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The BPO Story: Pains & Gains of Remodeling/Reinventing 

The story of the Indian BPO sector is a fascinating one! It has the excitement of childhood, the vagaries of the youth and the somberness of mid-life, where it probably stands today. Given that the country’s BPO sector has been the poster boy of the global peers, there are similar pains and gains that the IT companies servicing customers remotely are facing the world over.

If we were to sum up the more than two decade long journey in a few sentences or rather phases, it would read like: BPOs started as vendors who could help companies cut costs (as much as up to 40 per cent) by taking a few functions and delivering them remotely. The financial services industry lapped it up, saw benefit and other sectors followed suit. As the sector and the productivity delivered grew, the demands on the vendors grew. Given the margins, it still seemed doable till a few years ago. However, with the downturn, customers’ enthusiasm curled up a bit and they wanted more value for the dollar spent. The past few years have seen tighter margins, more regulatory pressures and the customer holding the precious dollar to their chest.

In response, the vendors shrank, sheared their underbellies to optimize operations and cut their own costs. But there is only as much for a vendor to do without getting into a downward spiral of service quality by letting people go and not paying for the right kind of skills. CATCH-22!

In a nutshell, customer’s demand changed to more services, technology, domain expertise at lesser or no additional cost. The vendors start reeling under the pressure of demanding customer and eluding resources. Right now, if you will, the sector is somber after the heady experience of an exuberant youth. Here’s how

  • Vendors are facing fierce competition
  • Price wars will only be killers of quality & innovation 
  • Customers: Faced with receding bottomlines, need reassurance of magic solutions
  • Vendors: Faced over-reaching capacity, skills dilution, and resource turnover
  • With both reeling under changed expectations, the ecosystem must find a middle path. 
  • The customer needs to understand and manage the risks associated with cost compression
  • The reinvention/remodeling is inevitable to skirt the new set of risks thrown up by the pressures faced by the two sides

The pains apart, let us not forget the gains. As clients have continued to increase pressure on vendors to deliver more value, the vendors actually have moved up to become strategic & innovation partners with domain expertise. What is more, customers are actually finding value in paying for the same. Services delivered are no longer transactional but include knowledge management, business process innovation, co-creation of products and services, and the creation of new intellectual property. A win-win! And the evolution is on…

To help the industry script the next few chapters of the Great Indian BPO story, NASSCOM is delighted to announce the 14th edition of the NASSCOM BPO Summit 2012 at Gurgaon between September 5 & 6.




Please contact Event Help Desk for any further information, you may require.

Bangalore: Bharati Kapoor, Ph: +91-80-41151705-706, Email:

Chennai: Nikita Shah, Ph: +91-44-42327272/7070, Email:

Delhi: Upasana Channana, Ph: +91-11-23010199, Email:

Hyderabad: Padmapriya, Ph: +91-40-66366111/222/333, Email:

Mumbai: Chetna Desai, Ph: +91-22-28234844/51, Email:

Pune: Darryl Zuzarte, Ph: +91-20-25630415, Email:

Kolkata: Aninda Das, Ph: +91-33-44006966, Email:


September 05, 2012 — 8:00 am to
September 06, 2012 — 6:00 pm

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The Leela Kempinski
Ambience Island
National Highway - 8
Gurgaon, Haryana