BUSINESS PROCESS OUTSOURCING
ILLUSTRATION PROVIDED BY ADOBE IMAGES
IT ’ S TIME TO LEVEL UP WITH OUTSOURCING HOW SMBS CAN COMPETE ON CUSTOMER SERVICE , SUPPORT WITH ENTERPRISES . BY ALAN PENDLETON , ARENACX
It was September of 2020 . I was about to launch a business . As a corporate spinout , we had some advantages : a battled-tested product , our first customer , a mature team , and we had raised venture capital .
But even with this head start , a sage advisor wearing a medium-length gray beard warned me that “ Running a startup is like plowing a field with your face .”
Over two years later he seems wiser than ever .
36 CONTACT CENTER PIPELINE
If you ’ re running a small-midsized business ( SMB ), or managing one of its departments , you know what I mean . One new client can triple your revenue . One painful churn can cost you the company .
In an SMB , all the amps go up to 15 . Few things can prepare you for the extremes of life in an SMB . Because of this , we ’ re always looking for ways to moderate those extremes , mature our companies , and become more resilient .
But many of the solutions available to larger enterprises require deep pockets . Amazon can install robots to make their warehouses more efficient . SpaceX can develop bleeding-edge artificial intelligence ( AI ) to land and reuse rockets .
Best Buy can hire McKinsey consultants to improve its processes . As mere mortals , we don ’ t have those resources .
THE RISE OF AND CASE FOR BPOS
But one strategy is now within reach : outsourcing . Pioneered in the 1960s and 1970s by manufacturing companies such as General Electric , with a second wave in the 1990s spurred on by IT giants such as IBM and Dell , the advent of outsourcing created companies now called business process outsourcers ( BPOs ).
The BPO industry soon began to encompass contact center-provided cus- tomer service , support , and sales , enabling companies to ramp up programs