Work-at-Home Is Not a Continuity Plan – It’s a Business Model

5 minute read, posted on 05/19/2021, by VXI Marketing

VXI Work From Home

In a COVID era, customer service should not just be good; it must be excellent, and BPO services are more important now than ever. Additional services are demanded from various industries with increased customer complaints brought about by the pandemic on top of that. The global pandemic has coerced significant changes in the BPO sector, and one of which is the transition of workers from work-at-site to work-at-home. VXI easily adapted to these challenges while securing a future for its clients, customers, and employees.

Concurrently, BPOs have to adapt to changes while considering the wellness of the companies’ most important asset—their employees. Flexible schedules and remote work are some of the requirements to meet an effective business continuity plan. Aside from the Work-at-Home arrangement being an advantage to employees, researchers Anton Joseph and Paul Matthew also highlighted some of its benefits in general. Remote work and telecommuting are essential in providing employment generation opportunities, reduce carbon footprint, widen ICT application, extend technology access for the rural populations, and increase employee benefits. It leads to a more energy-saving environment without adversely impacting profit.

Frost & Sullivan estimates that there are 6-10 million (full and part-time) contact center agents globally, and in VXI alone, over 35,000 employees in 42 global locations. They deliver customer care in verticals like financial services, travel and hospitality, retail, healthcare, telecommunications, high tech, and government. Still, BPOs like VXI thrive to proactively and aggressively meet operational requirements with almost 70-80% of the BPO industry’s workforce working from home.

Business consulting firm Frost & Sullivan surveyed a dozen major outsources to know what measures the companies are doing to address Coronavirus’s threats. Here are six common approaches:

  • Proactive outreach to all employees and clients; proposing a plan of action that includes preventative measures, constant communication, and encouraging self-identification for anyone feeling unwell. During the first few days of the pandemic, VXI implemented a strict temperature check guideline that helps verify employees with possible COVID-19 indicators. Those with possible symptoms are immediately advised to quarantine, get tested, and get clearance before going back to work.
  • Aside from health checks and status surveys for employees, VXI was able to implement strict safety guidelines such as social distancing, facemasks worn at all times, and provided necessities like hand sanitizers on almost every corner, and a continuous supply of hand soap in bathrooms.
  • Elevating cleaning and sanitizing procedures at delivery sites—ensuring consistent cleaning of all facilities (US domestic, nearshore, and offshore). In VXI, disinfection and sanitation of all areas are done regularly.
  • Transitioning agents, lines of business, and even entire accounts to a Work-at-Home Agent (WAHA) model if necessary. VXI shifted 50% of agents to Work-at-Home and hybrid working environments in just a couple of weeks.
  • Real-time monitoring of the global situation and daily meetings with executive teams to review status and take immediate actions if necessary to restore critical business functions to normalcy.
  • Like in all of VXI’s global sites, many international site locations typically have clinics staffed by nurses and doctors.

Work-at-Home has been proven to increase productivity, performance, work satisfaction, and lower attrition rates even long before the pandemic in 2013. Recently, a study of 5th Talent concluded that 46% of agents prefer working full-time at home while 52% are leaning towards working in a blended office model.

That 52% still see the need for some physical contact and a blended work setup for a couple of reasons. While a bigger percentage of participants enjoy the perks of creating their sense of work-life balance remotely, common reasons why agents do not like working at home include lack of exposure to colleagues and limited collaboration.

VXI’s Passion for People and Productivity

Amidst the pandemic, VXI Global Solutions sustain its day-to-night operation while following safety protocols with the top three important priorities in mind: employee health, business continuity, and strategic long-term support. The company shifted employees to Work-at-Home and hybrid working environments, and protocols and safety measures were observed for those working on-site with the 10-Point Safety Plan.

This 2021, “A Dose of Hope”, a trilateral partnership with the Philippine government, biopharmaceutical company AstraZeneca, and leading private sectors, aims to provide free COVID vaccination to all its PH-based employees after its launch last January. Moreover, remote work opportunities are still available across 43 locations of VXI amidst the status quo.

As VXI provides an exemplary service experience aimed towards more satisfied customers and generating higher revenue, the company also never fails to exercise compassion and security for its people.

The Future of Work in the “New Normal”

While the return of workplaces to the new normal and brick-and-mortar centers is in slow transition, employees and companies must already see a vision of the possible new work dynamics in the future. Are we expecting a stricter work environment? Or is it going to be more flexible and enticing?

As workforces transform into an enhanced ‘business-as-usual’, the preparations and repercussions must be well-thought-out.  Forbes posted a recent article to show some guidance on what to embrace for the post-pandemic future.

  • Where we work will change
  • Safety and security will rise in importance
  • Business processes will have to adapt
  • New jobs and job functions will appear post-pandemic

Leaders and companies must revamp ways of working and implement better work processes moving forward stated on their business impact plans. Communication is also crucial in a setting where a virtual connection is more common than a physical one. Having a clear and open conversation between the owners, executives and the entire workforce must be practiced oftentimes to discuss shared business and career goals. New and emerging employment models and systems must also be provided to ensure smooth collaboration and efficiency.

In a modern world where a plague can put almost every trade at risk, it is better to always challenge the traditional approach and explore new models for businesses to survive. As VXI continues to prove in this case: resiliency is a strength, but preparedness is still essential.

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