HfS: Keshav's Kingdom

InsightaaS: When we hear the phrase 'batting practice' in March, our thoughts turn to the annual rite of baseball's spring training. But outsourcing is a global initiative, as we are reminded in this post: an interview of Keshav Murugesh of WNS Global services by Phil Fersht (founder and CEO of Horses for Sources, the award-winning outsourcing market analyst firm), which is conducted while Murugesh takes a break from his cricket batting practice. The interview provides intriguing insight into a firm that is generally below the radar, but which has reached the $500M revenue level by excelling in some  key outsourcing disciplines. Of particular interest are Murugesh's comments on automation, which (as HfS has repeatedly shown) is critical to profitable scale-up of outsourcing operations.

One of the recent phenomena of the BPO business over the last couple of years has been the growth and improvement of the mid-tier competitors to emerge as genuine rivals for major enterprise deals.  As many of these engagements become more specialized and complex, they need increased attention and focus from the provider — and, in many cases, buyers feel they are getting the red carpet treatment from some of the smaller pure-play providers.

When you look at the hyper growth of the ITO business over the last decade-plus, it was this "penetrate and radiate" strategy that  propelled the likes of Cognizant and TCS to the forefront of the IT services business.  Their clients would start with 20 FTEs, then that would increase to 100, then 300, then 1000…. and before you knew if they’d eaten the lunch of the HPs and IBMs and were already checking out the dessert menu.

So why is BPO any different?  The mega deals of pre-recession days are long-gone and we are now entering a phase of solid, steady industry growth in the 5-10% range.  These are the times the ambitious BPOs need to develop relationships with clients that will probably start small, but can snowball to have huge potential in the future, once they have figured out the right model and have learned to work together.

One such firm that rode the early BPO wave, survived the recession, and has just enjoyed its best ever year, where it almost reached the $500m revenue milestone and grew 8% (well above the industry average)… is WNS. Competitors hate it when WNS appears on the bake-off roster as they know how determined and competitive the firm is...

Read the entire post: http://www.horsesforsources.com/keshavs-kingdom_050614#more-15314