One country that consistently stands out as a favourite location for offshore customer experience (CX) delivery is South Africa.
According to a McKinsey & Company report, the business process outsourcing (BPO) sector in South Africa employs more than 270 000 people in six cities, with 65 000 serving international clients. Amazon, for example, recently set up customer service operations in South Africa, with 7,000 employees now serving Amazon customers in Europe and North America.
Outsourcing to South Africa makes sense: English language capabilities, a favourable exchange rate, cost competitive (11% below the global average), a large pool of skilled labour, a well-known strong work ethic, professional delivery. With cost savings of up to 60% compared to onshore delivery, it’s no surprise South Africa is one of the largest offshore locations for UK and Australian businesses.
South Africa offers an extremely compelling value proposition to the rest of the world, so if you are looking for a customised, outsourced BPO solution that gives you the competitive edge, get in touch with us today.
Location, location, location
In the aftermath of the pandemic, businesses across the globe continue to learn that a physical office location isn’t a requirement for productivity and performance.
Businesses are also learning that outsourcing non-core processes to offshore locations can boost their post-pandemic recovery by reducing costs, improving operational efficiencies, helping to achieve economies of scale and mitigating location and overhead risks.
Add to this the growing demand for exceptional technical and customer service support – brought about by rapid digitisation – and businesses are quickly learning they may not have the in-house capabilities to meet the needs of their post-pandemic customers, who these days expect immediate responses to their queries via email, WhatsApp, a chatbot, AI or a customer service agent.
The Covid-19 pandemic: Lessons in location
While most aspects of ‘normal’ life are returning in our post-Covid world (or rather, a world learning to live with Covid), one element of the pandemic that’s here to stay within many sectors is remote working. As more and more organisations realise they don’t need a bricks-and-mortar office to maintain productivity, more employers are embracing remote working – be it fully home-based or a hybrid model of home and in-office working.
The numbers speak for themselves
Take a look at some recent research:
- In one LinkedIn survey, 55% of respondents stated they believe their industry can be effective with a remote workforce.
- Employers may have no choice but to offer remote working if they want to attract and retain talent. A large study in the US revealed that one in three employees would quit their jobs if they were no longer allowed to work remotely.
- In the same study conducted in Europe, 89% of companies claimed they plan on having hybrid workforces.
South Africa is primed and ready for remote working & the need for (digital) speed
The Covid-19 pandemic taught businesses some tough lessons. One of the biggest learnings? Digital transformation is key to the success of remote working.
When the pandemic hit, organisations lagging behind in digital readiness faced the challenge of shifting an onsite workforce to remote working – and all the technical and digital requirements that went with it.
It’s safe to say remote working accelerated digital transformation for many businesses. In one study, more than 70% of those surveyed shared that digital transformation projects that would’ve taken years to complete pre-pandemic, were signed off and implemented within a matter of weeks during the pandemic.
In South Africa, the transition to remote operations across various industries was smooth and quick. This was largely thanks to investment in the digitisation of processes and platforms, and the country’s sophistication in technology – a combination of factors that make South Africa a clear winner when it comes to offshoring BPO.
- As remote work sweeps the U.S., 55% say it can succeed in their industry. (2022). Retrieved 19 October 2022, from https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/remote-work-sweeps-us-55-say-can-succeed-industry-george-anders/
- State of Remote Work 2021 | Owl Labs. (2022). Retrieved 19 October 2022, from https://owllabs.com/state-of-remote-work/2021
- Labs, O. (2022). State of Hybrid Work 2021: Europe Edition. Retrieved 19 October 2022, from https://resources.owllabs.com/state-of-hybrid-work/2021/europe
- (2022). Retrieved 19 October 2022, from https://newsroom.cisco.com/c/r/newsroom/en/us/a/y2020/m05/appdynamics-delivers-new-research-revealing-95-percent-of-organizations-have-changed-their-technology-priorities-because-of-the-covid-19-pandemic.html
- South Africa’s BPO sector surges on the back of global recovery – GBS World. (2022). Retrieved 19 October 2022, from https://gbs.world/blog/2021/08/29/south-africas-bpo-sector-surges-on-the-back-of-global-recovery/
- BPO Insights: The changing face of customer service in a post pandemic economy | Outsource Accelerator. (2022). Retrieved 19 October 2022, from https://www.outsourceaccelerator.com/articles/bpo-insights-the-changing-face-of-customer-service-in-a-post-pandemic-economy/
- Advisory, R. (2022). South Africa is 2021’s Most Favored Offshore CX Delivery Location. Retrieved 19 October 2022, from https://ryanadvisory.com/south-africa-is-2021s-most-favored-offshore-cx-delivery-location/