Friday, December 19, 2008

Tips to do well the Psychometric tests in BPO interviews

A)Ensure that you don't go for the test on an empty stomach. Research shows that skipping meals reduces intellectual performance.

B)Stay calm; anxiety can affect your performance adversely.

C)Psychometric tests normally need no prior preparation. In case you have an idea of the type of test to expect, for example, numerical ability, then you might practice a few sums before you appear for the actual test.

D)Try to maintain both speed and accuracy, especially for timed tests.

E)You will almost certainly be taken through a practice or instruction stage before the test begins. This will give you the chance to try one or two practice items, before the actual test.

F)Listen carefully to the instructions given by the test administrator.

G)Get the most out of the examples or practice session. Do not hesitate to ask questions.

H)If you need a little more time for practice, ask for it.

Latest business process outsourcing (BPO) building offers flexibility and efficiency for the workers in field

This latest building from #1 business process outsourcing (BPO) office buildings developer Megaworld Corporation is guaranteed to offer the best location in Metro Manila when it comes to prestige, expenditure and overall client satisfaction. 1880 Eastwood Ave. is tailor-made to suit all kinds of BPO firms. It is operational 24 hours a day, seven days a week, has full back-up power, and the latest telecommunications services, guaranteeing consistent high-bandwidth and fiber optic cables.

The building has six elevators, and service facilities set up on both ends of the office floors. This means that all operations are conducted at the heart of the building, maximizing space and increasing efficiency. “We are offering the best real estate solutions for BPO companies,” Megaworld FVP for business development Jericho Go stated. 1880 Eastwood Ave.’s adaptable design can accommodate the shifting schedule specifications of various BPO clients.

BPOs have the option to lease the amount of space best suited to their needs and once they decide to expand, they have the option to lease adjacent spaces or floors as they see fit, creating wide and easy to manage spaces. Also, the building is adjacent to 1800 Eastwood Ave, and locators have the option to combine office space in both buildings.

Financial requirements are also taken into consideration. According to Go, “Megaworld allows for maximum flexibility in the negotiations of the terms of the lease that will allow BPO companies to remain competitive in the global marketplace.” Ultimately, the lease costs in Eastwood City over a span of 5-10 years will still offer significant savings, as opposed to lease costs in Makati given the same length of time.

Found in the center of a bustling and modern 24/7 community, the advantageous position of 1880 Eastwood Ave. offers modern amenities and entertainment along with a natural and relaxing environment.

Interview tips for attending BPO's.

The first will be the written test.What is a written test? Ask this question and there would be a hundred different response to it. More often than not, a written test at any interview is one or, the other form of a Psychometric test.

Now what is a Psychometric test?
The term 'psychometric' comes from two Greek words and, literally translated, means 'measurement of the mind'. The term 'measurement', as used here, does not mean that mental abilities or, qualities can be measured in the same way as physical quantities. Instead it infers that psychometrics involves a 'scientific' approach to the assessment of these abilities and qualities.Be as natural as possible and answer truly. Psychometric tests (especially the personality tests) have an in-built mechanism of detecting false responses. This is done by means of differently worded statements, which measure candidates on the same feature. So a false response from you would mean the end of the interview for you.
Psychometric tests are a useful aide in interviews. So do not look at it as an obstacle, rather treat it as a positive towards understanding your personality.

Psychometric tests cover areas ranging from intelligence, aptitude, values, emotions, motivation, personality, etc.
They have been created for three main reasons:
1.It is easier to get information from candidates through tests rather than through interviews/ counselling.
2.The information from these tests is more scientifically consistent than the information from an interview/ counselling session.
3.It is harder to get away with lying on a test than in an interview/ counselling session.

Things to keep in mind -

a.Psychometric tests generally have no 'right' or 'wrong' answers.
b.Your answer to any question should be the first response that comes to your mind.
c.Be honest with your answers and give answers that you feel describes you the best.

2008- A crucial year for the BPO industry in history

With the slowdown in the US economy, a strong rupee and questions over extension of the Software Technology Parks (STP) scheme looming large, 2008 will be a crucial year for the Indian BPO industry. While players and analysts agree the troubled American economy is unlikely to have a significant impact on the industry, the decision on STP-extension closer home is seen as a clincher.

Analyst firm Forrester has predicted that the US technology economy will flirt with recession but will post another decent growth year in 2008. “The US economy is expected to be weak in the first quarter of next year but will be stronger as the year progresses,” it said.

It’s the extension of the STP tax holiday, which expires in 2009, that tops the industry’s wish-list this year. “STP extension is important for India to remain competitive on the global platform where China and Philippines are offering 10-year tax holidays. Whether the tax holiday is extended or not will have a decisive impact on the BPO industry,” said Quatrro BPO Solutions managing director Raman Roy.

