TechTarget pithily describes knowledge process outsourcing as the high-end version of business process outsourcing. Because it requires specialization, KPO costs more than BPO services. In essence, knowledge process outsourcing is the next step in the evolution of global sourcing.
BEYOND FLUENCY IN ENGLISH
Unlike its predecessor, KPO doesn't focus on English fluency and basic computer skills as its qualifying criteria for workers. Employees are not only fluent in speaking and writing in English, but they're also graduates of specialized degrees, such as computer engineering, computer science, and mass communications. Some functions of knowledge process outsourcing, such as patent and intellectual property processing, pharmaceutical and biotechnology research, and financial analysis, will require job candidates to have post-graduate degrees (i.e. Ph.D. or M.A.), certifications, internships, and additional training.
QUALITY OF EMPLOYEES
In a knowledge economy, job candidates who possess advanced information search, analytical, interpretation and technical skills are valuable assets. Many workers are graduates of four-year baccalaureate degrees and have at least two years of experience in the BPO industry.
Their jobs in call centers have prepared them in handling customers of different aptitudes and attitudes. They also adapted well to working the night shift. Those same jobs made it possible for them to learn different techniques in persuading potential customers to buy products or subscribe to services that would make their lives better.
But, a job at a call center does not give employees autonomy in performing their jobs. KPO work, on the other hand, allows the employee to make decisions according to their knowledge and experience. This is especially true in outsourced accounting and bookkeeping services. Accountants are given the power to make snap judgments regarding the company's financial statements.
Most knowledge workers are specialists in their field. They bring in-depth knowledge and experience to their work. That's why it's important that clients who outsource those knowledge processes in their companies have great respect and trust for their outsourced staff.
In contrast to BPO where clients hand-off tasks to their offshore team, KPO demands that clients and providers become strategic partners. Employees keep track of their work and manage minor everyday problems, but they will be required to submit daily reports to keep their clients in the loop. In return, clients are expected to provide guidance, additional training, and evaluations to their remote workers.
MORE SAVINGS WITH KPO ENGAGEMENT
Horses For Sources provides great insight into the kind of savings that knowledge process outsourcing brings to clients.
All-in-all, most firms have pretty much trimmed their payroll, accounts payable and customer service staff as much as they can feasibly manage, and once they have moved into a BPO engagement, this is normally the limit of savings they can hope to achieve from offshoring their transaction processes to a third-party provider. Within a couple more years, there won't be many medium-to-large firms left which haven't outsourced most of their transactional processes where is makes business sense to do so.
The next wave of savings will occur from buyers moving elements of higher-value processes over to third-parties, where onshore costs are high and skilled resources often scarce, in areas such as analytics, front-office finance, legal contract development, marketing, clinical data analysis, research and investment services.
According to the writer, buyers will be taking on piecemeal services delivered by qualified workers in an offshore location. Moreover, buyers don't have to take on long-term contracts with outsourcing firms in the beginning. They're given a trial period where they can hire two to three people for a test drive. They can decide to continue with the project or not at the end of the trial period.
While BPO companies hire workers and deliver their quota by volume, KPO companies are more agreeable to taking on projects that will fill only two to five seats on the floor. They are more focused on delivering high-quality work for rates much lesser than those demanded by onshore employees with the same credentials.
If you're considering outsourcing as a cost-saving option for your company, then rethink your staffing solutions through knowledge process outsourcing. Hire workers who are technically skilled and highly educated with the help of an offshore outsourcing company like Rethink Staffing, which specializes in delivering quality services at an affordable cost.