The disruptive nature of business today and the market competition that ensues has organisations on their toes, in alert mode. Consequently, businesses are compelled to be more impactful and stay ahead of the game. Considerations include; strategic plan review, evaluation of corporate structure and delivery locations, and ways to operate more efficiently.
In terms of location, Dublin is a leading EU technology and financial services hub, housing the headquarters of global corporations, their service centres and outsourced support functions.
Post-Brexit preparations remain high on the agenda for global firms with UK operations. Key industries include financial services – banking, insurance, asset management, and business services. As firms evaluate an alternative EU base for relocating operations out of the UK—Ireland is in the spotlight again. With an economy growing at above-EU-average GDP levels, global investment and expansion will continue to drive Ireland’s growth.
In an effort to remain competitive, increase efficiencies, scale, or enter new markets, organisations look for opportunities to diversify. Frequently, this involves moving core tasks or support functions to different locations for strategic purposes—and one method that can enable this—is outsourcing.
Demand for Foreign Language Skills
The range of employment opportunities with financial, technology and digital giants, and the vibrant culture in Dublin continues to attract a wealth of skilled talent fluent in a multitude of languages. Along with the quality and skills of an English-speaking workforce, the demand for multilingual talent intensifies. Organisations in Ireland and Europe need skilled staff, fluent in a variety of languages to service customers around the globe. There’s an increasing demand for German, French, Dutch and Nordics language speakers for multilingual customer support roles. Workers who speak foreign languages are highly sought-after in sales, IT support and customer services. Skill level requirements vary depending on the employer’s needs, ranging from entry-level to highly skilled roles.
A recent European Union (EU) survey conducted on adult education identified the percentage of language speakers in a variety of European countries. Significantly, the report noted 50.9% bilingual or multilingual speakers in Ireland and 34.6% in the UK.
EU Foreign Language Statistics:
- In 2016, more than 80% of the adult working-age population of the EU with a tertiary level of education knew at least one foreign language.
- In 2016, 24.8% of working-age adults in the EU who knew at least one foreign language reported that they knew their best-known foreign language at a proficient level.
Operating in a new territory
Moving operations to another country requires considerable planning in terms of business continuity. The transition period can be challenging due to a host of reasons from regulatory issues to securing office space. The resources required to develop or re-create a business unit can prove intensive when operating in a different territory.
In a survey named Biggest Challenges for Business in 2019 by Dublin Chamber of Commerce, out of 11 listed challenges noted by respondents—they identified the ability to attract and retain key staff as the biggest challenge facing firms.
Talent Attraction – Companies tirelessly compete for talent with the demand for skills in the technology and digital space, as well as the need for multilingual speakers fluent in languages like German, Mandarin and Arabic. When an organisation has a tight recruiting deadline, without an established in-house team on the ground, securing the best talent can be difficult. And the battle for talent is at an all-time high with EU unemployment rates at record lows.
Talent Retention – Research indicates developmental areas to lower attrition rates includes; employee experience, organisational culture, training and career development. Skills shortages, and employee turnover is forcing employers to think harder about their human resource strategies—and how to tackle the talent retention challenges in the modern, complex workplace.
66 percent of millennials expect to leave their organization by 2020. Glassdoor
78 percent of employees said they would remain longer with their employer if they saw a career path within the current organization. Mercer
Over one-fifth of employers cited a good work/life balance, such as flexible work options as the main reason employees stay at a company, followed by a good company culture.These non-monetary benefits contrast with Cpl’s latest employee survey in which 56% of respondents said they would value salary over flexibility.
As highlighted by the Cpl Insights report, clearly there is a disconnect between what employers and employees deem as the most attractive attributes of a role.
A bespoke managed solution designed for specific business functions could offer the capabilities to meet ambitious goals. For example, an organization may decide to outsource a business function in-country, from the U.S. to Europe, or from the UK to an EU country. Outsourcing a core part of the business requires careful assessment and evaluation of the performance and track record of the vendor—the industries they work with and the scope of work they deliver.
Key considerations for the vendor selection process
- Have they expertise to supply multilingual/ hard-to-source staff who meet quality requirements?
- What is their talent attraction and retention process?
- What quality/regulatory/ compliance standards do they adhere to?
- Will their technology infrastructure work for your business?
- What services do they support—recruiting, HR, sales, services etc.?
- How do they monitor and measure customer satisfaction?
- What is their reporting and governance process?
- How do they manage outsourcing partnerships in different countries?
- Where can they support delivery centres i.e. regional or international locations?
- What are their terms of agreement?
By partnering with a reliable, knowledgeable provider– outsourcing parts of the business can free up valuable time and resources to enable companies to innovate and focus on strategic goals.
For example, in the banking industry, outsourced partnerships may help to accelerate digital transformation, save costs and allow for reinvestment in innovation and growth.
Or, an organisation may choose to outsource their global service centres to serve customers in multiple languages, around the clock, instead of gathering the vast resources needed to recruit, manage and retain global teams.
A managed solutions provider who can swiftly deploy workforces in multiple countries and languages can support business continuity when relocation or new market entry is imminent. And likewise, a vendor with cross-functional expertise can help improve quality, reduce processing times, and deliver ongoing value to the business.
Furthermore, the ability to acquire key talent, improve operational efficiencies and aspire for business excellence are vital in preparation for the future of work.
Read about Cpl’s Future of Work Institute.