Globally, the business processing outsourcing sector is worth more than $300 billion, rapidly growing due to the rising demand for multichannel communication. BPO companies give you access to the most sophisticated technologies and highly-skilled expertise at a significantly lower cost. Choosing the right firm out of the thousands of available options, however, is a process that could give you a headache. We took care of this for you using our comprehensive evaluation methodology. Scroll down for our list of leading providers, a detailed explanation of the ranking process, and a handy guide for hiring the right BPO partner for your business.
We developed an extensive evaluation methodology to present you with the best companies in the industry. Our criteria include qualitative and quantitative variables that help us recognize the leaders in the world of BPO.
After evaluating hundreds of companies using our custom-developed methodology, we shortlisted the ones that house highly-skilled workforce and state-of-the-art technology. We continued building our supreme BPO companies list with firms that assist businesses in highly-protected environments and employ robust security protocols. We completed the ranking by ensuring that all of the agencies have a good reputation and offer great value for the money.
Scroll down to see how we curated our list of world-class firms.
While many services fall within the BPO domain, we can divide them into two categories, horizontal and vertical. Note that we use this for classification purposes only without considering it into the ranking process. Read on for a more detailed explanation of each category.
Vertical BPO focuses on providing a range of functional services in a limited number of industries. Some examples of vertical BPO industry domains include healthcare, retail, business services, and manufacturing.
Horizontal BPO evolves around function-centered outsourcing. These firms can deliver specific BPO service functions across various industry domains. Payroll processing, facility management, HR, and procurement are some common examples of horizontal BPO.
Each company offers specific expertise. We divide their services into the categories that follow.
Providers can help businesses make the most of their customer connections by offering Customer Interaction Services (CIS). Blending human talent, analytics, and automation technologies, these BPO agencies give clients different channels to effectively engage with their clientele and translate these interactions into revenue.
CIS include call center services, email services, chat, SMS, and appointment scheduling. These offerings can also expand into marketing programs, telemarketing, surveys, order processing, payment processing, customer support, quality assurance, warranty administration, and other services that involve direct engagement with customers.
Back-office services aren’t client-facing, but they do enhance the customer experience. These services take care of the company’s administrative operations. Hiring third-party back-office support, therefore, results in increased scalability and lower costs.
Back-office transactions offered by BPO firms involve data collection and processing, direct and indirect procurement, check, credit, and debit card processing, receivables, logistics and dispatch, transportation administration, and warehouse management.
Many organizations outsource IT and software operations to get access to a large talent pool and advanced technology at a lower cost. IT BPO service providers give businesses a competitive advantage by enhancing the consumer experience, among other things. These companies offer application development, software testing, implementation and support services, IT helpdesk, and other tech-fueled solutions.
BPO organizations offer innovative and effective ways to deal with business finances. Clients can focus on value creation, leaving mundane money matters in the hand of experts who will also ensure regulatory compliance. These companies offer accounting services, auditing, bookkeeping services, billing services, accounts payable, and receivables.
Outsourcing HR services helps businesses address workforce challenges. Modern BPO providers are moving beyond staff performance and productivity optimization services. They also specialize in attracting and retaining new talent capabilities, developing new skills of the existing workforce, straightening employee relationships, and building engaging cultures.
Such outsourceable HR services include payroll services, recruitment, and hiring, employee training, administration of health benefits plans, insurance, and retirement benefits plan administration, and legal expertise.
Business process outsourcing companies can also give businesses access to professionals with advanced degrees and expertise in a specific area, at a lower cost. Organizations avoid the expenses for hiring and developing such individuals while taking full advantage of their specialized knowledge.
These services cover higher-level tasks such as data mining, data analytics and interpretation, technical analysis, data, and knowledge management. Some firms also offer banking and financial services, research and development, medical, and legal expertise.
A BPO business must implement and utilize the latest technologies to be able to solve clients’ operational challenges. We present ourselves as customers to find out whether each firm has state-of-the-art technology in place. Then we ask specific questions to learn more about their designing and implementing capabilities in various IT infrastructure projects.
This step includes ensuring that they have a reliable in-house infrastructure with high-quality hardware and software elements, stable network structures, including phone and internet connections. For vertical providers, we examine whether they offer specialized technologies and solutions for the areas they serve. Today’s competitive economy brings new tech trends daily. That’s why we check whether the firms can integrate technologies promptly, especially when clients incorporate new devices or wish to move to new systems.
We make sure to include only BPO services providers that have a history of executing successful IT projects so clients can adapt to changing business and economic trends on time.
