Archive for December, 2010

Education: Challenge of the BPO Industry 2011

Sunday, December 19th, 2010

It was an early Christmas present for call centers in the Philippines to have recognized as the world leader in the business process outsourcing (BPO) industry.

This title of being a BPO top leader has been a battle for many years and now that the Philippines won it, the new challenge is how to stay on top.  To maintain the recently-attained global leadership, the country must sharpen its strengths and eliminate its weaknesses. According to the report, the two largest challenges that the industry faces ahead are: maintaining the talent pool supply; and increasing the visibility of the country as an outsourcing leader. It was also noted that as early as a year from now, there is a very high demand of talent but not enough supply of qualified workers. The Philippines graduates nearly half-a-million students from college yearly, but because of non-relevant background and training, less than 10 percent of them have the necessary skills to join the BPO industry. With this, education is still the issue that the government must focus on. The major concern is that if these types of jobs in the country are not filled by well trained and educated personnel, the country would lose its momentum in achieving a knowledge-based sector of the economy, creating a void in domestic growth. The Philippines educational system has to adjust to modern technology and the challenges of the new century. It has always been said that the youth is the hope of the country. Now is the time to act and to give this youth the tools they need to be able to maintain a high level of competitiveness in the global arena, by providing them quality education.


Call Center: A Christmas Vacation at the Beach

Friday, December 17th, 2010

Christmas is the time to get out of that ordinary everyday life and spend quiet moments with family and show them how much they mean to you. It is the perfect occasion to get closer to them and let them have their share of your time. There’s nothing to worry about planning such wonderful trip because the Philippines call center is there to help you set your holiday vacation. Inbound call center agents can help you plan on where to go and what to do this Christmas.

For Christmas getaways, beach resort is one of the ideal places to spend vacation with your family. It is a perfect place to relax and rejuvenate. You can take boat trip with your kids, play and make sandcastles or enjoy water sports activities with them. For mom and dad, a spa treatment will be nice to ease the stress away caused by work. The best thing to do at the beach is to watch the sunset while sipping your favorite cocktail and after that, a wonderful dinner by the beach. In the morning, for a little exercise or a change of scenery, walk at the beach and feel the sand beneath your feet as the water splashes at your ankles.

There are so many things to do to have a wonderful vacation; the key here is to give yourself a break and to spend maximum time with your family. A family Christmas is the best kind of Christmas and once you have had a good one, you will make it a point to enjoy every future Christmas with your family.


Philippines Telemarketing: Tips on Reducing Holiday Stress

Thursday, December 16th, 2010

As a Philippines telemarketing agent, I must say that Christmas is the best holiday of the year but it is also one of the most stressful events of the year as well. The expense of buying gifts, the pressure of last minute shopping, the crowded shopping malls and the busy streets can all combine to challenge our best intentions. Some practical suggestions can help you reduce your Christmas stress.

Set your Christmas budget. For many of us, the Christmas aftermath includes massive credit card bills that can take months to clear. Christmas doesn’t have to be a financial headache if you plan ahead. Time runs so fast so you never notice, Christmas is here again so as early as you can in the New Year, work out a rough budget of expected Christmas costs.

Reduce gifts expense. If you have a large circle of extended family or friends to buy gifts for, it can be very costly. Buy presents only for the children or have a Kris Kringle, where everyone draws a name out of a hat and buys a present only for that person.

Plan before you shop. Make a list of all the gifts you wish to buy before you go shopping. If you wait for inspiration to strike, you could be wandering aimlessly around the shopping centre for hours. If possible, do your Christmas shopping early – in the first week of December or even in November. Some well-organized people do their Christmas shopping gradually over the course of the year, starting with the post-Christmas sales.


Call Center’s Christmas Party

Tuesday, December 14th, 2010

The company Christmas party is a beloved tradition in many businesses just like in Philippines call center. There’s so much to celebrate especially now that the Philippines was cited as the call center capital of the world, overtaking India as the number one player in the global business process outsourcing market.

