By Mark Atterby
Most leading BPO and outsourcing providers are offering clients flexible outsourcing location options. Datamark research highlights that these location options include at-home; on-site; off-site within the same city; off-site at a lower-cost-of-living city; nearshore; farshore; and blends of these arrangements [i].
It’s all about finding the right skills at the right price and how you manage and integrate them to deliver improved services based on economies of scope. Each scenario has its benefits and disadvantages. That’s why most providers, certainly the larger and more established providers try to use a blended approach.
Global Delivery Model – onshore, nearshore, farshore
A global delivery model allows a BPO provider to access the best talent at the best price in relation to the tasks and processes that need to be managed. The more complex activities that need greater involvement or collaboration with the client may need to be managed by operations situated locally to the client. Tasks that are fairly straight forward can be offshored or nearshored to a cheaper location.
Nearshore options, though not as cheap as an offshore location, may still be cheaper than local operations where strong cultural alignment is necessary. Travel to a nearshore or regional location may also be easier.
Peter Monk, Country Manager from Concentrix, believes that you need to have local operations if you want to be a provider who wants to deliver true innovation and collaboration. To build the teams that need to work together from the different organisations, they need to be in fairly close proximity to each other.
The deployment of home based agents or homeshoring has become popular over the last decade. It often means reduced costs for the BPO provider as home based workers often provide their own telephone equipment and computer systems. The provider also saves on the associated costs of office space.
Using home based agents that are local to the client and its customer base can overcome the prejudice that is sometimes created from regional accents, mannerisms and rates of speech. Regional government departments and local government may tend to favour providers who employ people in their region.
Home shoring gives people with disabilities, who may not be able to travel to a workplace, the opportunity to work. Research has highlighted that employees with disabilities often have a higher staff retention rate, which saves recruitment and training costs[ii].
By leveraging the right balance of locations, allows providers to build high quality, flexible and innovative solutions for their clients, yet keep costs down.
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