5 Pitfalls of Outsourcing to the Wrong BPO Provider

By Lauren Fritsky


There’s no end to the business goals you can accomplish with a good outsourcing provider: reduced overhead, better efficiency, access to new skill sets and improved customer satisfaction. A bad provider, on the other hand, can completely cripple your business in ways ranging from a toll on your bottom line to inhibited strategy and growth. You can avoid these pitfalls by choosing a business process outsourcing provider that gives you value-added service and aligns with your business needs.

1.  Offers no added value

To get the most out of an outsourcing relationship, you should get more than just what you need. There’s a simple reason for this: your business needs will likely change throughout the duration of your contract, and a truly flexible provider can adapt to continue delivering a quality service. Value-added services will enable the right provider to help in additional areas should you need it down the road.

The wrong provider might also fail to decrease your Total Cost of Ownership or even drive up your costs asking for more money every time you want something outside the scope of work. Having a true partnership with the provider where you are working seamlessly together to reach common goals and objectives will increase the depth of the relationship and deliver better value for money.

2.  Shows poor relationship management

The right partner will provide support through the implementation of formal performance reviews and by setting out clear KPIs, which are aligned with delivering your desired business outcomes.  If you get the wrong provider, you may get stuck waiting days or weeks to get a response to a crucial call or email, costing both time and money. According to a poll by theComputing Technology Industry Association, nearly 28 per cent of businesses say poor communication was the main cause of a failed outsourcing project.

It takes relationship management from both ends to make the outsourcing experience successful. Early on in the business process outsourcing provider relationship, make it very clear what your preferred methods of communication are – teleconference, email, phone or face to face – and schedule in regular meetings to ensure you receive the right insight and analytics throughout the length of the contract.

3. Doesn’t fit in with your business culture

A global KPMG study found 60 per cent of businesses said poor fit was the main issue with their outsourcing relationship.The wrong provider won’t know what your business does or how to deliver work in alignment with your mission and core values.  Choose a provider that offers a client-branded BPO experience and complies with the highly-rated COPC standards of performance management for the customer contact industry.

4. Struggles to meet objectives

Does your provider know the ultimate goals of the outsourcing project? Do you?

One third of businesses say they fail to continually assess projects they’ve outsourced to ensure they remain consistent with the outlined objectives, says a study by ESI International. While part of the success of the project rests on your company providing the right details, selecting a business process outsourcing provider that lacks experience delivering results-driven ROI in a holistic way means an inevitable uphill battle when it comes to meeting goals. The right outsourcing company will shun off-the-shelf solutions in favour of a plan tailored to your business needs and that can be adapted as objectives change or the market shifts.

5.  Fails to understand business complexity

BPO is no easy task, and any provider that thinks otherwise is not the one for you. You are very likely outsourcing mission-critical data, which brings up complexities around risk management, data security and privacy, compliance and quality assurance. Not only must the business process outsourcing provider deeply understand your business andcustomers, but it must have an accurate sense of what it will take to transition your processes and possess the technical know-how to manage them.

The right provider knows your outsourcing solution will require ongoing review, refinement and reengineering to continually meet your business objectives. A COPC-certified company will be able to provide the framework and benchmarking tools necessary to set the standards for outsourcing operations.

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