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Margin squeeze gets heads of BPO firms to focus on verticals, processes

20-May-2004
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Margin squeeze gets heads of BPO firms to focus on verticals, processes

In a sure sign of the maturing of the industry, CEOs of Indian BPO companies are now actively deliberating on meeting the next level of challenges. The top-of-mind issues for them have changed from selling India and countering the so-called backlash to building focus, bettering service delivery and building global delivery capabilities. This was evident from the opinions of more than 20 CEOs who participated in the 2nd India BPO Summit organized by V&D bpOrbit in four major centers of BPO activity—Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, and Chennai. V&D bpOrbit is India’s only publication for the BPO industry, brought out by Cyber Media.

With increasing competition and pressure on margins, focus on specific verticals and processes are on top of the agenda for most CEOs of leading companies. This seems to be the point where there seems to be a wide consensus among all top honchos. Another issue that has a major mindshare among CEOs is the issue of managing cost—especially that of operation. This is a direct result of attrition and the rising rupee. Also, building global service delivery capability is something that almost all major companies are looking at. However, barring a few, the companies have not yet implemented the plans. Onshore delivery capability in target markets (like US and UK), though top of mind, has no practitioners yet.

Also important for the panelists were issues of attrition, and intra-industry cooperation. A few panelists also stressed the need for government’s role in helping the industry build manpower resource.

Some senior executives who participated in different locations included Raman Roy, chairman & CEO, Wipro Spectramind; Atul Kunwar, MD, eFunds International; Akshaya Bhargava, CEO, Progeon; R Mohan, CEO, Hinduja TMT; Prakash Gurbaxani, CEO, Transworks; Raju Bhatnagar, president, ICICI Onesource; Anirudha Joshi, MD, Zenta; Dan Sandhu, CEO, Vertex India; Shekhar Mulatti, country head, Greenpoint Mortgage; Prashant Sahni, CEO, Tecnovate eSolutions; R Jagadish, CEO, Allsec Technologies; Bharat Chadda, Country Head, Sutherland Technologies, Kaushal Mehta, CEO, Motif; Pradeep Nevatia, MD, Lason India; and Uma Krishnan, COO, Optimus Outsourcing.

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