While it battles such issues, the industry is looking forward to some consolidation and heightened merger & acquisition (M&A) activity in 2008. “Captives, which is how this industry got started, are going to become rarer next year,” adds Mr Roy. While clarity on the Citi captive sale is expected to emerge next year, Aviva’s offshoring centres, too, are on the block.

Analysts also see greater investor interest, due to more realistic valuations. “One can expect greater interest among private equity (PE) firms to invest in BPO/ KPO firms. After an upbeat 2007 where valuations were a bit on the higher side, 2008 will bring more realistic valuations, giving a boost to consolidation,” says offshoring advisory firm Tholons president Pradeep Mukherji. The year 2008 assumes greater importance as the US goes to polls. While outsourcing has already become an election issue, more anti-outsourcing rhetoric is expected as the race hots up. “Wait till the first quarter of 2008 and the rhetoric against job-loss and outsourcing would gain ground to gain votes,” says US India Business Alliance vice-chairman Abhi Shah.

However, players think the impact would be insignificant. “Considering the recession in US, offshoring is an imperative and hence, anti-outsourcing rhetoric won’t have much impact. BPOs in India are going to benefit from the global credit crunch as companies will resort to more offshoring to minimise impact on falling margins,” said HCL BPO chief exec Ranjit Narsimhan. Adds ExlService Holdings president & COO Rohit Kapoor, “It’s expected that banks and other financial institutions will downsize staff in the first half of 2008. After the restructuring, these institutions will start outsourcing their back-office work to cut costs.”

The BPO industry could see some sobering in salary hikes in 2008. “Salary increases won’t be as dramatic as last couple of years. We expect a 9-12% wage hike, rather than a 15-17% hike as in the past. Also, we expect more and more companies to weave in the variable component into contracts at all levels,”

NASSCOM-EVEREST India BPO Study ‘Roadmap 2012 - capitalizing on the expanding BPO landscape’- Report

NASSCOM, the premier trade body and ‘voice’ of the Indian IT-BPO industry, along with Everest Group, a global strategy consulting firm, today released the findings of the landmark study on India’s BPO industry, titled, NASSCOM-Everest India BPO Study - Roadmap 2012 - Capitalizing on the Expanding BPO Landscape. This study provides a comprehensive fact-based view of capabilities of sector, opportunities and growth imperatives for the Indian BPO industry and its key stakeholders. It sets the stage for the next wave of the industry’s growth.

Speaking at the launch, Som Mittal, President, NASSCOM said, “The Indian BPO sector has evolved tremendously since its inception, not only in its size but also in terms of maturity - service lines, service delivery capability and footprint. This US$ 11 billion industry today employs more that 700,000 people across 25 countries and accounts for approximately 40 percent of the global BPO offshore market thereby creating huge job opportunities and impacting the economy. The future potential is even larger. This study not only estimates the opportunity ahead but also lays down specific agenda for all stakeholders to help achieve this.”

Gaurav Gupta, Country Head, Everest Group added, “Though the initial focus was on moving activities regarded as non-core in order to cut costs, today an increasing number of buyers are showing the confidence to pursue complex global sourcing and transformational programmes with offshore providers, including third-parties and captives. This confidence reflects in the Indian BPO industry’s rapidly evolving capabilities and an exciting future for its stakeholders.”

The NASSCOM-Everest study presents a detailed, bottom-up analysis of the Indian BPO industry and perspectives from constituents including buyers, suppliers and captive BPO organizations. The effort covered over 60 percent of the Indian BPO market, with detailed findings and opportunity assessments in a variety if industries and functions. Adds Gaurav Gupta, “the report indicates a possible target of US$50 billion by 2012 for the Indian BPO industry. This reflects a 5-fold growth over the next five years and can create up over 2 million direct jobs in India.”

Raman Roy, Chairman and Managing Director, Quatrro said “The right choices by stakeholders of the Indian BPO industry will decide and impact this potential five-fold growth. Less than 5 percent of the total opportunity has been tapped till now, which is indicative of the enormous growth potential available to the industry. While the aspired target is aggressive – it is definitely achievable, and will bring huge payoffs to India’s economy, employment and development.”

The report outlines the need for significant collaboration between the industry, government and other stakeholders on a range of initiatives including education, infrastructure, country-competitiveness, and domestic BPO. Nikhil Rajpal, Global Services Practice Head, Everest Group, said “capturing the true benefits of this opportunity will require significant change to how buyers and suppliers operate in an increasingly competitive market for global services. The government will need to actively support and partner with the industry to ensure that India does not lose out on the opportunity to add up to 2.5% to its GDP by 2012.”

