All about IT-enabled Services-I
Information Technology-enabled Services (ITeS) are provided when companies use IT to deliver business processes (for example, customer support) services to customers. In turn, when these companies seek ITeS services, they are opting for Business Process Outsourcing (BPO).
What is a Process?
When a set of activities are executed together to achieve an objective, it is called a process. A good example is the cooking of rice. Typically cooking rice is a seven-step activity
- Clean and wash raw rice
- Add adequate water and rice to a rice/pressure cooker
- Place the cooker on the gas stove, close the lid
- Put the pressure cooker weight on top
- Allow the rice to cook and wait for the steam to whistle
- Shut down the flame
- Let the rice simmer in the cooker for 10 minutes—and the rice is ready to serve.
This seven-step activity is called a process.
What is a Business Process?
Every company has to do many things—called business processes—to serve its customers. These business processes include manufacturing, distribution, marketing, sales, procurement, accounting, HR management, legal and knowledge management, technology management.
Traditionally, every company carried these processes out in-house. Then some companies decided that they could cut costs and improve their efficiency by shutting down, or downsizing the internal teams and ‘outsourcing‘ or asking an external company to take over this process. For example, Coca-Cola has several franchisees that actually buy the Cola concentrate and manufacture and bottle the Coca-Cola that we drink, as per a contract signed with the Coca-Cola Company. This is called outsourcing of the manufacturing/operations process.
What is Business Process Outsourcing(BPO)?
It refers to a business process contracted out to a third-party service provider. According to Wikipedia, ‘BPO is typically categorized into “back-office outsourcing”, which includes internal business functions such as human resources or finance and accounting, and “front-office outsourcing”, which includes customer-related services such as contact centre services. A BPO that is contracted outside a company’s country is called “offshore outsourcing”. A BPO that is contracted to a company’s neighbouring (or nearby) country is called “near-shore outsourcing”. Knowledge Process Outsourcing (KPO) and Legal Process Outsourcing (LPO) are some of the sub-segments of the BPO industry.’In 2010, the Philippines surpassed India as the largest BPO industry in the world.
BPO companies are betting big on sectors like Banking, Financial Services and Accounting, Supply Chain, and Healthcare to drive the next phase of growth which will increase employment opportunities in the sector.
Employment in the BPO Industry
Broadly there are two types of BPOs—Global and Indian—based on the location of the customers they serve. Global BPOs service customers outside India (in the US, UK, and other countries), whereas Indian BPOs serve customers in India. Global BPOs operate during the late evening/night (when it is daytime in the customer country), and require high-quality English-speaking skills. Indian BPOs operate normal working hours and require excellent vernacular language skills (such as in Hindi, Telugu, Tamil).
Entry – Level Jobs in BPO/ITES Sector
There are numerous job roles in the BPO/ITeS Sector but we are covering only a few entry-level roles based on their popularity among graduates.
ITES 1 INBOUND CALL CENTRE EXECUTIVE
When products are shown on television, customers are given numbers to call and place their orders. Let us assume you are shopping from one of these channels and you call up on the numbers flashed on your TV screen. Your call is received by an Inbound Sales Call Centre Executive who takes your order. She/he asks you for your complete address, phone number, and other details, and informs you by when your order will be processed. The Inbound Sales Call Centre Executive then records your information in a computer which shares the order with various other departments to process your order.
- Receiving calls from customers.
- Patiently handling customer enquiries with regard to different products, pricing, offers, and discounts.
- Taking down customer details correctly.
- Meeting sales targets by converting prospective enquiries into sales.
- Providing reports to superiors on calls attended and sales generated.
- Cross-sell other company products.
- Answering quality complaints on the calls that you handle.
- Constantly upgrading one’s telephone etiquette.
ITES 2 OUTBOUND CALL CENTRE EXECUTIVE
Many of us often receive phone calls asking us if we are interested in taking a personal loan, insurance policy, home loan, and so on. Companies hire Tele-representatives to call customers and generate sales/leads. These representatives are called Outbound Sales Representatives. An Outbound Sales Call Centre Executive is someone who makes calls to prospective and existing customers and persuades them to buy more or buy another item.
- Generating a prospective list of customers you need to call. They can be individuals or a business entity.
- Connecting and talking to customers as per the planned script.
- Providing correct information regarding the product or service to customers.
- Responding patiently to customer enquiries.
- Explaining the process of sales (if any) to the customer.
- Taking down customer details correctly.
- Maintaining customer databases.
- Meeting sales targets.
- Providing reports to superiors on calls made and sales generated.
Author: T. Muralidharan
Name of publication: Telangana Today
Date published on: 30/07/2018
published in: Hyderabad