BPO Workforce Training – Introduction
The success of the BPO firm requires that it focus a lot of attention on the acquisition and development of skilled human resources who are not only adept in technical skills but also in soft skills. The very nature of the BPO business poses interesting challenges to a BPO worker which in turn impacts the training programs. To elaborate this point, consider a typical BPO service such as IT technical-support. It typically requires skills in rapid trouble-shooting and problem-solving in specific, well defined areas of hardware, software, networking and operating systems. In addition to technical skills, IT technical-support personnel also often need to interact directly with their client’s customers on a one-on-one basis through the telephone or instant-messaging systems, and thus need to possess what is commonly referred to as soft skills. “Soft skills” has been defined as “the cluster of personality traits, social graces, language skills, friendliness, and optimism that mark each of us in varying degrees”
Given these unique and sometimes contradictory characteristics of a typical BPO job, several interesting questions arise:
- How are workers trained in Indian BPOs?
- What is the curriculum adopted?
- How does the BPO training regimen cope with rapidly changing requirements of the BPO industry?
- How are training programs assessed?
- How are the trainers trained?
Starting from these questions, there are two broad areas that can be addressed, namely technical training and soft skills training. The two areas are equally important but mutually exclusive in nature,