From a talent perspective, while the number of people required to capture a five-fold growth are available, there may be a requirement of employable talent, of which approximately 50 percent of the additional talent requirements will have to be met from Tier 2 and 3 cities in India, necessitating the creation of physical and social infrastructure in these cities.

BPO- Will China overtakes India as world fave....???

India's dominance as a low-cost outsourcing destination seems to be on the decline, with countries like China, Morocco and Hungary fast emerging as the preferred choices by IT services providers, a recent study says.

Focused on UK's top IT service providers, a study by Pierre Audoin Consultants (PAC) showed that China, Morocco and Hungary are the new locations of choice to set up offshore sourcing centres.

Pierre Audoin Consultants is a European market research and strategic consulting firm for Software and IT Services Industry (SITSI).

According to the study, since the beginning of January 2007, UK's 20 largest IT services suppliers have opened 21 new global delivery centres. However, of these only two are were located in India. Four such centres were set up in China, while Eastern Europe and Morocco had three each, the study added.

"India's position as the premier low-cost IT sourcing centre is not under serious threat in the near term. But what we are seeing is vendors (are) looking to reduce theirreliability on India's heated labour market...," Nick Mayes, a senior consultant at PAC, said in a statement

The 20 largest IT services vendors in the UK are based on rankings in PACs annual SITSI report. These include EDS, IBM, Fujitsu, Capgemini, Capita, Accenture, CSC, HP, BT Global Services and LogicaCMG.

The two new facilities launched in India were both outside the traditional hot spots of Bangalore and Mumbai, IBMs new centre has been set up in Noida, while Tata Consultancy Services' expansion site has come up at Hyderabad.

10 ideas For getting money Paid Surveys

1. Sign up to as many as survey sites you can, because although they pay small, if you save the pennies, the pounds will look after themselves.

2. Get a separate email address because you will got loads of emails (no spam for me yet surprisingly enough) and you don’t want to lose that invitation to tea from your mum in amongst all your survey stuff.

3. Get a Paypal account - I think it will make getting paid easier and you’ll able to keep track of all that cash that comes in. OK, you’ll be able to see when you reach a tenner.

4. Be honest in your replies. Don’t create multiple profiles like a prat.

5. Be creative in your answers when you have the chance - it makes it much more interesting.

5. Don’t give up your day job.

6. Do it because you’re primarily interested in making some extra money, but also because you want to have an opinion that is heard and occasionally you may even get a chance to test some product or other Like nose tweezers.

7. NEVER EVER pay for any of these Survey sites over the web. My opinion is that if you do, you deserved to have your ID theft, Nicked, Stolen. Which I can imagine is a real bugger.

8. Check your email regularly and do the surveys you receive asap. From what I’ve read of other people’s sites, the more reliable you are, the more surveys you’ll get, and the more times you’ll be able to take your loved one out for a nice meal.

9. Get roboform to fill out all the registration forms. Otherwise it can a bit dull when you’re asked if you have pets for the 50th time. Also use the same user id and password - it just makes life easier.

10. Keep records, of what surveys you’ve done, since I’ve also heard that some are a little less willing than others to pay out.

Don’t Insult BPO Workers -Report

I’m a little tired of people equating BPO with the slave trade, and BPO workers with coolies. Take this article, for instance, which cites “the first major study of labour practices in Indian call centres,” and compares them with “Roman slave ships.” That is a ridiculous analogy, and it insults the people who work in BPO companies, who do so out of their own free will. They are not forced into taking up those jobs, and they do so presumably because they find it better than all the alternatives. They are aware of the working conditions that will be offered to them, and they can check out any time they want. Are these critics implying that BPO workers have made the wrong choices, and that they know better? This kind of condescending, self-righteous mindset is, sadly, rather too prevalent these days.When I was in college, in the early 1990s, it was unheard of for a graduate to get a job without having any additional qualifications. Today, an English-speaking graduate in any major city of India can easily find employment, contrary to a decade ago. The choices for young people have expanded, and that is a fantastic thing. It is a pity that there are still regressive people around who, instead of wanting to expand those choices further, bemoan the improvements that have taken place. Ivory towers are a perfect environment for self-delusion.

BPO companies show the sector has been quite well in its performances

The latest quarterly results of the BPO companies show the sector has been quite resilient in the face of multiple challenges: strengthening rupee, subprime problems and a possible demand slowdown in the US. However, high attrition rates, in excess of 50% in some cases, continue to be a serious concern for the industry. The listed BPOs that are delivering services primarily from India — Genpact, WNS, EXL and Firstsource — have notched up good sequential and year-on-year growth in revenue.

