BPO Sector - Employment & Training
Selecting New Employees
one has coined the word ‘HumanWare’ some time back to describe the most
important asset of a BPO company, the people. Companies depend not only on hardware,
software but most importantly on Humanware. Software and hardware come
only next to people in meeting the customer demands.
Developments in Artificial Intelligence or Speech recognition
systems can not substitute skilled contact center executives and back
to the manpower requirements, identifying the ‘right candidate’ is
very important. Hence your recruitment shall take care of Job
requirement analysis and the candidate's competency analysis. Let’s
discuss an example of a contact center and analyze how to recruit
for this center.
Look back at your requirement:
onus of getting the right candidate is on the HR department and they can
not shy away from this. Create
a Job Definition Form (JDF) that covers all aspects to be looked into for
selecting a candidate for the given position/post. Ask the concerned
departments to fill in the JDF with out fail. Do not process any request
with out complete JDF.
shall clearly address the role. For example, mention if the job is
for a Voice based call center position or for a non-voice based
position. If the job is a voice based one, mention which kind of accent
is required (such as American or British etc).
the HR team has various options. Approach the manpower consultants or go
in for direct recruitment. However, define a strategy for all
requirements. Never give
exceptions. All must go through a process.
you freeze on the JDF and number of people to be recruited, plan your
schedule. If you need to hire 100 people a month, be prepared to
screen lot of people. Preferably out-source preliminary screening
to another company. A
Skill / Competencies to be looked into
you are recruiting a call center executive, you need to address many
issues, including the maturity of the candidate. Some attributes in a
person can be improved upon training and certain can not be improved.
Psychologists talk about Cognitive and non-cognitive concepts.
Hire a psychologist and define an assessment for the entry level
as well as top level.
Important skills to be
checked before taking in a call center representative
to work in a Team
Do not presume
not expect all the selected candidates to take the offer. Many
candidates take the offer letter to some other company and bargain for
more pay. Probably the same
candidate will have two or three offers and will pick the best offer. You
should also consider your attrition rate when hiring new employees. You
need to hire more candidates than needed if the attrition rate is high.
is the most expensive part of it all. Hence try to recruit people who
can be trained. If you take care of this while recruiting, you will have
fewer problems. We can not
teach numerical abilities some one. Hence hire somebody only if they
have certain numerical skills.
in the areas of Language, accent and client interaction is most
critical. Training program should be customized keeping in view, where
the candidate is likely to be posted. Involve the real job activity in
the training program.
there is not enough time, at least provide inputs to them about the
critical areas. Provide a
simulation of your actual software for training so that they can
directly go the call floor after the training. Run mock tests and ask
the floor managers to evaluate them.
Beware and be ready!
a HR person, you are answerable to between many people. The call floor
manager wants the best candidates for his team.
Generally they are busy and can not give detailed requirements.
Trainers want the best candidates to be sent to them. It
would be easy for
them to slightly polish good candidates and pass them off to the call floor.
But you will find
very difficult to get good people.
need to strike a balance and get reasonably good people who are
trainable. Trainers will
find it a bit inconvenient, but then they are paid to train. They may
enjoy the challenge of training people with varying abilities. All the
concerned parties should meet periodically to discuss hiring policies.
a candidate and review the candidate’s voice recording. Ask all the
concerned parties to grade the voice. The criteria should include
accent, pronunciation, intonation, pitch, clarity etc. You will be
surprised to see different opinions from different people about the same
candidate. It is difficult to satisfy all the people. How ever make a
process, fine tune it, stick to it and every thing will fall in line.