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Outsource

7
min read
October 10, 2019

What Is BPaaS And Why Businesses That Use It Succeed

Geoff Whiting

Geoff Whiting

A contributor to Invisible, Geoff is experienced and writes on enterprise tech, B2B SaaS, supply chain, and e-commerce best practices
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The digital revolution pushes on with novel solutions and services, many of which run a Business-Process-as-a-Service model. These BPaaS companies are running our world, with customers like you and me never realizing we’re interacting with a cloud system that’s automating an entire process.

The deployment leads to significant savings and allows scaling to a level where you can check your email or get a report no matter where you are in the world. BPaaS has fundamentally changed our daily lives, and it might be able to do the same for your business.

Defining BPaaS in Practice

Business-process-as-a-service (BPaaS) is a topic that’s gaining prominence lately thanks to a growing set of digital technologies that allow people to complete tasks from anywhere.

bpaas business process as a service
The BPaaS difference is the cloud.

At its core, BPaaS is the operation of business processes, or the delivery of their results, from a contractor or outsourced partner. The company who provides BPaaS completes a business process vital to your operations and then gives you the results.

This can happen directly within your systems, such as working within your CRM and other customer tools to interact with leads and qualify them. BPaaS companies can also deliver just the results of a business process, cutting out your need to have some software or see some tasks. Think of it along the lines of you outsourcing lead generation and your BPaaS partner sends you a list of qualified companies and targets. Bonus tip: here is a tutorial on how to choose the right CRM for your business, and integrate it into your business processes workflows.

BPaaS can be applied to either a horizontal or vertical business process as long as its work or output can be delivered on a cloud-services model. You’ll find many companies have started to outsource entire business processes because it can keep data cleaner, accomplishes tasks faster, and reduces the workload that managers and team leads have to do in order to verify a process is being completed correctly.

Handing something off at the end of a process is typically easier than trying to share data in the middle of a workflow. However, making this type of BPaaS successful requires a competent partner who is willing to work with you on the entire process, from start to finish.

BPaaS Examples You Already Use 

An interesting facet of BPaaS is that some companies use this model as a way to deliver their core services. By offloading interaction and operations to the cloud, they’re able to reach more people and have scaled massively. Sometimes, BPaaS can be tough to get a handle on in terms of its scope and reach. With everything and Anything as a Service (XaaS) out there, these acronyms get muddled.

When you want to know if a business utilizes cloud based BPaaS, ask yourself this:

Do I need to know about or manage any of the databases, networking, or middleware involved in the service or process?

In the majority of our interactions online, the answer is “no.”

BPaaS in the cloud
BPaaS is a crowded field, with plenty of room.

So, here are just a few of the BPaaS services that you’re likely already using but likely didn’t come to mind:

  • Google’s search engine is a cloud-delivered BPaaS, both in terms of what you use in your browser and versions you can install on your own domain to search just your site.
  • PayPal uses BPaaS for its internet payment system and even part of its business services for loans and accounts are automated with this technology.
  • Microsoft’s Skype VoIP service uses BPaaS for its connection platform when you make a call.
  • All email service providers are BPaaS companies because you get access to your email on just about any device as long as you have your password.
  • YouTube’s storage, delivery, and playback for videos is a BPaaS operation.
  • ADP uses BPaaS for its delivery platform services to help companies manage payroll, accounting, and a variety of legal functions.
  • If your website is a WordPress site, then you’re using BPaaS for hosting and maintenance of it.
  • Some even consider social networks BPaaS!

We’re in a BPaaS world. What’s different is now business process outsourcing companies are starting to provide custom BPaaS for the services your business needs, backing technology with the people to make the decisions you need. It’s a next-level service focus.

Service-Oriented Design

An element that sets BPaaS apart from other functionalities or operations delivered as-a-service is that is designed with service of you in mind.

Business processes that BPaaS companies offer are designed to the either get your products/services to customers or to improve the customer experience with those products/services. It doesn’t matter if this is shipping and delivery, sales emails, delivering onboarding documents to new employees, or performing credit checks.

What’s essential here is that BPaaS features and software tend to be standardized so that diverse types of organizations can use them. This allows the software to support automation. Cloud systems allow this type of business process outsourcing to provide cost savings by reducing labor as well as implementing some automation, cutting your process costs.

However, that standardization isn’t right for all businesses. You might need insight and customization, which can make it smart to look at a company that provides BPaaS services (using BPaaS software). They’ll deliver the data and results you need, without you having to manage APIs, troubleshoot software, or needing to have your own infrastructure that can scale with increased activity.

The Human Element in BPaaS

One reason Invisible Technologies' BPaaS solutions are relevant is that many industry leaders, including Gartner, define BPaaS as a subset of business process outsourcing. Specifically, it’s a cloud variant that enables your BPaaS provider to be located anywhere in the world.

It’s important to consider the limitations of service providers as well as the opportunities of new models that can occur with this element of Outsourcing 2.0. Many will push automation when talking about BPaaS because that powers many other XaaS services. Unlike other cloud elements, however, automation should not guide the entire process.

The clear and important distinction here is that when you’re outsourcing business processes, you need a human at the other end of things. That is the key differentiator between BPO vs RPA. Business Process Outsourcing requires humans, and Robotic Process Automation is, for the most part, executed by machines. People are your greatest check against harm, whether that’s intentional or accidental. 

Even something as simple as outsourcing the creation of an email database of attendees to your latest conference — where you’re duplicating a database and verifying it — pure automation can break down at many steps along the way. If it does, you end up with an issue that is discovered after the entire system ran, potentially delaying you for another week.

Humans are still important in the work your business does, so they’re still important to the business processes you outsource.

Big Company Benefits from BPaaS

While we’ve already discussed some of the general benefits of outsourcing business processes, there are additional business gains available through BPaaS.