The bottom line, too, has grown well except in the case of WNS, which has taken a one-time hit due to its client mortgage lender First Magnus Financial Corporation going bankrupt. The BPO companies have managed to contain the currency risks largely through hedging. Genpact, for instance, is substantially hedged for its rupee costs for 2008 and 2009.

Geographical diversification has helped as well. Firstsource now has a better revenue split with the share of the US and UK coming down to 45% and 42% respectively, and that of India going up sharply to 13.2%. Most companies in the sector have even managed to improve operating margins.

50% BPO staffers smoke regularly- Report

A stressed-out youngster who works odd hours and is addicted to his cigarette. If that's your image of a BPO employee, it may not be too way off. "Smoking is common in BPOs," say doctors from cancer hub, Tata Memorial Hospital, who have recently launched an ambitious study to track the tobacco consumption patterns in four BPOs in the city.

The two-year-long study was launched in August 2007 and preliminary findings showed that more than 50% of employees turned to cigarettes during work hours.Their concerns coincide with the growing emphasis on creating smoke-freenvironments, especially to keep youngsters away from passive smoke, which was the focus of the World Cancer Day observed on Monday.

While the BPOs in the study were no-smoking precincts, nothing stopped workers from taking a puff in their breaks, every two hours. So also, hookah bars nearby were also to blame for the addictive habit."Through the study, we are trying to understand why youngsters in BPOs who are generally educated and fall into the high income earning bracket take up smoking," said Dr Gauravi Mishra, consultant in preventive oncology at Tata Hospital.

As part of the study, doctors would also be initiating employees into behaviour therapy, pharmaco-therapy, education material and conducting focused group discussions to help workers kick the habit.But it's not just youngsters in BPOs we need to worry about. Head of Tata Hospital's preventive oncology, Dr S Shastri pointed out how school children, too, were being initiated into tobacco, many being just passive smokers. This was an area of concern as cancer is already among India's leading killers with 8 lakh Indians being diagnosed with cancer every year. "We should have zero-tolerance when it comes to tobacco exposure for school children. Passive smoking is particularly harmful to the metabolism of children and pregnant women," he said.

The statistics were alarming. The Global Youth Tobacco Survey showed that a stunning 13% of school children were using tobacco in some form and one in three students lived in homes where someone smoked. Another doctor pointed out how children were more harmed as they inhaled more air and in turn more carcinogens.Filmmaker and cancer survivor Anurag Basu joined the Tata doctors and Salaam Bombay Foundation in a smoke-free childhood campaign. He said, "When I was young, I thought it was macho to smoke. But looking back, I think one should be taught about the harmful effects of tobacco just as one is taught traffic rules, in school itself," he said. Basu was forced to quit smoking when he landed up in Tata hospital, years ago.

Call centers and business process outsourcing at now a days

Call centers and business process outsourcing providers are among industry sectors in India that are likely to cut more than 25% of their staffing soon, according to a report by a trade body.The Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM) said on Wednesday that companies in those sectors were faced with shrinking margins.

The prediction comes as the Diwali festival in India draws to a close. Companies postponed layoffs until the festival was over on humanitarian grounds, ASSOCHAM said.

Earlier this month, top Indian outsourcers like Infosys, Wipro and Tata Consultancy Services reported slower revenue and profit growth in the quarter to Sept. 30. These companies get most of their revenue from the U.S. and Europe, with a large number of their customers in the troubled banking and financial services sectors. (Listen to a podcast asking whether outsourcers can survive the down economy.)India's economy is also slowing down. The country's central bank, the Reserve Bank of India, last week cut its estimate for the country's gross domestic product growth for the fiscal year ending next March 31 to a range of 7.5% to 8%, from an earlier forecast of 8%.New hiring by India's IT and services outsourcing industry has slowed down, but companies are not yet considering large-scale cuts, according to analysts.

BPO opportunity seen in UK due to UK shortage because of " knowledged workers"

The current shortage of "knowledge workers" in the United Kingdom is good news for the country's outsourcing push in Europe.
A recent report from The Work Foundation, a London-based research and consultancy firm, said that the UK will need to attract more highly skilled workers from overseas for its high technology and "'knowledge intensive" industries.
The report's author noted that numbers are "relatively low," with only 167,000 high skilled workers in the country.
Reached for comment, Stephanie Weber, European IT Services Center (EITSC) business development manager, said UK companies have been suffering from the skills shortage for some time now.
According to the report, Filipinos are the third largest group of highly-skilled migrant workers, with a population of around 10,000. Indian nationals are by far the largest group with more than 45,000 followed by about 25,000 workers from the United States.
Next to the Philippines is South Africa (8,000) and Australia (6,500).
Under the previous work permit regime in the UK, 24 percent of highly skilled migrants were ICT professionals, 13 per cent were service managers and almost 10 percent in the healthcare sector.

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