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Top Recruitment Process Outsourcing Trends

by: Sarah Joson

Monday, April 14, 2014 | Comments (0)

Category: Outsourcing Research / Trends

Recruitment process outsourcing (RPO) has become one of the more active business tools being widely adopted. It was found that the key drivers of this model are: the strategy to expand operations, a growing number of decision makers are now accepting the model more, its flexibility, and to streamline operations.

A post at info.ISG-One.com shares the popular trends as stated by over a dozen RPO providers:

1) RPO providers are working hard to attract more talent.
Several strategies are now being implemented by RPOs that joined ISGís forum. Some of them said they are now focusing on solutions on employment branding and employee value proposition. Others make use of their companyís popularity in terms of brand and culture in hopes of attracting talents that will fit a client-driven environment.   

2. Globalization strategies are applied to enable growth.
RPO providers are also considering expanding operations by means of tapping new locations. This will enable them to reinforce geographic reach, presence, as well as capability. Others were seen applying globalization through the use of the internet. With that, globalization will be a strong focal point for 2014 and is a strategy that RPOs will strongly invest time and money on.

3. More recruitment outsourcing providers will be focusing on niche markets.
RPO providers are expected to be more industry-centric coming from a multi-industry model. This is to address the challenges of recruiting professional-level positions that are commonly hard to fill. Itís always a way for providers to showcase their success and potential in specific segments.

4. Process innovation.
Technology will also play a huge role amongst RPOs this year. Process automation and sourcing platforms such as social media, text campaigns, mobile applications, online processing, and interviews will be utilized to improve talent acquisition. Data collection will also be transformed by various technologies, making it easier for providers to collect and process information and align business results with goals.

5. Adoption of a multi-provider recruitment outsourcing setup.

Partnerships will be forged as blended RPO gains more traction. This is expected to help organizations to reinforce their talent pool and maximize the cost reduction capabilities of outsourcing. It also diversifies the strength of an enterprise while helping them maintain order in the process.

Accenture Veers Away from the Term ďOutsourcingĒ

by: Sarah Joson

Friday, April 11, 2014 | Comments (0)

Category: Outsourcing News, Outsourcing Research / Trends

A post at EnterpriseIrregulars.com sheds light into the game-changing move of global IT and consultancy leader Accenture. It was recently reported that the company has shun away from the term "outsourcing", and is now using a new strategy line "Strategy, Digital, Technology, Operations", instead of their decade-old line "Consulting, Technology, Outsourcing".

The decision to drop the term "outsourcing" is in line with the firm wanting to put emphasis on their services that go beyond business process outsourcing (BPO).

Through the eyes of the public, outsourcing is still an ambiguous subject that has created an unstable environment for consultants, providers, and global clients. Since outsourcing is still somehow associated to negative practices, teaching and instilling facts such as the many ways it can help improve and extend operational capability and productivity have become an endless battle.

Accenture, a key player in the outsourcing industry, is the last of the pioneers that worked with and used the term outsourcing. Now that it is starting to veer away from the brand/term, what is going to happen to the rest of the sector?

Renowned providers were seen replacing the term "outsourcing" with: "operations" for Accenture, "business process services" for Cognizant, while Dell, Capgemini, Infosys, Sutherland Global, and Wipro call it "BPO". Genpact uses "business process management", ADP uses "human resources BPO", EXL uses "business process solutions", while WNS refers to it as "business process management".

 All in all, what matters is how potential clients understand the delivery model and the benefits it brings to an enterprise. Accentureís move of changing outsourcing maybe significant for rebranding and realigning strategy, but it will still depend on how it will be perceived by consumers.

Social Listening: The Top Marketing Technique in 2014

by: Fin Panlilio

Thursday, April 10, 2014 | Comments (0)

Category: Outsourcing Research / Trends

Things have definitely changed for social media - from being ignored by top marketers to now being the main channel for communicating with customers.

As customers now expect to connect and converse with brands whenever they want, it is the latterís responsibility to listen and respond in real time.

Here are three tips to help marketers take full advantage of their social media channels for listening.

1. Keep your ear to the ground.
Social listening helps marketers engage with customers by watching various social media networks for mentions of their brand. With social media, there is a unique opportunity for brands to connect with customers one-on-one. Utilize social listening by joining conversations relating to your brand and your industry.

2. Engage and respond in real time.
Real-time analytics makes it easy for brands to listen to their customers and respond to them in real time. According to a recent survey, 49% of Twitter users were likely to recommend a brand via social media if that brand engaged with them in a timely manner.

3. Automate listening to identify influencers.
Marketing automation helps organize social media management so that you can be a more effective listener. Use an automation tool to identify your brandís major influencers - from journalists and bloggers to celebrities - and then engage those influencers. Building a mutually beneficial relationship with your influencers strengthens the brand.

