The Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) industry was born out of a desire to cut operating costs. However, the industry is changing considerably. Today, progressive BPOs are focused on creating an exceptional customer experience while delivering top-line value to their clients in a way that also addresses social inequities in the countries where they operate.
At the same time, clients are evaluating BPO suppliers on more than the conventional value proposition. Clients have come to recognize that Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is a vital way to assess the values of a company.
The need for social change is as urgent today as at any time in history. About 1 billion people around the globe will go to bed hungry tonight, 200 million of them children. But how can we align short-term business goals with long-term social objectives? What is the business value of social change and the social value of business performance?
Progressive companies are already making social change a core pillar of their business. This includes BPOs that have now become deeply connected to and rooted in their communities in a way that is inextricably linked to the success of their businesses.
Success in our industry can no longer be measured strictly by costs per call or number of seats in a call center. The original BPO business model has led to high attrition rates among call center agents which can translate into a gradual diminishing of customer satisfaction as brand continuity is minimized and agent dissatisfaction interferes with the customer relationship.
The DNA of the emerging model for the BPO industry is based on the value of a caring culture. By responsibly and ethically employing hundreds of thousands of people, BPOs have a role to play in shifting the social landscape in emerging economies around the world.
Helping communities address basics like education and clean water, enhances a company’s reputation. It becomes a sought-after place to work, making recruitment that much easier. Retention increases substantially. Agents are engaged as they feel they are making a real contribution to their families and communities through their employer.
In creating thousands of well-paid jobs, the stability of the community is improved. People no longer have to leave their home country and family behind to earn a living. Instead they can build a more prosperous life and community right where they live. The middle class expands. All of these factors have the potential and ability to transform society in a profound way.