It is a fact that Filipino just love to celebrate Christmas party in a company that they work for. This kind of event in a business is very important regardless that it happens only once a year. Call center agents from all levels of the BPO company come together for the big Christmas party. This gives everyone a rare chance to mingle across department lines and job descriptions. Attendees can take advantage of this chance to network, make helpful connections, and get their name known. It also promotes camaraderie since it allows employees to get to know each other outside of the business setting. This is also a great opportunity for the company to say “thank you” for the past year’s work. Rewarding employees or raffle draws is a perfect way to spice up this party. Gift exchanging is always a part of Christmas party which makes everyone so confused on what to give and at the same time, excited on what they will receive. Another way to celebrate this is by inviting some company clients to show appreciation of their business. It may not be the place for business deals, but a few minutes of conversation in a casual setting can lead to more contracts in the coming year.

Christmas has always been so fun and it is most people’s favorite holiday of the year.


The Evolution of BPO: Non-Voice Service Provider

Sunday, December 12th, 2010

The Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) is growing rapidly. Technological and communication advances help realize the wide-spread implementation of BPO, due to their quality and cost improvements.  BPO started with non-core processes and is now moving towards more critical applications. It has boomed with call centers and customer support processes, and now is happening with software development, Human Resources (HR), Finance and Accounting (F&A), training, payroll, and procurement. The trend is moving beyond the outsourcing of typical back-office functions into middle-office functions.

The evolution of BPO services is very evident here in the Philippines with the growth of companies that offer non-voice programs. While the Philippines has been recognized primarily as a key destination for voice-based BPO services, rapidly emerging capabilities in non-voice processes are making it a potential location for non-voice BPO as well. Relatively high competence and maturity in finance and accounting and transcription services are currently being provided by the Philippines BPO industry. Now, you will notice that there are a lot of job opportunities for non-voice services everywhere across the country given that the Philippines has a large pool of quality graduates such as accounting and education. Another advantage of the Filipino workers in this kind of opportunity is their deep affinity in Western culture wherein they are highly trainable and can adapt with fast learning curves. The surfacing of the non-voice market proves that the skilled Filipino workers can compete with their counterparts in India and other offshore destinations in providing other kinds of BPO services.


Cebu City: Top 9 in Emerged BPO Destination

Friday, December 10th, 2010

Over the past two years, Cebu has been the no.1 emerging BPO destinations in the world, but now it is in the ninth spot in the list of top 10 Emerged Destinations for BPO.  The ranking was made by Tholons, an international outsourcing and investment advisory firm, and will be reflected in its 2010 annual survey. This has been great news for everyone, most especially Cebu’s local government unit and business sectors who have been working persistently within the last few years to move the city with towards the level of the world’s primary Business Process Outsourcing destinations – Bangalore, New Delhi, Mumbai (all of India) and Manila. It isn’t easy to qualify as an “emerged” BPO destination, a city has to pass six assessment criteria, which included talent, business environment, cost, infrastructure quality and risks. Without any doubt, Cebu has proved that it’s highly qualified to be a comprehensive competitor in hosting BPO investment and is also proud of its rich human resource of BPO professionals. In fact, Cebu’s government has been very supportive in providing talented workforce by putting up training programs and including plans for a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) program geared for BPO and IT workers.

This is only a proof that not just Cebu but the Philippines, in general has a highly educated, productive and dedicated workforce with excellent work ethics and attention to detail. Filipinos’ strong customer service orientation and high level of commitment and loyalty are its’ inherent strengths that made the Philippines established itself as the preferred choice for BPO industry.


Call Center Agent: Being Powerful in Saving the Earth

Thursday, December 9th, 2010

Are you familiar with these names – Barack Obama, Bill Gates, Hu Jintao, Vladimir Putin, Pope Benedict XVI, Larry Page, Mark Zuckerberg and Oprah Winfrey? I must say that these are just some of the most powerful people in the world. These are the persons who have influenced the human race. Among the 6.8 billion people here on planet earth, have you imagined what you can do to be recognized by these billions of people? Definitely yes, each and every one of us can do a lot and influence others; one way is to save our mother earth.

Earth is a very important part of everyone’s lives and since we live here, we should all be responsible individuals. You may not be able to reduce global warming, end pollution and save endangered species single-handed but by choosing to live an earth-friendly lifestyle, you can help protect our environment even in simple ways. Some ways are unplug appliances if not in need or use compact fluorescent light bulbs to conserve energy; try to walk for short trips or take public transportation for longer ones to reduce air pollution; use reusable bags when shopping instead of plastic bags especially now that its Christmas season. For businesses like call centre, automotive companies, cellphone companies, airlines, etc., make sure to be a green company by reducing paper usage in the office, using energy efficient computers and most of all, encouraging the employees to do such practices.

