With its immense pool of skilled labor and low cost of production, India is touted to be the next big thing in the KPO scene. KPO, or Knowledge Processing Outsourcing, refers to the outsourcing of high-end knowledge work to India. The capabilities and potential of this country’s knowledge workers have attracted interest and investment from international multinationals. According to a report by GlobalSourcingNow, the global KPO industry is projected to reach $17 billion by 2010, from which $12 billion would be sent to India. The same report estimates the Indian KPO sector to employ more than 250,000 professionals in the Indian segment by 2010. Services that are outsourced to India include learning solutions, animation design, training, consultancy, legal services, content writing, and business and research solutions, among many subjects.
At present, India is considered to be the most preferred KPO outsourcing destination; however, other countries like China, Russia and Israel are also expected to join the bandwagon.
Here is a list of the country’s top 10 KPO companies and a look into their successful worlds.
Founded in 1997, Genpact—the erstwhile-outsourcing wing of GE Capital—leads the pact. Having formed an independent entity in 2005, Genpact has a network in 13 countries of more than 30 operations centers, including leading enterprises such as Nissan, Wachovia, Hyatt and GE. It offers a wide range of services including finance, IT infrastructure, supply chain management and analytics and hence is guaranteed to stay at the top of the list for years to come. With a workforce of more than 37,000 employees, Genpact’s revenue for the year 2008 stood at $1040 million.
Evalueserve, which was set up in 2000, was the pioneer of the “KPO” concept in India. It provides excellent Knowledge Processing Outsourcing services to its clients, which include insurance companies, private equity firms, investment banks, retail and commercial banks, law firms, among others. Evalueserve’s global research centers are situated in India, China, Romania and Chile. This KPO’s aim is to maximize value delivered to clients while minimizing the cost. Over the past 8 years, Evalueserve has witnessed successful organizational growth across the world as well as the doubling of its revenue each year.
Internationally recognized as a leading global provider of market research solutions, Ugam Solutions offers end-to-end services across the survey research value chain. Over 1000 knowledge experts are employed in the company’s established offices in India, London, USA, and Coimbatore. Among its multifarious services, Ugam offers advanced analytics, report writing, survey programming, project management and international online and telephone data collection. Since its inception in 2001, the company has been consistently delivering tremendous value and cost benefits to its clients.
Principally distinguished by its deep domain expertise and end-to-end service offerings, WNS Global Services occupies the second place in this list. Based in Mumbai, Warburg Pincus is its main investor firm. WNS boasts of 215 plus global clients. Established in 1996, this Nasdaq-listed company has been serving numerous industries such as healthcare, manufacturing, retail, distribution, insurance and travel. At present, WNS has more than 21,000 persons working for it and has clocked revenues of about $539 million as of 2008.
Established in 2000, 24/7 Customer is the first outsourcing company to offer integrated “Customer Lifecycle Management” (CLM) services to its clients. Among the many accolades proffered on 24/7, some of the notable ones include the “CCF award for Best Non-European Call Centre” (2009 and 2007) and a ranking in the “Top 5 Hot Offshore Players by Business Week” (2006). With 7,500 employees providing services from 9 global delivery centers, this KPO is known to successfully serve over 1000 global clients. In order to address business challenges at every stage of the customer lifecycle, 24/7 Customer launched the 24/7 Innovation Labs, which represent the next generation of design thinking.
Firstsource was established in 2001 and was formerly known as ICICI OneSource. Ranked among the top 10 ITES companies in 2007 (by Nasscom), it is a leading player in global business process management. It is commendable to note that Firstsource is the first pure play BPO company in the world to secure ISO 20000 and ISO 27001 certifications. It has numerous leading global clients to whom it offers BPO services spanning customer care, billing and collections, business research and analytics and customer acquisition. Among several notable clients, Firstsource boasts of a clientele subsuming FTSE 100 media companies, 3 of the 5 largest US banks, top 5 UK banks and 2 of the world’s largest telecom companies.
Headquartered in New York (USA), EXL Service has been offering integrated outsourcing solutions since its inception in 1999. It was started by a young group of talented experienced professionals in Delaware and has come a long way since. EXL’s global team of 9,000-odd knowledge professionals offer solutions for internal audit, compliance and accounting and financial reporting, across its service delivery centers in India. Among its many awards, EXL has been proffered the ISO 9001:2000 certification for excellence in operational performance and ISO 27001 and BS 7799 for information security.
Copal Partners was founded by Mr Rishi Khosla and Mr Joel Perlman in 2002. A KPO based in Gurgaon (India), Copal offers outsourced financial research and analytics services to reputed clientele like private equity funds and investment banks. Through the use of Information Security Management System, EXL is able to exercise information security and regulatory compliance. With over 1,000 employees worldwide, Copal Partners is regarded as one of the leading research and analytics providers in the international outsourcing scene.
A recipient of the Excellence in Outsourcing award from Frost & Sullivan, Pangea3 is world-renowned for its legal process outsourcing (LPO) services. It offers superior quality corporate, risk management, litigation and intellectual property services to a global clientele that includes Fortune 1000 corporations. Pangea3 is set apart by the fact that its employees comprise dedicated and experienced US, UK and Indian attorneys, scientists, engineers and professionals who strive to provide valuable legal services from 7 offices across India and the USA.
One of the biggest players in its domain of outsourced publishing services, TechBooks follows an innovative offshore model which has attracted outsourcing tasks from big publishers across two continents. With its focused strategy of providing content solutions, TechBooks has managed to register impressive growths in the past few years. As opposed to other outsourcing company business models, TechBooks launched project management teams in the USA and the UK and maintained the backend office in India. Its main strategic business units include the educational-publishing group, the information-publishing group and the professional-publishing group.
Since there is high demand for knowledge workers with sophisticated analytical and specialized skills, the outsourcing of knowledge processes is far more challenging than that of business processes. However, India appears to be well-prepared to cater to the advanced needs of its KPO clients and offer them superior knowledge services at affordable rates.
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