Pioneering A Silicon Valley Startup Culture In The BPO Industry
The business process outsourcing industry continues to thrive as more and more companies engage in subcontracts with third parties for business-related operations. With technological innovations, economies are moving at a faster rate than ever. About this, startups are also growing at a rapid pace. And being one of the types of businesses that can take advantage of the services the BPO industry offers, demands for and within the BPO industry continues to evolve just as rapid growth forecasts remain.
In 2015, the Harvard Business Review published an article detailing how startups are outsourcing contact support and alternative business solutions for IT, marketing, and other industries. The write-up focused mainly on the crucial role the Philippines has by serving as one of the top BPO countries in the world. With more than one million individuals making up the BPO workforce in the country and with an expected $25-billion revenue for 2016, the Philippines identifies as a key player in this global industry.
The sectors with the fastest growth are demanding for high-end skills that can cover data analytics, mobile app development, SEO management, and digital marketing. Hence, the BPO industry also requires people capable of providing technology-driven services. In the last year, the Philippines saw an influx of technology startups. Reasons for the inflow of clients to the Southeast Asian country are related to cost-efficient labor, a dominantly young and educated workforce, and an English-speaking population. Also on the plus side for American startup companies, they find it more appealing to work with Philippine-based BPO companies because of the Filipino labor force’s intimate familiarity with American culture as a product of decades of colonial rule.
Addressing High Turnover Rates
However, despite the increase in the number of startups working with the outsourcing companies in the Philippines, the country still had to deal with a relatively high turnover rate of employees in the business. In 2011, the BPO industry in the country experienced a whopping 33 percent turnover rate. This number fluctuated in the next couple of years upon garnering 24 and 26 percent attrition rates for 2012 and 2013 respectively. It was only in 2014 when the turnover rate fell to 20 percent. These rates are issues of concern for any business but more for a supposedly growing industry.
If you’re a business owner, you would want to keep a talented and developing workforce instead of continuously hiring different staff members who could do the job for your company but would eventually choose to leave after a relatively short period of employment. Some BPO companies in the Philippines have found a way to retain their skilled employees and consequently decrease the turnover rate. Recently, adopting the culture of a Silicon Valley startup has done the trick for these outsourcing companies. Providing venues and materials for relaxation, exercise, and the reenergizing of individuals has mostly helped increase the productivity rate of employees as well as their desire to stay with the company.
In any business, employees are arguably the most valuable resource and asset as their output and the quality of their work ultimately leads the company to achieve its goals. In turn, the quantity and quality of work are also, to some extent, dependent on the employees’ contentment with their workspace and the social life they have at work.
The Relations of Stress and Efficiency in the Workplace
The reactions of every individual to the pressures he or she faces has direct consequences to the overall effectiveness of the work team or organization the person is working under. With greater pressure comes a greater need for an outlet to release the stress. Now, new generations of startups and other companies are designing and implementing a work culture that is more enjoyable, vibrant, and that are, in a sense, more friendly and considerate of their workforce. You can take these best practices and apply them to your own workspace. To be sure, you can consult a patent attorney if there are any very specific strategies that are patented by companies, it pays to be a bit cautious.
Many companies including those in the BPO industry are starting to adopt a Silicon Valley startup culture to achieve greater work engagement and to generate creative and standout ideas for businesses to attract employees. These setups help foster a work culture that thrives on camaraderie among and general well-being of the staff.
Balancing Work and Play
One key element in a Silicon Valley startup is the right combination of work and play by setting up initiatives that will allow employees to feel comfortable and less tense than when implementing a strict work structure. Some of these initiatives allow pets inside the office area, set game time as a form of break, organize chill after-work activities or special outdoor adventure trips. All these efforts perpetuate a culture of camaraderie and togetherness that is beneficial to the human resources and consequently to the further development of the company.
Aside from building teamwork among the staff, another key result of these recreational activities is an improved and more efficient communication between the individuals that drive the company forward. And from experience, having an improved communication also means achieving improved relationships for colleagues and, in turn, becomes evident in the quality of work output.
Having an improved communication also shows us a decrease in the gap between employer and employee. And many people can attest to this, the gap between the leaders and the rest of the team is inversely proportional to the level of overall productivity in work. Hence, these activities and initiatives will help break any barriers present to improve the work environment in the office.
Another benefit out of these activities is the breaking of a potential mundane and routinary work for everyone. Recreational activities can recharge employees and give them a new sense of excitement through variation in work. And again, a content and happy workforce give off a positive vibe that will more than likely generate better quality output.
If we consider the people we employ and work with as our most valuable asset, then having employees who have the potential to succeed and bring the company forward is a crucial element in our business. The initiatives we discussed here are not necessarily the best practice for every business or startup, whether in the BPO industry or not, since each group of people work differently as individuals and as a team. But these activities definitely drive emerging startups, particularly in the Philippines, to achieving lower turnover rates with better-quality deliverables. These businesses also deserve credit for being open to new approaches and changes in work culture as the needs and demands of people also shift within different global industries.