Let’s stop saying “what can I do, I’m only one person”, instead “I’m only one person but I can be a powerful one to save the earth”.


2011 Customer Service Trends

Tuesday, December 7th, 2010

In the face of a recession and a very tight global competition, every company must still realize that the only way to survive and to increase market share is to keep customers satisfied. In 2011, it‘ll be another challenge for some business to adapt to higher customer demands. Based on a recent customer service survey by Frost & Sullivan, here are the top call center trends.

Customer satisfaction, a top priority: Half of respondents were classified as “customer-oriented”. A further 35% were classified as searching for the “latest and greatest” applications. “Cost-focused” represented the remaining 15% of respondents.

Rapid growth of social media customer interactions: 30 percent indicated they support social media customer interactions on social media sites such as facebook, twitter, etc. and 29 percent extract intelligence from this activity. Of social media benefits, the top three cited were to “provide better customer service,” (75 percent), “drive sales,” (58 percent), and “drive customer loyalty” (54 percent).

Growth of web collaboration, text and video: With supported inbound interaction channels, growth from 2009 to 2010 was highest for text/SMS (25 percent increase), video (15 percent increase), and Web-based interactions (8 percent increase).

Consistent customer experience: The largest majority of respondents – 67 percent – rated ensuring consistent service across channels as a “very high priority” or “high priority.”

Significant increase in proactive customer contact activity: Of three types of outbound service programs, the majority — 65 percent — indicated they would increase their “proactive, value-add customer contact” programs over the next two years; 43 percent said they would increase their “sales and marketing” programs, and 42 percent said they would increase their “collections” programs.


Philippines Telemarketing: Christmas Season

Monday, December 6th, 2010

On Christmas Eve here in the Philippines, it is a night without sleep and a continuous celebration moving right into Christmas Day. The Noche Buena is very much like an open house celebration. Family, friends, relatives, and neighbors drop by to wish every family member “Maligayang Pasko” or Merry Christmas. Food is in abundance, often served in buffet style. There are also plenty of beer, wine, and liquor, which make the celebration of Christmas indeed intoxicating. In other words, Christmas Eve is a very special occasion for Filipinos to spend time with families and friends.

But for those who are obliged to work during this day, it isn’t really a big deal at all. For companies that operate 24/7 like hotels, airlines, cruise ships, restaurants, hospitals and Philippines call center, I’m sure that its usual to their employees to work during Christmas Eve. Regardless of the fact that employees receive extra compensation on that day, it is also one of the greatest opportunities for some companies to earn more income. This is the time wherein most hotels are fully booked; airlines are fully booked as well because of holiday trips and restaurants are busy catering to dinner reservations. For Philippines telemarketing, it is the best time to launch new products and services, to market such products and to perform outbound campaigns.

Christmas season is also a time to earn more income but no matter how hectic this holiday is, for everyone, this is the day that should be remembered and cherished.


Inbound Agent Shares Tips on How to Save Money on Christmas

Sunday, December 5th, 2010

Christmas is a big holiday in the Philippines. It’s so huge that almost every Filipino really go out of their way and take time to prepare for this annual occasion. Gift giving has been part of our tradition but with our economy nowadays, it’s advisable to be practical and not to spend so much on gifts.

As an inbound call center agent, I admit that I receive more compensations than any other jobs. But still, I keep in mind that I don’t need to spend a lot on gifts. Here are some practical ways to save money.

Make a list. Shopping on the fly is a sure way to go over budget. Make a list of what you plan to buy for everyone before you hit the stores. Also jot down an estimate of how much you expect to spend on each gift.

Scale back. If your Christmas list grown to an unreasonable length, it’s time to start pruning. If you have a large extended family, consider buying a single gift for everyone in the family or only buying for the kids.

Shop early. When it comes to Christmas shopping, more time means more options. Make your shopping list out several months before Christmas and use the time cushion to comparison shop and watch for sales.

Set your own expectations. Stop doing what others want and start doing what you want. It’s okay to decide that you can’t afford to do for everyone. Put yourself first and you’ll be doing your finances a big favor.

Saving money at Christmas is worth doing. Set a budget for your family and enjoy a holiday season that’s free of financial worry.