Working with a business process service allows you to prioritize the successful completion of an entire process, not just an individual task. You’re maximizing potential workflows, when the partner is capable, and ensuring that your team works with what they need instead of having to verify data, constantly email with providers, or step into the middle of a process and take over.

If you’re looking to implement BPaaS that is a vital function of running a business but not a core element of what makes your business unique — think payroll and HR functions — you no longer need specialists to manage the data or tools that are required to operate your business. At the same time, you get consistency in how a process is implemented organization wide.

business process outsourcing
There’s always another process outsourcing opportunity around the corner.

Think of companies with multiple locations, like restaurants or banks. Each individual location will have some variety in how it operates, but there’s plenty of core functionality that must be consistent in order for the head corporation to evaluate each branch’s success. A BPaaS provider can ensure all the complex processes that need to be uniform are, and by linking the process to a cloud service or structure, it’s easier to look at the data and dashboards at any given step.

A few other considerations and savings you might experience when you choose a BPaaS program to help take over some of your processes include:

  • Reduced infrastructure costs thanks to not needing to buy servers and other hardware. Plus, you don’t need to maintain it either.
  • Scaling is more affordable and faces fewer restrictions, especially those related to location, because all that’s needed is a reliable internet connection
  • Automation allows you to ensure a process is done correctly when finalized, and you have partners reviewing things to keep everything on track.
  • Efficiency and budget savings by using cloud computing to manage and optimize system resources, such as storage and processing. You’re only using and paying for what you need.
  • Generally, your data is more secure with partners who specialize in these areas than it is with in-house IT teams.
  • You may be able to add or diversify services more affordably when BPaaS APIs can deliver information to new tools without needing new development.

4 Interesting Areas of BPaaS Potential

bpaas framework
The right BPaaS framework can play a role in your entire business line development.

1. Sales Processes

Your sales operations need to always have the most relevant and up-to-date information available. Calling the wrong number, using the wrong name, or emailing the “info@” address instead of a direct address can also cost you sales.

BPaaS comes into play here with your CRM and contact data in a big way. Your BPaaS partner can help your team by updating and enriching contact data through a mix of automation tools as well as human-based verification. Invisible uses teams of real people with the best tech for high levels of accuracy, giving you the best targets.

2. Human Resources & Recruiting

Much like your sales process, your people processes can be operationalized and automated with a BPaaS partner. The most effective solution is often the hiring the recruiting process. Automation tools can post job openings and perform initial list building and screening, as well as getting candidates on the calendar.

At the same time, a human backbone to the process can perform additional screening, look for exceptional candidates that a system might miss, and be there to assist the candidates themselves so that you are always seen as a helpful, exciting company. BPaaS can help you run better outreach, enrichment, and pipelines for qualified people ready to boost your business.

3. Operations Management

Almost any core back-office operation can be partially automated and transformed with a mix of traditional BPO and BPaaS. There’s no shortage of processes and solutions available to you. This can range from creating legal documents and ensuring compliance to simply scheduling meetings, labeling emails, or keeping tabs on your inventory.

If you think it, BPaaS can do it. Explore and find out how that’ll boost your business in untold ways.

4. Insurance Outsourcing

Digital technologies are able to speed along many processes, especially those where paperwork is massive. Insurance operations is one of these key areas with large document loads during applications. Not only does this come from the individual but all decisions and additional information have specific ways they need to be collected and presented.

Underwriters can turn to BPaaS for some additional support in order to process applications and make adjustments. By managing early tasks and streamlining information as well as its presentation, BPaaS and BPO services can shift the underwriting department’s focus to final decisions and getting out ahead of potential backlogs.

How to Choose a Smart BPaaS Partner

Picking the right outsourcing partner is always difficult, but your BPaaS requirement is going to significantly narrow the field of available partners. This type of BPO means that you need someone who can run the technology stack of your operation while also giving you the automation or manpower to execute, audit, and deliver the data vital to your business.

For BPaaS specifically, consider companies that treat the entire operation as a BPO technology stack that can give you the mix of technology, processes, and applications that you desire. Their capabilities should enable you to customize the business service and integrate it seamlessly into your workflow, whether it is for a specific, small process or an end-to-end solution.

When evaluating BPaaS options, look for brands that have a strong background in both process outsourcing as well as software development. The APIs that BPaaS uses to integrate with your technology stack and perform functions need to perform at very high levels while also being simple to connect to your existing platforms and related services.

BPaaS Outsourcing
Ask for demonstrations showing how data is stored and shared.

Depending on your scale and growth potential, you can also request BPaaS solutions that work in a variety of environments. This includes supporting multiple languages and different database and storage requirements. You want flexibility for how your business is going to grow, not an outsource partner who limits how and when you can scale.

Part of that same growth consideration is how well the BPaaS environment can scale: 

-Is your provider able to handle something that doubles in size with ease? 

-What if you move from a dozen transactions to hundreds each month? 

-If you had a 5x increase in customers, would the existing platform be able to handle it or are you looking at new development costs?

-What’s the minimum number of transactions or clients you need for it to remain viable and valuable?

Cloud technology is supposed to make scaling simple and affordable. Your partner should be able to pass that capability and savings on to you. Having a larger set of customers can help protect you, as the provider will spread out their development costs among a greater pool of companies.

While BPaaS itself can be complex, there’s no need to have the selection process be confusing. Invisible works with companies of all sizes and needs to understand the top business processes they want to outsource and automate. We talk with leaders almost every day to explain how the concept and specific applications work, then help them find what is right and smart. It’s all designed to give you the tools you need to make the best decision for you.

Let’s get started with the most important question for anyone considering BPaaS: Does your company have processes that unnecessarily slow things down?

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