The Power of Evolution
Every great idea comes with an upward curve. It applies to how civilizations thrive and grow. It applies to how new business trends are born. It applies to how the world of outsourcing (the subject of our study here) evolves.
Outsourcing has come a long way. There was a time in the 1990s when the offshoring of workload to overseas resources was seen as an audacious, risk-laced investment. Today, outsourcing isn’t just an adventure. It’s a tried and tested model.
In 2017, the worldwide outsourcing industry was worth $88.9 billion, as per Statista, and it is set to hold steady this year.
Talking about the evolution of outsourcing, newer trends will power it up this year. It’s worth taking a close look at what’s in store in the days to come.
Here are three remarkable outsourcing trends to watch out for in 2018:
- Cloud Computing: The Gathering ‘Clouds’
The biggest buzzword in outsourcing these days is the concept of ‘cloud computing’, which is certainly going to reshape the outsourcing landscape in the near future. Cloud computing is the technique of making use of a network of remote servers, which are hosted on the Internet, to operate and process huge amounts of data. A company doesn’t have to work using a local server or personal computers.A huge number of American and British companies have begun to explore the concept of cloud computing. As per a study conducted by Right Scale in 2017, 95% of business owners said they are using cloud computing systems and are getting the desired results. Over two-thirds of these companies use hybrid public-private cloud services. It means their set-up is partly on the cloud and partly in the form of tangible infrastructure.
Back in 2015, it was widely predicted that the industry of cloud computing would reach a worth of $121 billion in a couple of years time. By the middle of 2018, the figure is expected to touch $200 billion..
Cloud computing’s remarkable cost-effectiveness and an ability to offer customized solutions to clients will quickly make it a darling of the outsourcing industry – if that already hasn’t happened. Interestingly, IT behemoths like Amazon, IBM and Accenture, among others, are likely to get more competition from other IT service providers, thanks to the onset of cloud computing as a new technology.
- Automation: The Human Touch is Passe
Another major trend that is going to become an outsourcing rage is RPA (robotic process automation). It is anticipated that RPA will go on to ensure high productivity and smooth efficiency at lower costs while offering great quality of work and timely delivery.More and more call centers are going for IVR (interactive voice response) systems over human call operators or call center executives. It is a widely acknowledged belief that forward-looking companies from the western world will continue to move past simple labor arbitrage to full-fledged automation.
Thanks to better RPA technologies, the current year is likely to witness fully automated call centers springing up fast in countries like India. The new call centers will provide high-quality services, aided by virtual agents and chat-bots. These state-of-the-art call centers will be able to tackle countless customers at the same time, without any disconnections or glitches.
- Cyber Security: More Sophisticated Data Safety
With technology perpetually evolving, business trends that rely heavily on technological processes (like modern-day outsourcing) will obviously focus a lot more on cyber security than ever before. This increased emphasis on cyber issues is obviously triggering a spurt in hi-tech digital protectionism. Cyber security technology is all set to become a lot more sophisticated than before when it comes to outsourcing. As the year unfolds, companies that outsource their work eastwards will be expecting the most well-encrypted, secure servers for communication.
A global survey conducted by Deloitte in 2016 revealed that corporate respondents (85% of whom were employed with businesses that posted revenues of over $1 billion) pointed to data privacy as a key risk for companies that rely heavily on outsourcing. 39% of those surveyed said that they wouldn’t mind reducing their outsourcing levels due to fears over information security.
Pushing the Boundaries
Way back in the 1990s, who would have thought that the story outsourcing would pan out like this? That a time would come when outsourcing would no longer be about browsing the Internet for freelancers to take up one-off projects. From getting mobile apps built from scratch, to getting recruitment procedures taken care of remotely, to hiring ‘fully employed’ IT resources without recruiting them (as offered by Virtual Employee), companies that bank on outsourcing are pushing the boundaries. And they will keep doing so in the coming months.