More companies are doing so to keep up with the competition, with an annual growth rate of 8% expected by 2022.
But outsourcing itself is constantly evolving, transforming every year according to the needs and desires of businesses. What does 2019 hold in store?
The top three outsourcing trends for 2020
The Industrial Revolution brought about an age of fierce competition in which companies sought ways to extend their reach and profits. During that time, full control over the company was the ideal structure.
But things have changed. With globalization came the need for diverse and fluctuating services, many of which corporations had little knowledge. Outsourcing preened its wings and became a staple part of business culture, finally garnering a name for itself in 1989.
Previous years have seen companies scrambling to find outsourcing services to meet all their needs. Now, things are starting to shift as technology, costs, security, and the desire for uniformity unfold.
1. Virtual assistants and chatbots
Have you noticed how many chat boxes take over your screen while visiting websites? Have you ever wondered how many real people are actually behind the keyboard? By the time next year comes around, 85% of all customer interactions won’t require a human anymore. This is all part of the new virtual world. It’s also part of outsourcing.
What supervisor would say no to an employee that never gets sick, calls for time off, or doesn’t take vacations? Not to mention, being able to handle any number of conversations at once. This is what chatbots and virtual assistants offer at lower costs than hiring a 24/7 team of real people.
Chatbots also provide consistency, something sought after and prized by consumers. While they can’t yet interact with the emotional knowledge humans have, they can take care of mundane tasks that don’t require this level of intimacy, such as qualifying customers, scheduling meetings, and more. Therefore, it’s no wonder these virtual workers are taking over outsourcing to call centers.
Next year will see the use of virtual assistants continue to rise, and it won’t be long before entire sales processes—including those requiring human intuitiveness—are taken over by bots.
2. Cloud outsourcing
Why keep everything on a desktop and deal with the hassles of maintenance when someone else could do it for you? Cloud use by corporations has skyrocketed in recent years. It’s estimated that almost 85% of enterprise workloads will be located on the cloud by 2020.
With the transition to cloud-based services comes new dilemmas, including how to handle the numerous platforms businesses utilize through the cloud. Enter outsourcing. Many businesses turn to all-in-one platforms offered by companies to handle the numerous programs used. These cloud businesses also provide maintenance and store company data.
However, this leads to another significant concern, and consequently another trend: security. As more corporations lean heavily upon the cloud, anxieties over leaks, hacks, and regulations heighten. Even if the company’s information isn’t located at their physical headquarters, they still must comply with laws and ensure their consumers’ information is secure. Thus, expect more outsourcing for cloud security and IT gurus to take care of these new developments.
3. Single-firm outsourcing
It’s frustrating trying to juggle multiple applications at once, and even more so when tasks are thrown into the mix. That’s why corporations are turning to outsourcing companies that offer numerous services through one provider.
“A professional employment organization that can provide multiple services offers more value than one that offers a select few services.” - Layne Davlin, founder of Einstein HR.
In the past, companies outsourced to several providers, making lateral communication practically impossible and slowing production. Now businesses are turning to providers who have all the necessary skill sets under one roof.
Other trends coming our way
Security and compliance concerns are at the forefront, meaning they’ll continue to be a large part of outsourcing in the future. In 2018, 90% of IT professionals pointed out that cloud security was a significant concern, and 2019 has shown similar results, so it’s no surprise that we expect this trend to continue well into 2020 as well. Among the most pressing issues are data leaks, emergency backups, privacy concerns, and confidentiality breaches. As laws and regulations concerning the cloud develop, companies will turn to IT professionals and others to keep up.
Automation and the internet of things (IoT) are also showing their muzzles in the outsourcing world. Similar to virtual assistants and chatbots, automation technology cuts costs and increases production and efficiency. Rather than going offshore for inexpensive labor, companies are turning to more types of automation to slash labor expenses. Smart software provided by IoT is also a considerable investment at present. Almost 90% of enterprises are increasing or have increased their IoT budgets in 2019, reflecting the growing consumer demand for smart technology.
Finally, don’t forget about those progressive web apps (PWAs) corporations are gobbling up right now. Invented around 2015, PWAs offer smooth experiences to customers and increase engagement, interaction, and opt-in rates. As a result, corporations are investing, and that includes outsourcing business applications to ensure the customer leaves a site fully satisfied.
Outsourcing into the future
As technology and customer whims evolve, outsourcing does, too. This year has seen numerous changes to the business world that have far-reaching impacts. Reliance on the cloud is fostering new considerations and sparking further outsourcing to address them. Then there’s the world of AI, which is dipping its legs into the outsourcing environment as more companies realize its many perks. The good news, of course, is that our daily list of tasks is becoming infinitely smaller as outsourcing steps up to take a front-row seat.