The BPO industry faces another challenge in the midst of its already ample supply of trials. As the call center industry is rapidly gaining momentum, so are its share of problems. These are the challenges that can test the resolve of entrepreneurs and the management alike.
Skill shortage is a concern that has always tormented the BPO outsourcing industry in mild doses. But due to the rapid evolution and diversification of the industry, in what otherwise perceived as a moderate problem has also compounded drastically. The current workforce of the industry is lagging behind in addressing the ever-growing demands.
Due to the inherent multi-disciplinary nature of the business, the call centers and the contact centers are the most vulnerable to this particular threat. Companies and businesses delivering inbound and outbound call center services are experiencing difficulty in acquiring recruits, specializing in fields such as Public relation, sales, IT, and finance and accounting etc. Furthermore, the Omni-presence of a high attrition rate across the whole industry is not helping either.
The following is a list of pointers that might prove to be beneficial in countering the challenge of skill shortage in the Business process outsourcing industry.
Hire the high standards
While recruiting, scan for the best of the lot. It is always better to hire an expert rather than an amateur. Hiring the best might increase the initial cost but it eventually pays off later. An expert brings in his skills and it can save a lot of costs and can guarantee a higher degree of profit for the company. Also, it saves the company the trouble of potentially laying off somebody in future for incompetency.
Employ a rewarding referral system
Complement the HR department’s work with the addition of a proper employee referral system. The program should be a platform for present employees to refer peers, friends, and relatives for vacant positions in the organizations. Incentivize those referrals that end up as successful hires for the company. Such an initiative allows the business to take advantage of the wide network of its employees.
Upgrade the training program
Mere hiring is not going to ensure the optimum productivity of the agents. It is important to understand whether the current training program is on par with the BPO outsourcing industry standards or not. Take a closer introspection into the training program and see how one can modify and sharp around the edges for the betterment of the new recruits.
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Ability over experience
Most job recruiters look for experience to sort out their list of prospective candidates where the years of experience is emphasized over talent. Such qualification criteria can make the enterprise miss out on less experienced but highly talented and competent applicants.
Take a closer look at the additional programs of a candidate that are not linked to the degree program such as internships. Take a detailed look at the candidate’s previous projects.
Improve employee retention rate
Though it is important to address new demands, so is prioritizing on the available workforce. Devising effective employee engagement plans is the key to a lower employee retention rate. It directly influences the volume of the recruitment process. More employees leaving means more pressure on the HR to fill the vacancies.
Be sure to recognize the positive points of the employees and share them with the other team members as it will bolster their confidence.
Proper branding of the organization is also necessary to attract talented and able prospective recruits. A brand should be able to communicate the company’s mission and vision clearly to the prospects. If these aspects are clearly reflected in the job ads and the marketing materials, then the chances to attract candidates of similar values and qualities also increase manifold.
Focus on business agility
Many in the BPO outsourcing industry is infusing the core concepts of business agility into their HR undertakings. Business agility is a set of distinct qualities of an organization that allows it to respond quickly and effectively to the changing needs without losing momentum and sight of the goals. It focusses on HR and educational programs that empower managers and their team to arrive at a decision quickly and effectively. Agile enterprises have a fluid role definition and are competitively advantageous than the traditional ones.
Outsourcing companies can have their own model. For instance, if the strength of the organization’s HR department is in recruitment and lacks the same in training then one can outsource the training program to another company that has the necessary expertise. Outsourcing allows a company to focus on its strengths rather than battling its weaknesses.