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What Are BPO Services?

Simply put, BPO (business process outsourcing) is when a company contracts with a third party provider of operational tasks. An example of BPO is when a company partners with a call center to have their calls professionally handled so they can focus on their core business competencies.

Image of blue arrows and a grey background depicting BPO or business process outsourcing

Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) is used by many companies for a variety of reasons. BPO can be defined as defined as a third party performing the essential operational roles and responsibilities of certain business functions for a company.

Business Process Outsourcing does not just mean call center functions being outsourced overseas.  A company can, and if they are smart, outsource many functions that are not their core competencies in order to gain efficiencies, save time and allow them to focus their limited resources on the more critical pieces of their business.

The tasks  performed (‘outsourced’) by the third party may include anything from manufacturing to back office functions like data entry, human resources, finance and accounting, medical records processing, review of x-rays, etc. Companies will also outsource more typical front line customer service type functions as well, including order processing, order placement, technical support, help desk, responses to basic/advanced FAQs, and more.

Usually BPO, as a strategy, is implemented as an efficiency improvement measure for tasks that a company requires but does not depend upon to maintain their position in the marketplace — typically referred to as a company’s core competencies. Rather than spend money on building space, equipment and hiring additional employees to complete those necessary business tasks, companies can outsource the work to a competent partner, which will save them lots of time and budget.

Thanks in large part to technology, many companies of all shapes and sizes utilize BPO/outsourcing services.  In fact, many of the companies you know, interact with regularly, and perhaps even work for are outsourcing a multitude of functions without you realizing it.

  • Did the bank who refinanced your last mortgage enter the information from all of your documentation into their system or was it outsourced?
  • When you have a question about the newest software version you just upgraded to, does Bill in the IT Department from Microsoft handle all of your questions, or are you routed to a call center who specializes in technical support who can  diagnose  your problem and quickly answer your questions?
  • Does the payroll department where you work create and issue your paycheck or do they utilize the service and economies of  scale provided by a company like ADP?
  • When you went to the hospital last, were your MRI scans  reviewed and diagnosed by someone in the basement of the hospital or were they outsourced to a doctor in another location?

Are you sure?  As Thomas Freidman succinctly put it, these day the world (really) is flat — borders and time zones are disappearing faster than ever.  And BPO – business process outsourcing – has become the norm versus the exception to help companies succeed. There are undoubtedly many advantages of BPO and there are all types of BPO providers. Now that you’ve gotten the answer to the question of “What are BPO Services” you must ask yourself if your business should explore the possibility of leveraging some BPO companies.

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This entry was posted in BPO (Business Process Outsourcing), Business, Call Center News, Outsourcing and tagged by John Dubay. Bookmark the permalink.

About John Dubay

As Director of Operations, John Dubay is responsible for managing the day-to-day operations of Sound Telecom's multiple service delivery centers and for ensuring the highest levels of service, support, quality and value for Sound Telecom's many clients. John brings 20+ years of experience in client services, account management and operations management with outsourced BPO and customer service organizations worldwide to Sound Telecom. His ability to leverage previous experiences in multiple industry verticals and successes in the consistent management and delivery of client specific operational metrics adds value to both Sound Telecom and our diverse client base. John earned his Bachelor of Arts degree from Washington State University where he studied business administration, international business and economics.