If you’ve interest in the field of finance, then a career change from a generic BPO working profile to a specialized profile in a reputed financial KPO will be one of the best decisions you have ever made.
If you are already pondering over making this change and just need a slight push in the right direction, you have come to the right place.
In this article, we are going to:
- explain a bit about financial KPOs,
- enlist economic data highlighting the merit of this career switch, and
- enumerate the steps to make a smooth career change.
Let us begin.
Understanding the KPO Industry
Knowledge Process Outsourcing (KPO) is a subsidiary of BPO which involves core functions that might not give cost benefits to the primary company but helps in value addition. Processes managed through KPO are knowledge-based and specialized, such as a financial KPO.
Financial KPOs are engaged in capital market and retail market. In the capital markets, they offer services like client account services, KYC management, trade lifecycle management, reference data management, asset servicing, reconciliations, performance reporting and compliance, fund accounting and alternative investment support.
In retail banking, KPO solutions help a company to ace competition by adapting technology in dynamic market conditions. Some retail banking services include account approvals and setup, KYC offerings, dispute resolution, account management, customer services and collection, lending service operations, mailroom management, data management, remittance analysis and reporting, remittance MIS, card processing and origination, card transaction processing, interchange accounting, card chargebacks and dispute management.
Financial KPOs are gaining firm foothold due to the lack of qualified and skilled professionals in developed countries which is compelling companies to outsource finance processes. Secondly, a KPO is a skill-based profession, which can never go out of business, unlike the BPO industry which can easily suffer losses if developed nations decide against outsourcing.
A finance KPO professional draws higher salary than a BPO counterpart, of course, and the career graph has high learning curve but the vested efforts are worth it.
Economic Data Favoring Indian KPO Market
Before we go into detail about how to make the career transition from BPO to financial KPO, we want to enlighten you with certain economic factors to elaborate whether a career change from BPO to financial KPO will be beneficial for career growth or not.
Reputed and authoritative industry reports forecast strong economic currents in favor of the Indian KPO industry. Remember that 70% of the KPO global market share is dominated by India. Let us see and understand what major industry players predict.
According to eValueServe, between 2010 and 2015, the global KPO industry will grow at an annual rate of 24% and contribute 17 billion USD to the global economy. From 5.95 billion USD and 135,000 professionals in 2010, India will generate revenue of about 10 billion USD and hire 205,000 professionals by 2015. Here is a chart depicting the growth of the KPO industry in India from 2006 onwards.
Even through India faces competition from countries in Eastern Europe and Asia Pacific, the Indian market is expected to grow 20% annually and retain its dominant position.
According to ASSOCHAM estimate, the KPO industry will grow at 24% to 27% annually which is higher than the average of 15% to 17% of the last couple of years. Countries like Poland, Hungary, China, Russia and Philippines are strong emerging competitors.
In the revenue side, ASSOCHAM estimates that the Indian KPO market increased from 5.7 billion USD in 2010 to 10 billion USD in 2012 and paralleled with the estimated growth rate, the revenue will surpass 14 billion USD by 2015.
According to NASSCOM-CRISIL estimate, the KPO market will grow at 22.2% CAGR by 2015, rising from 2 billion USD in revenue in 2010 to 5.6 billion USD in 2015. Finance KPO services will contribute the largest market share at 32%, followed by 20% growth in data analytics, 19.5% growth in healthcare, 13% growth in retail and 13% growth in technology. Here is a graphical representation of KPO growth in India and global world.
The statistical evaluations, coupled with the advantageous position of India in the global KPO market in terms of availability of skilled manpower, low-cost outsourcing, marketing capabilities, domain knowledge and domain expertise of regulatory norms makes this the right time to switch from a generic BPO career to a specialized KPO career, especially financial KPO because it contributes to and occupies the largest market share in the Indian KPO market.
Further, whereupon the global economy crisis of 2008 had completely slowed down the KPO market in India, the KPO vendors presently are far better aware and prepared to handle such a scenario in the near future through statistically placed measures such as investment in new technologies, price reduction, improvement in skilled manpower and other viable options.
In the last section, we will show how to make the transition from BPO to financial KPO.
How to Switch Career from BPO to Financial KPO?
With the right skills, educational background and smart career changing strategy (example: acing interviews), you can smoothly transition from a BPO career to a career in financial KPO. There is no dearth of opportunities for the right candidate as there is somewhat an acute lack of skilled personnel to work in financial KPO.
On a side note, if you are based in or wish to migrate to Mumbai, Pune, Bangalore, Delhi, Noida, Gurgaon, Chennai and Hyderabad, check out this list of top 30 financial KPOs in India. You can apply to these KPOs once you are ready to make the career transition.
1) Educational Qualifications
Unlike a BPO job, you need specific educational qualification to enter financial KPOs. A simple graduation degree will not suffice. The foremost step is to get an MBA, CFA or CA degree from reputed institution.
2) Financial Skills
You need to possess a natural flair to understand and analyse finance. Solid analytical skills are prime criteria with any financial KPO. There should be a curiosity and interest to analyse and understand companies in detail.
You need to have strong fundamental valuation skills and clarity towards financial and quantitative concepts. You should have the ability to build financial models and a strong knowledge of MS Excel is a desired quality. Moreover, the finance professional should have working communication skills and the ability to write research reports.
If you don’t have any financial skills, acquire them first and then think of making the switch from BPO to financial KPO. Your finance education foundation and dogged practice will give you these skills.
Armed with educational degree and basic financial skills, you are now ready to make the switch. Mind you, it is not simple. Read on.
3) Getting Interview Calls
Clearly, campus interviews are not an option here. Neither will BPO experience help because you are moving to a completely new domain. Here is what you should do:
· Modify Resume:
A career switch is an important period of your life and since resumes are the first point-of-contact between you and the financial KPO establishment, the resume should clearly send the message that (a) you have strong inclination to join KPO industry and (b) you have necessary skills to fulfill the interest.
It’s like becoming a ‘fresher’ once again but with a cleverly crafted resume, you can ace this easily. Focus on strong points like why hiring you would be an advantage to the financial KPO. Once done, upload it to websites like Naukri.com and Monster.com for calls to come your way.
· Use Cold Calling and Emails
You need to approach financial KPO’s on your own. The list of financial KPO companies will help. Visit their websites and look for career options. Most of them advertise current openings on the website. If any profile suits your skills and educational background, drop them the resume with a concise opening letter, alluding to your work profile and the intention to make a career switch.
If current openings are not mentioned, you can still call up the financial KPO companies enquiring about vacant positions. This is called cold calling and its success rate is less, but if you want cold calling to be a success and get into a financial KPO of your choice, you should check out this course which teaches, in detail, all about cold calling as one of its modules and it has awesome success rate.
· Clearing Interviews
This is the crucial juncture. Clearing an interview where you have to convince the potential employer of the choice to change career and profile suitability for the new career option is no easy feat. ‘Why you want to change career’ will be the topmost question in the mind of every financial KPO employer.
The only way to clear it is to be honest. Talk about your BPO experience, your interest to join the financial KPO industry, what steps you took to ensure suitability in the new domain (educational experience) and the working experience acquired of financial knowledge (learning financial modeling etc). The interviewer will test your financial knowledge; be prepared for it. Keep yourself updated about financial and economic happenings within the country and globally.
The time is ripe to make the transition from a BPO job to a specialized financial KPO segment. Utilize it now.