The top marketing technique this year revolves around being a better listener. In an age of personalization and real-time marketing, itís time to grab the opportunity to connect with your customers in a truly personal way. That is golden marketing you just canít buy.

Using Social Media to Get Heard by Your Future Customers

by: Fin Panlilio

Tuesday, April 08, 2014 | Comments (0)

Category: Outsourcing Research / Trends

Getting your small business to take off can be difficult as it is to get heard in the massive noise that is the overcrowded internet. Millions of businesses and websites are out there competing for a slice of the cake, so how can a start-up get heard by the people who matter?

No matter how small or new your business might be, having an online presence is necessary in this day and age. Social media has made it easier for small businesses to compete with the big guys. If there is one thing the entire advertising budget in the world canít repress, itís genuine customer feedback. Thanks to the ubiquity of smartphones and social media, every consumer-facing business is just a couple of clicks away from receiving a rave review or an ill-tempered rant on a social sharing site.

Donít look so glum. Your customers can actually do the work for you and spread good news about your brand or business! How? By offering them incentives. Small rewards, such as a free drink with a meal or a discount voucher every time they "check-in" to your business online or tweet using your chosen hashtag, always do the trick.

Something as simple as an email, a Facebook post, or a tweet prompting your customers to write a review for future customers could be all that is needed. It all sounds so easy, but of course, you need to make sure your product or service is of good and decent quality to ensure positive feedback - the one golden rule of business that hasn't changed and wonít be changing anytime soon. Remember that a business relationship is no different from any other relationship; you canít afford to take your customers for granted.

Social media can be beneficial to your business, but you have to be aware that it also carries risk. Having an online presence means that customers can engage with your business like never before, and that entails both good and bad feedback.
Feedback you receive from a social media outlet is there for all to see, so itís important to be quick and sympathetic with your responses. Let your customers know you are listening to their concerns by acknowledging them and addressing the problem in a meaningful way. It could be in some form of compensation or a simple apology and explanation.

Social media is a wonderful tool to building a successful business. It just needs to be carefully monitored to make sure your business can turn even the worst feedback to your advantage.

How to Incorporate Photography into Your Social PR Strategy

by: Fin Panlilio

Monday, March 31, 2014 | Comments (0)

Category: Outsourcing Research / Trends

Recent news has us updated on Instagramís announcement that they now have 200 million users, with a total of 20 billion photos shared, and 60 million photos shared daily. Itís easy to understand why Instagram has quickly gone from a trendy app to a household name: pictures are easily shareable and surpass language and cultural barriers.

As a marketer, you have to monitor all social media channels, know the trends, and find out how you can get the most out of them. People connect with pictures on an emotional level, so itís essential that your company incorporates photos into your social PR strategies. It will help your company resonate with your audience as well as optimize engagement.

Here are three ways in which you can integrate pictures into your social PR strategy:

1. Lay your cards on the table.
Save your customers the hassle of having to click another link just so they can enjoy the content you post. Show it to them within your profileís wall or stream. Twitter Cards are also available for enhancement of Twitter posts with embedded photos or other media.

2. Let your personality shine.
People like to be in the know. Offer day-to-day realities of how your company does business. Instagram would be a great outlet to show behind-the-scenes activities in your company.

3. Enhance the story.
Increase production of new content such as blog posts, eBooks, and press releases with related photography posted on your companyís social media accounts. For linking photos back to the main content on your site, Pinterest would be a good choice as it is the number one social media source of website referral traffic and revenue, according to a report by The Container Store.

The popularity of social media sites such as Instagram, Pinterest, and Tumblr shows that photography is a great way to catch the attention of your target audience. So pull out that camera phone, start snapping, and profit from it!

How Payroll Outsourcing can Help Your Business

by: Sarah Joson

Friday, March 28, 2014 | Comments (0)

Category: Outsourcing Research / Trends

Outsourcing has remarkably gone beyond the premise of reducing costs. It is now highly commoditized, a large contributor to the global economy, and a tool that helps address talent shortage in some countries.

There are a lot of processes that are now being procured from service providers (even the ones located overseas) - from manufacturing and information technology services and software to back office processes. Payroll processing is one of the back office functions that is gaining traction in the outsourcing industry.

BusinessNewsDaily.com shares ways outsourcing payroll process can help improve the day-to-day operations of an organization:

It frees up valuable time.
Outsourcing payroll processes enables business owners to focus on the core functions. By hiring a third party payroll service provider, they save time in keeping their finances in check, especially the wages and taxes of their employees.

