Apex - Offshore Call Center

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Introduction

Background 

With the ever-increasing demand of customer support, APEX that mainly deals in customized computer systems, hardware’s and other IT support is in need to increase its staff in order to be able to offer 24/7 over the phone support to its existing and potential customers. APEX has been in the market for over 5 years now, and to meet the challenges and stay in market, it’s very important that the business should and must open a Call Centre through which various customer support services and sales can be generated. To do so, a report is generated that highlight the trends taking place in the Call Centre business, which country is ideal to have an offshore Call Centre, challenges that are likely to be faced by the business and most important the role of managers in IHRM. 

Aims
This report will give an in detailed analysis about India as the preferred destination for offshore Call Centre, how the employees will be recruited, what strategies to consider and most importantly what are the benefits that APEX can get by having this offshore Call Centre. 

Call Centers: trends, challenges, issues 

Over the years Call center have becomes a major aspect of the post industrial employment landscape as it helps businesses in able to achieve their goals in a more efficient manner. As stated by Mukherjee and Malhotra, 2009, the employee turnover is high and the overall employee morale is usually low. One of the major challenges in the call Centre industry is the high turnover rate, that exist mainly because of the routine work and low pay (Brannan. M, 2015). 

Given the profound developments taking place in Call Center technologies, there are a number of trends I believe we must prepare for. These are not predictions - they have already been set in motion and are changing the Call Center landscape significantly and rapidly. There’s no doubt that major developments has taken place in call centre industry, various technologies are already been deployed by companies and many are like to be implemented in the near future (Francisco. S & Brad. C, 2006). Few of the prominent trends that have already taken place are for example: 

Nowadays, customers are more informed about the products and services they should be getting and as for this very reason they have higher expectations. Pretty much any business will require staff for their call centre, in case of businesses operating in different countries will definitely need agents. To be able to provide better quality service, it is very important to equip the call centre staff with adequate knowledge along with the right set of skills. A major change in call centre structure has also been noticed as many call centre agents have not the freedom to work from the comfort of their home (Francisco. S & Brad. C, 2006). 

Roles of IHRM in off-shoring 

In order to understand the role that HR plays in international offshoring it is really very important to understand the two different terms, offshoring and IHRM. Talking about offshoring, it refers to the relocation of any business processes to other countries in order to support their existing business operations (Mihalache et al, 2012). There is no doubt that offshoring has many advantages, to name few, it allows businesses to hire cheap labour, large pools of qualified workers and specialized talented people (Larsen et al. 2013).

On the other hand, IHRM (international human resource management) is different from Human Resource Management, as that only deal with people within the workplace, however IHRM is responsible for dealing with people, training them across different cultures, ethical values and religions (HRINASIA.com). Based on this information, its very understandable and clear that HR usually deals with internal matters, for example training of employees who are hired from the same culture. On the other hand, IHRM has to deal with various aspects, such as managing employees across different cultures, have to take their religions into considerations, their beliefs and values as well. IHRM is constantly moving forward, in a more competitive environment where it has to take care of line-of-business and not only the country its operating in. IHRM is far more complex as compare to the usual HR, as with IHRM there are issues associated with it on both external and internal levels (Budhwar. P, 2012). 

All those activities and practices that are part of HR, becomes more complex when consider from the IHRM context. The same process of recruitment and selection within the same country is relatively easier as compare to when the same process has to be carried out in different countries. At the same time the function of training for International HR departments is usually complex, as in the process of training their regional managers, companies have to train them from the global perspective (Barrachina. M, 2019). To be able to recruit the right talent in India for the Call Centre business, won’t be a major problem, mainly because of the fact that India is already home to hundreds of Call Centres and a large pool of talented and skilful people can easily be generated.

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