Firms’ security protocols and risk assessment capabilities are also among the factors we examine in detail. Below you can find an in-depth explanation of the areas we research.
Security protects your business, employees, and assets from any damage associated with malware attacks, cyberattacks, data breaches, and other incidents. Since your BPO partner will get access to sensitive business information, we look for BPO companies with cyber security experts that rely on advanced safety procedures to protect their hardware and software components.
We also examine whether the firms operate in highly protected environments and employ reliable security protocols to prevent social engineering. Lastly, we check whether the firms hold internationally-recognized certifications for security, such as ISO 27001 (Information Security Management System) and PCI DSS 3.2.1 (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard).
Considering the rising number of security risks, we look for providers with proactive risk assessment procedures in place. They should combine analytical thinking with proven processes to identify potential threats before they cause damage to clients’ businesses. If such risks lead to data loss and other incidents, business process outsourcing companies should immediately respond with an effective risk management strategy and solve the problem.
We also pay great attention to companies’ reputation since it is one of the most critical factors in our ranking criteria. We start the process by searching for verified reviews from past clients and businesses across various channels. In general, such sources include business directories, social media, and websites.
To curate a reliable business process outsourcing companies list, we examine the agencies’ virtual presence. Then we use the information to determine the quality of service along with the level of customer satisfaction. At this point, we take notice of the companies’ strongest capabilities and consider them in the rankings.
Additionally, we look for past and present clients and further examine the companies’ performance and position compared to the competition. We also check for any repetitive issues associated with the firms and if they have been adequately addressed.
In the last phase of this process, we consider peer recommendations, awards that the BPO centers may have received, and other recognitions that confirm their good reputation. To curate an unbiased list, we compare these acknowledgments against real results achieved by the firms.
Before confiding your business processes to a third party, you need to know how much it will cost you. Nowadays, providers follow different pricing models varying from full-time employee models to transaction-based and outcome-based models. Note that business process outsourcing providers don’t always limit themselves to a specific model, but offer flexible pricing.
We didn’t look for the cheapest providers out there but instead focus on firms that fall within industry standards. Why? You don’t want to share sensitive data and allow an unreliable firm to interact with your customers. Our list features premier companies that will provide the best value for your money.
Having a list of the best firms is a good starting point, but our goal is to assist you from beginning to end. That is why we prepared an actionable guide on how to pick the best firm for your business.
Follow these tips to find your perfect match.
First of all, define which services you want to outsource. Since every firm specializes in different services, look for experts that can enhance your business strengths and ideals. You need a business process outsourcing agency that not only will help you smash operational goals but become your partner in the long run.
You need to form a deep relationship where everyone is on the same page and going after the same goals. This way, the provider can easily tailor their services and solutions to fit your needs, and help you with reliable support when you decide to migrate to different systems, adopt new technologies or expand.
Determine how much money you can set aside or want to spend for BPO services. With a clear budget, you can easily shortlist the companies that fall within your price range and discard the ones that don’t. This should bring you closer to your perfect BPO match.
If you need a call center that will keep you open for business 24/7, check if the BPO businesses you have shortlisted offer around the clock availability. For processes that don’t require 24/7 support, you could easily rely on a firm that offers standard business hours availability.
Another thing to consider is the holidays. Are they willing to adjust to your agenda if you are celebrating different holidays? Even your local agencies might close on public holidays such as Christmas or New Year’s Day. If non-stop support is imperative for your business, you have to look for providers that will keep your processes functional all year long.
Thanks to tools like videoconferencing, email, and instant messaging, you don’t have to limit your choices to local BPO providers. Location-wise, you have three BPO options:
If lower cost is your main concern, going offshore might be your best bet. However, keep in mind that this might mean language and cultural barriers. To avoid those, you can opt for near-shore or onshore business process outsourcing firms. Note that these providers are likely to charge higher rates. On the flip side, they would offer highly-skilled professionals that understand your market, speak your language, and share the same culture. Plus, you can personally visit their offices and meet the people before hiring.
Depending on the services, the firm will either interact with your customers or handle operations that involve sensitive data. In both cases, finding a cultural fit is essential for seamless collaboration.
If you are going for someone local, it’s worth visiting their offices and meeting the people who will work as an extension of your in-house team. If you are considering offshore BPO companies, talk to as many people as possible to determine whether the firms are a cultural fit. You want to hire a company that promotes engaging communication, seamless cooperation, and employee satisfaction.