It enables them to access the skills that they need.
Payroll service providers have access to talent that is not readily available domestically - at much lower costs. They can also be easily contacted if an employee needs to discuss something about their account, or changes are needed to be made in their information and status.
Payroll service providers are compliant with standards.
Payroll tax issues are hard to dissect, especially if theyíre not in the line of work of the operations manager or business owner. Through outsourcing, reporting and filing to the state and IRS as well as other tasks are done by experts in the field. Some say itís worth spending on the process for it to be done to a T.
It results to reduced manual errors.   
Errors in payroll often result to hefty fines. Apart from having to dedicate time in writing checks, managers need to oversee the payroll taxes, withholdings, insurance, profit-sharing, and 401(k). Outsourcing to service providers ensures minimal manual errors as they use automated tools to perform the tasks.
Significant cost savings

One of the known benefits of outsourcing is cost reduction, and it still holds true. It offers automated processes and allows clients to acquire services in increments.    

Mobile (accessible) monitoring

Executives are known to always be on the go and being able to access payroll processes through mobile devices is a huge plus for them.    

Compliant with tax withholding protocols
Outsourced payroll processes can work in such a way that the provider will be the one to adjust to the various protocols when it comes to withholding tax, particularly for companies operating globally.

Ways to Deal with Multiple IT Providers

by: Sarah Joson

Wednesday, March 26, 2014 | Comments (0)

Category: Outsourcing Research / Trends

Nowadays, itís common to see organizations procuring certain IT services from different vendors at a time. It has become an effective strategy that ensures businesses have the top niche providers for a specific IT task. However, along with the improvements this sourcing model has brought about came the challenges. For instance, when something goes wrong and the productivity of the entire organization is affected, it will take time and resources to rule out which provider triggered the problem.  

A post at CIO.com lists down steps that can help operations managers in multi-sourced set-ups to better oversee service providers.

1. Assign roles and responsibilities outright.
There comes a time when liabilities and responsibilities amongst service providers get a bit unclear, particularly in cases where one provider depends on another to finish certain tasks. To avoid this, clients need to make the ground rules and roles clear so that it will be easier for them to identify the problem, and come up with a solid resolution.  

2. Enforce Operating Level Agreements (OLAs).

It will be easier for vendors involved in a multi-sourced operation to maneuver their ship amongst the other ships in the sea if they have an OLA to follow. It covers ground rules that include how they should interact with each other to achieve the clientís goal.

3. An Outsourcing Cooperation Agreement might come in handy as well.
For end-to-end service levels, it is advised that buyers come up with an outsourcing cooperation agreement which introduces those standards to newcomers. It also encourages the group of providers to discuss financial responsibility and liability. All in all, it is a foundation for the entire multi-sourced ecosystem.
4. Create a command center for operations.
Having a command center helps organize a multi-sourced operation. This business hub will act as a mediator for management tools, contracts, governance processes, and service integration. They will also be responsible for integrating the processes so that operations are not disrupted. Also, instead of meeting the providers one by one, clients will only have to meet with the moderator.
5. Set measurable goals.

In the end, providers should be working towards goals that can be quantified. Some of which can be return on investments, value contributed to the entire business, and increase output.

6. Decide your level of involvement in the process.
You will need to clarify beforehand if you will be mediating the entire process. If you forgo being involved in the process, it will be easier to achieve the preferred operational result since providers will have to work things amongst themselves. If you decide to stay, it can result to vendors pointing their fingers towards you.

7. Listen to comments and suggestions of key providers.
Sometimes, providers like to share their insights about the processes and how they can help your business, as well as theirs. This is a chance for you to learn new things, especially about the ones that are totally outside of your specialization/industry.

8. Create a working environment that exemplifies teamwork. 
Multi-sourced environments can be designed in a way where IT providers can collaborate with one another. This will reinforce teamwork and get work done faster and more efficiently.


An Infographic on the Rising Healthcare Industry in the Philippines

by: Fin Panlilio

Monday, March 24, 2014 | Comments (0)

Category: Outsourcing Research / Trends

The largest group of healthcare providers in the Philippines consists of nurses. Strict overseas employment policies in other countries have led Philippine nursing graduates to seek alternative jobs in the healthcare industry as they await job openings in medical facilities.

This infographic illustrates the reasons

Majority of CIOs to Modify IT Sourcing Partnerships

by: Sarah Joson

Friday, March 21, 2014 | Comments (0)

Category: Outsourcing News, Outsourcing Research / Trends

Results from the latest global survey done by Gartner and recently discussed at SiliconRepublic.com showed that 70 percent of CIOs are looking to modify their sourcing and technology relationships in the next few years.

