When choosing to outsource, picking the right BPO partner is of utmost importance. Outsourcing non-core in-house functions can be a great strategy to help your firm reduce overhead costs, reduce time spent on training, offer more services and products and scale up quickly.
But choosing the wrong partner can make your venture into the outsourcing world more troublesome and time-consuming than keeping work in-house. That’s why it’s extremely important to make sure your partner is a trusted and experienced firm with a track record of success in the sector. In this blog post we outline how to pick the right BPO partner and enjoy the full advantages of outsourcing.
1. Familiarize Yourself with Management
In your journey into the outsourcing world you will need to interact regularly with the executive and management branches of your BPO firm. Make sure you are interacting with trustworthy executives and managers with a track record of accomplishment in the field. They will be the ones overseeing the projects and engagements you choose to outsource, so choosing excellent management is key.
2. Track Record and Experience
Next, ask for references to ascertain the firm’s track record and experience. Have they been in the outsourcing field for a significant amount of time? How many clients do they currently have, and are any of them similar to your firm? How do they ensure the success of each client? Ask performance-based questions that will help you ascertain their effectiveness in delivering what you need.
3. Ascertain Communication Effectiveness
Communication is key when it comes to outsourcing business projects. Communication and transparency help ensure that projects are set to be executed on time and that deliverables meet the quality your firm is demanding. Also consider language – if you need an English, Italian, German or French-speaking partner, consider a BPO vendor in Albania where these languages are commonly spoken by the majority of people.
4. Geography and Time Zone Differences
Only consider providers in economically sound and politically stable countries so that macroeconomic and political trends don’t interrupt your business dealings. Also take into account the time difference between your home office and the outsourcing partner – will you need to communicate with them in real-time? Or will they be providing 24/7 customer service in shifts? Since time zones can create difficulty in terms of scheduling and communication, make sure that the geographical differences make sense for your business.
5. Availability of Talent & Resources
Seek talent where it can be found – different countries boast different levels of general technical and soft-skill infrastructure. Your provider will need access to a wide pool of talent that can help your project scale up easily, so make sure they are located in a city and country with excellent educational infrastructure. Also make sure to ask about staff retention rates, as low rates will make your engagement costlier and less productive.
6. Costs, Fees and Rates
There ain’t no such thing as a free lunch! In the BPO world, the lower the hourly rate quoted the more likely your work is to be lower-quality. Just because a provider is offering affordable rates does not mean that they will meet your expectations and provide the quality of work you need. Make sure you ask a lot of questions about what’s included and mention every relevant detail in the SLA you sign.
7. Protection of Intellectual Property & Confidentiality
Make sure the systems and requirements you have in place protect your intellectual property and that the outsourcing provider likewise has protocols that ensure confidentiality and protection. Otherwise, a cost-saving engagement can turn into an expensive legal battle over your firm’s valuable IP and trade secrets.
8. Culture, Values and Norms
Make sure to choose an outsourcing partner who shares your values, goals and general philosophy. Compatible values and work norms will set your firm on the path to success as it works in tandem with your BPO provider. If your in-house and offshored teams do not mesh well due to cultural differences that can bear out in terms of communication, work quality and style, your entire organization will suffer.
9. Infrastructure & Technology
To get the most out of your outsourcing setup, make sure you have technology and infrastructure in place to facilitate sharing of documents, communication across teams and access to sundry databases. A top-notch outsourcer will provide you with a safe and effective transition of your in-house functions to their offshore team. They will work with you to make sure that systems are in place to manage all technical aspects of the collaboration including file sharing, data storage, operational optimization and cybersecurity.
10. Physical Facilities
Some firms prefer to visit their partner’s physical facilities before signing on the dotted line. This can be a great way to familiarize yourself with your BPO partner and build rapport, giving you insight into their operations, work style and the quality of their talent.
The Benefits of Outsourcing
It can all seem intimidating at first, but outsourcing offers business myriad benefits:
- Scaling up staffing without the stress and hassle of screening, interviewing and hiring
- Enjoying the benefits of a multilingual, omnichannel team ready to service clients anywhere and anytime on the planet
- Cutting on costs while accessing a large labor pool of talented and skilled staff
- Flexibly scale and cut down on staffing as your needs wax and wane
Find out more – Sara Call Center is here to help!
Sara Call Center has been helping international firms since our founding in 2012 to set up outsourcing teams and access highly talented staff in Albania. From helping you find the right solutions, hire the right personnel and set up the optimal campaigns, we are available to help take your business to the next level – get in touch, today!