In the beginning of this year HfS described scaling up of staff resources as the biggest opportunity for service providers. The reason behind it, they say, is increased complexity of the business landscape which creates opportunities for service growth.
And they are right, no question about it.
We are living in the period of the biggest technological change after the industrialization era. Traditional roles are ceasing or transforming, while new ones are emerging on the horizon. Outsourcing has increasingly become more about improved processes and efficiency, rather than cost cutting, although still a major driver. This has changed roles and responsibilities of employees and managers.
Skills in demand in the outsourcing industry
While the opportunity is alluring, not many manage to answer the demand. Outsourcing companies feel puzzled which skills should they develop within their employees or look for when hiring. Not only that new skills are required, but there is a demand for new combination of skills. An outsourcing company cannot allow itself to hire people that are only good in their niche. They are not searching only for creative designers or accountants who are good with numbers, but for people who are well organised with good time management to successfully multitask across multiple disciplines and have good communication skills. Multilingual competence is always an extra point when recruiting especially for companies operating across wider geographical areas. Finally you need great team players who will support each other for maximizing client’s value.
New BPO roles and responsibilities
The people managing the outsourcing process are under greater pressure for constant self-development. In addition to extensive project management skills and expertise in the process being outsourced, account managers need to have:
good understanding of new robotics platforms and digital solutions;
negotiation and contractual skills;
have the ability to establish performance measures;
ability to redesign processes;
The HfS have referred to them as Capability Brokers who can work with multiple delivery vehicles or partners, can also multitask across multiple disciplines and be good at solving business problems, and detecting them along the way.
Many will find this challenging, and only few will succeed. But those few will benefit greatly. This is a huge opportunity for ambitious and capable people working in this industry, creating a new career path that requires resourcefulness, creativity, and ability to think out-of-the box. New roles will need smart people eager to constantly develop themselves, handle ambiguity and evolve at the pace of the technological change.