New Blogger Bob D’Amico has a very funny but profound cartoon in this forum about Contracts and Workplans!
How so true in the context of Outsourcing, especially of Business Processes! We have already heard about Customer Service disasters with some computer companies who are still providing offshore customer support but with their own people instead of an external vendor.
When Workplans, Operational Controls and Process Excellence are not the focus, no contract will compensate for the loss in reputation and good will with end-customers. When Offshoring was newer about 2 or 3 years ago, we all saw an explosion of seminars and webinars on how to create iron-clad contracts. While they are still exteremely important, operational details and process excellence need to be the focus these days, especially with Offshore BPO poised to grow 30% each year in the coming years.
We found increasing awareness of operational transitions and process excellence with both buyers, and providers of BPO services. With a lot of talk about Business Transformation rather than just Business Process Outsourcing, the emphasis will shift from pure Process Governance to Continuous Process Improvement. Eventually both buyers and providers may have to think about Process Redesign, and Process Innovation also in that order.
But all that comes after worrying about simple things like Work Plans, when you come up for air from a sea of contract papers, as the cartoon points out!