According to Eric Rocco, Managing Vice-president at Gartner, CIOs are considering switching service providers to keep up with the changes. In addition to that, service providers that are able to assist clients to be more agile with the changes will be taking center stage. Providers should be able to adapt to the demand from the market and consider this as an opportunity.

Rocco added that one of the key drivers of this change is technology, and itís the type of change that is expected to disrupt the conventional business models and its foundations.

Gartner believes that a providerís ability to help clients move through the changes that going digital has brought about will expand the majority of IT services opportunities.

The article also pointed out that cost is no longer the main pivotal point in contracts. In fact, with the two rising segments gaining traction in the tech space (cloud-based infrastructure as a service (IaaS) at 44.9 percent and business process as a service (BPaaS) at 12.4 percent), agility will become the main driver for buyers to adopt cloud computing and not cost.   

Clients are expected to shift from traditional data center to infrastructure outsourcing where infrastructure utility services (IUS), will be managed through IaaS technology. As the trends are changing in the cloud computing world, hybrid IT environments will be at the forefront in terms of IT architecture in the coming years. It will be a fusion of traditional IT environments and the as-a-service operating models.

Rocco pointed out that for providers to successfully win clients, they need to understand what drives their business and design their propositions accordingly. He added that some of the angles that service providers can build their recommendations on are to show clients the value of the service to the business, as well as KPI attainment while maintaining innovation.

What to Avoid when Creating Calls-to-Action

by: Fin Panlilio

Thursday, March 20, 2014 | Comments (0)

Category: Outsourcing Research / Trends

Calls-to-action (or CTAs) matter because they pull in visitors, leads, and customers. An effective CTA is clear and eye-catching, and it is something that makes people want to click. Marketers use CTAs as a means of driving up leads and revenue, or to simply disseminate information.

Itís surprising how many global enterprises still get it wrong when it comes to using CTAs. According to a study by the Content Marketing Institute, these are the findings on how businesses are failing to make the best of CTAs:
  • 96% donít feature any industry how-to guides or white papers on their homepages.
  • 70% donít reference any notable CTAs on their homepages other than the usual "Contact Us" option.
  • 82% donít reference their social media profiles (text or images).
  • 70% of websites with a phone number donít display it in a prominent place.
  • 68% donít include an email address on their homepages, and 38% of websites with an email address, bury it on their homepage (often in the footer).
Conversions depend on calls-to-action. Hereís a list of what you need to avoid when creating CTAs:
  • Fluffy language. People should know exactly what they will achieve by clicking your CTA. If you want your customer to "Download the eBook" then say so. Use clear, concise language that tells them what they are getting in exchange for their click.
  • Ambiguity. Avoid using ambiguous or open-ended invitations. It is not enough to say "Click here" or "Submit". You need concise, jargon-free phrases that will make people want to act. "Start My Free Trial", "View Case Studies", or "Get Started (it's free)" are great examples of CTAs that catch people's attention.
  • Lack of visual impact. Whether presented as a button, an ad, anchor text or image, your CTA needs to stand out from the rest of the page in terms of color, design, and position.
  • Poor placement. The placement of a CTA depends on a number of factors including the goal of your page and the complexity of its information. Generally speaking, lead generation or e-commerce CTAs should be displayed prominently near the top of the page, while more complex pages might call for a CTA below the fold.
  • Failing to optimize your media. For a mobile audience, don't bury your CTA at the bottom of the page where users will be required to scroll endlessly to reach it, or create tiny buttons that will make users fail to notice its existence or that will make it difficult to click. Optimization is key.
  • Lack of personalization. A case study from the MarketingSherpa Email Summit 2013 showed an overwhelming 90% increase in sign-ups by altering one word in a CTA, from "Start your free 30-day trial" to "Start my free 30-day trial". This isn't to say that similar results were acquired from studies in other languages, but the lesson is clear: understand the level of personalization that resonates best with your audience.
  • Lack of testing or analysis. According to Adobe's 2013 Digital Marketing Optimization Survey, 49% of respondents said testing wasn't yet a priority for their company. Don't fall into the same trap. Testing allows you to maximize the impact of your CTA, understand the preferences of your audience, and eliminate language and visuals that fail to deliver results.
  • Not matching reality with expectation. Make sure that your CTA does what it says and leads the visitors straight to the page they want to be on and not to a series of complex sign-up procedures.
  • Failing to SEO your CTAs. Alt tag it with strong keywords if your CTA is embedded as an image. This will guarantee your content is correctly indexed with search engines and will help to increase traffic.
  • Too much choice. Donít confuse your visitors with too many CTAs or buttons per page. Where more than one CTA is necessary, a visual hierarchy will help emphasize priority (eg. more prominent buttons for greater importance).

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