The Rising Trend in BPO: Outsourcing for Social Good - TELUS International Europe

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  • The Rising Trend in BPO: Outsourcing for Social Good

    January 21 2014

    This article is based on the research paper: Outsourcing for Social Good: A BPO Perspective conducted by TELUS International and Impakt Corporation.

    The rising trend in BPOWhen it comes to corporate social responsibility (CSR), is there a new imperative for BPOs?

    Now BPO providers have to go beyond client’s expectations in order to stay competitive. What is more important success in the industry can no longer be measured strictly by costs per call or number of seats in a call center. Limitations of the original BPO business model have led to high attrition rates among call center agents.

    CSR programs are now viewed as a growing trend in BPO sector and a differentiator providing competitive advantage in the outsourcing market as well as a great means of attracting and retaining top talent.

    The Rising Trend in BPO: Outsourcing for Social Good

    The DNA of the emerging model for the BPO industry is based on the value of a caring culture. When a company thoughtfully analyzes the social issues its employees and communities are facing, and then develops effective strategies to address these problems, the company, its employees and communities all benefit. And when people feel valued and cared for, they become more loyal and enthusiastic about the organization they are working for.

    A key imperative for the BPO industry stems from a persistent inability for governments and non-governmental organizations to address basic social issues in developing countries, such as housing, access to clean water and education.

    Progressive BPOs are increasingly mobilizing employees to volunteer in their communities by supporting basic needs like building roads and schools, as well as volunteering for local grassroots charitable organizations. In addition to building concrete value in the community, these efforts engage employees in work they find meaningful, and corporate volunteer activities demonstrate to employees that the company cares.

    The New Trend in BPO Put into Practice

    Our colleagues from TELUS International, a global provider of contact center outsourcing solutions, were interested in producing a balanced and objective analysis of the reasons why corporate social responsibility (CSR) is becoming so important to the BPO industry. The research, done in cooperation with Impakt Corporation, a leading global CSR consultancy, revealed that BPOs have become connected to and rooted in their communities in a way that is inextricably linked to the success of their businesses.

    TELUS International has instituted its Day of Giving in several countries, including Central America, Eastern Europe and the Philippines. In the latest Day of Giving in the Philippines, TELUS International mobilized 2,000 of its international team members to refurbish the EMS Signal Village Elementary School in Taguig (a single school attended by 9,000 children). The business results and social outcomes include direct contribution in solving social issues, reduced agent attrition, better customer satisfaction, and improved public opinion.

    Does it pay off?

    It’s an investment that pays off. According to the research done by TELUS International when a business helps improve the lives of its workers and their communities, it enables the business to improve its value for customers far beyond cost savings.

    Increasingly, clients are evaluating prospective BPO suppliers based on more than the conventional value proposition. They have come to recognize that CSR is a vital way to assess the values of a company. Investing in people and communities actually improves the quality of the firm’s products and the effectiveness of its services as their employees reward their employers with a higher degree of loyalty, engagement and productivity.

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