When companies decide to send work offshore, cost seems to be the primary focus determining where the work goes. Peter Maquera, President and COO of SPI Servisoft, the software services division of SPI Technologies, believes there's a second element to consider. He says you have to optimize the skills match, too.
For example, many call center companies use the Philippines for their US customer care work because "the Philippines is the most Americanized of the Asian countries." He points out Americans have exerted an influence on Philippine culture since the days of the Spanish-American War in 1898. "Filipinos are more familiar with American culture," which is why they can handle orders or problems well.
On the other hand, Maquera reports the Indians, with their cool British deportment, are much better at collection calls.
He says the best places to send routine data entry work are China and Viet Nam; the goal is to use workers who don't speak English. He says they encode faster because they don't take time reading the English words. "All they have to do is just recognize characters," he explains.
SPI just opened an office in Mexico to do transaction processing. Mexico has two other benefits: it's in the same time zone as many American customers and it's close enough to visit for due diligence work.
SPI specializes in healthcare, legal, and publishing global content outsourcing. Currently the firm digitalizes over 50 million pages of content per year for its buyers.