectations. Stay tuned for more tips on onboarding and integrating your new offshore staff.
    Is Outsourcing Right for your Business?
    Please visit our Customer Service Outsourcing and IT Support: System / Network Admin Outsourcing pages to learn more. Or you can have a free, no-risk consultation with a member of our upper management team. We’ll help you explore the possibilities and opportunities. Tweet: Strategies to ensure that your offshore #CustomerService & #IT staff work as a seamless extension of your local team Visit our other Channels: Sourcefit: Outsourcing in the Philippines on FacebookSourcefit: Outsourcing in the Philippines on TwitterSourcefit: Outsourcing in the Philippines on Google Plus ]]>
    <![CDATA[ The Document Scanning Industry – The Role of Outsourcing in the Movement Toward Scanning-to-Process ]]> <![CDATA[ Choosing an Outsourcing Destination: Philippines Versus India ]]> Sourcefit Philippines Outsourcing Blog: Choosing an Outsourcing Destination: Philippines Versus IndiaIndia was one of the first countries to develop a thriving offshore outsourcing industry and still attracts over 30% of the offshore outsourcing market. India was so successful, in fact, that it came to symbolize all that was right and wrong with the industry as a whole. Recently, the Philippines has made significant inroads in the market, with 6.1 billion in sales in 2008, trailing only Canada and India. There are a growing number of choices now for companies looking to cut costs by outsourcing business processes to offshore locations; and the choice of a location is one of the most important aspects of the decision-making process. Having outsourced in both countries, I’d like to share my first-hand experiences with other entrepreneurs to help them make more informed decisions. When I first considered outsourcing, I was running a Netherland-based start-up focused on mobile phone applications. One of the most serious challenges we faced was finding developers with the proper experience in our local market. So we tried everything, including job sites, networking, and expensive recruiters but we just could not fill our openings. Then, one of our business partners mentioned that they had been working with a small firm in India and were having great success with their outsourcing, so I thought that perhaps this was the answer to our problems. And in many respects it was, but our outsourcing journey had actually just begun. We did have some success with our Indian outsourcing effort. The company we chose came highly recommended by someone we trusted and we were not disappointed. They were honest and diligent and they were able to recruit some talented developers. The problems we eventually encountered had more to do with the nature of our development and larger issues facing the Indian outsourcing market in general than with our outsourcing partner. Our applications were related to social media and, as a small company, we needed significant input from our development team on issues such as user interface and features. In the end, while the coding was solid, the cultural differences made it difficult for us to get what we needed from our team. They simply didn’t use social networking the same way that our target audience did and, while we took responsibility for product design, we felt like we were missing vital collaborative energy. The other problem we faced was high turnover. The labor market in India was so overheated that employees could not be counted on to remain long, which really undermined the continuity of our project. Finally, these issues caused us to assess other options, including Eastern Europe and the Philippines. We decided that communication issues would make things difficult for us in Romania or Hungary so we began looking more closely at the Philippines. Again we worked through acquaintances and we were able to find reputable local partners to begin our project. We again found a rich pool of specialized developers, though not as many as in India. But while there were fewer numbers of developers, there was also less competition for their services. Once we got a team up and running we found more stability in the Philippines than we had in India. We found our Philippine outsourced team to be much more westernized than our team in India. They were also malleable in terms of assimilating our corporate culture, but we had to be quite clear about our expectations and we had to provide close supervision over the team in order for them to internalize our goals and processes. Our Indian team was less flexible and our staff there tended to have less variation in their approach to their work. In the end we decided to make a long-term commitment to the Philippines and we closed our Indian operations, but this was a decision based on the unique needs of our business. For other applications and for other types of businesses India might make the better choice. The key is to find a partner you trust and be thorough in vetting your new staff. Make sure that not only can they carry out the processes you require, but also that they can fit properly within your organization and reinforce your unique approach and vision. To learn more, please read the top post Metro Manila Beats Mumbai - Philippine BPO’s growth for Q1 and the rest of the year.
    Is Outsourcing Right for your Business?
    The Benefits of Outsourcing provides a list of advantages that can be great for your business. Get a free consultation from an expert at Sourcefit today. Simply fill out the contact form here. Share This: ]]>