Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Please mind your P's and Q's

"I me want busines. Have 20 peoples. We do anything for you. We doing data entry..we called people..we will try hardly for your project...please give us a chance"

If this above message shocks you, please do not be. This is the kind of mails you will receive from at least 20% of the BPO's when they ask for business. How many of you have received such mails which make no sense, have spelling mistakes, look like they have have been written by kindergarten students or even worse? Worse still, they come from so called CEO's, Managing Director's, Director's of the world. THIS IS THE STATE OF INDIAN BPO TODAY.

I do agree we need to clean the system from fraud clients, processes and agents. But honestly when will we start looking at ourselves? If you are a CEO of a firm, at least write your letters properly. Do you really expect to get business when you write atrocious english which make sense to no one or better still mean exactly the opposite of what you want to say? No wonder you end up paying hefty upfronts and then say you suffered a loss, cause people know you cannot get business yourself. Please remember your letter is the first quality check, a prospecting client will see and if they are as atrocious as the example I gave above, I can only imagine what you will work quality will be.

So next time, please try and keep the following in mind when you write letters :

1. Stop transliterating.
2. Use punctuation. There is a reason why people made them and why there is a difference between a sentence and a paragraph
3. Use a dictionary
4. Please show courtesy to the person you writing to. When I get such mails I feel insulted that you never even took the trouble, to write a proper letter to me.
5. Remember its never too late to learn. I still remember 6 months back someone in Linkedin pointed out a grammatical error I made in my sentence. I had written "Have a BPI having 65 seats" and he pointed out that there is no word as Having in english language. I still have not forgotten it and thank him for it.

Please remember when you send your mail or talk, you are representing your firm and first impression counts. So please please think before you write and more importantly at least be kind to the people who are reading it. They are on the verge of forgetting the English language thanks to such atrocious letters.

And lastly please remember its common courtesy to write a business letter professionally. It is never too late to start minding your P's and Q's

Friday, June 12, 2009

As offshore financial centers capitulate to US pressure, first steps are "crucial" to a successful tax evasion defense, says top attorney

The days when U. S. taxpayers could rely on offshore jurisdictions to stymie tax investigations by the IRS are long gone, says a criminal tax defense attorney.

"It no longer takes months or even years for U.S. authorities to obtain cooperation and tax/financial information "Under the Obama Administration, the IRS, Treasury, and Department of Justice are making offshore account holders a top priority. The UBS investigation is just the forefront of the enforcement wave – much more is coming."from foreign jurisdictions," said Robert Bernhoft, whose clients have included actor Wesley Snipes and 'Girls Gone Wild' video producer Joe Francis. "New treaty provisions and Tax Information Exchange Agreements have significantly expedited the process.

"If you have offshore involvements and get audited, you can no longer play the waiting game and see what leads the IRS will follow up. You need to take defensive action immediately."

TIEAs are among the "new weapons" the IRS has at its disposal to tackle "the complex world of offshore trusts and corporations, life insurance constructs, re-invoicing schemes, and wire transfer mechanisms", said Bernhoft.

"Previously, the IRS was limited to antiquated "letters rogatory" requests to foreign governments for banking and tax information – which took many months or even years to obtain."

Apart from formal mechanisms such as TIEAs, "European and Caribbean jurisdictions are increasingly responding to informal "counterpart" requests from the U.S. tax police for banking and tax information", he added.

Meanwhile, a relatively new IRS technique closer to home is to "attack through accountants", said Bernhoft.

"Increasingly, the IRS serves administrative summonses on accountants for the entire client file because they have no attorney-client privilege or confidentiality over documents and discussions," he said.

When such summonses are served, the manner and speed of the accountant's response can make or break a client's defense of a subsequent tax evasion charge.

"If accounting professionals involve criminal tax counsel in a case that has offshore involvements or indicia of tax fraud too late, the entire accounting file is exposed to the IRS, which can often debilitate an otherwise sound defense," said Bernhoft.

"More and more, accounting tax professionals are responding to so-called 'routine' audits by bringing criminal tax counsel into cases early on. I've spoken to the heads of several major accounting firms, and many are coordinating criminal tax counsel referrals through a senior risk management partner. They appreciate the significant liability they face if they make made disclosures during civil tax representation that lead to a criminal tax fraud referral."

Bernhoft said there are several Fifth Amendment issues to consider when deciding how to respond to a tax-related summons or subpoena, such as:

  • Can a corporation assert a Fifth Amendment objection to a summons or grand jury subpoena demanding tax/financial documents?;
  • If a summons directed to a corporation is really after the records of that corporation's sole shareholder, does that shareholder have standing to assert the Fifth Amendment with respect to the "corporate" summons?;
  • How should the targeted taxpayer respond to a "subterfuge" summons?; and
  • Do U.S. taxpayers involved with offshore entities and dealings have enforceable rights with respect to IRS' attempts to obtain tax/financial information from foreign jurisdictions?"

In instances where an investigation leads to a U. S. taxpayer being criminally charged with tax evasion, pre-trial disclosures must be handled with extreme care, said Bernhoft.

"In numerous cases, defendants have been convicted because they failed to consider how their pre-trial disclosures and admissions would affect the outcome," he said.

"It's absolutely critical to carefully evaluate the client's circumstances from the trial endgame perspective and make 'cooperation' decisions early in the investigation. With the new legal and practical landscape of IRS enforcement policy, unthinking disclosures can compromise a defense early on and lead to disastrous consequences for the targeted taxpayer."

He added: "I recently attended the American Bar Association's White Collar Fraud Conference and one of the presentations featured a panel of trial attorneys who had defended felony tax and conspiracy cases over the past year. In each case the defendants were convicted and a significant reason was mistakes of 'pre-trial' counsel – lawyers who represented the targets prior to indictment: they disclosed too much and talked too much. In turn, these disclosures and admissions greatly benefitted the government and hampered the defense's ability to mount a successful trial defense. If the pre-trial practitioners had viewed the investigation representation from the trial endgame, their clients might not have been convicted."

There's no doubt that taxpayers with offshore structures have more to fear from President Obama's than his predecessor, George W. Bush, said Bernhoft.

"The Obama Tax Enforcement Policy regarding "domestic" audits and collection proceedings that reveal offshore components is much harsher than under the Bush Administration," he said. "The IRS is now focusing on criminal investigation, indictment, and prosecution of these matters. Under Bush, the civil side of the agency was more likely to engage in discussions and negotiations.

"The highly-publicized developments regarding UBS holding "undisclosed" accounts for 50,000 U. S. Taxpayers is a harbinger of more investigations to come.

"Under the Obama Administration, the IRS, Treasury, and Department of Justice are making offshore account holders a top priority. The UBS investigation is just the forefront of the enforcement wave – much more is coming."



The dividing line between KPO and BPO is still very faded; some experts say that KPO is not different from BPO. It is only a kind of BPO. Says Karnik, "Broadly, KPO is a subset of BPO. It just occupies the higher end of the BPO spectrum."
In fact, KPO owes its existence to BPO. It is its natural progression. After reaping the benefits of outsourcing low-end processes to India, foreign companies are now trying their hands at outsourcing high-end processes to the country.
"KPO is the next step in the outsourcing pyramid. For instance, in a financial service BPO, data entry of invoices has been around for some time. But given the value-for-money Indian BPOs have shown, international companies are thinking, why not broaden the scope to include financial analysis?"
As in the words of Pavan Bagai, vice president EXL Service –
"Imagine unsorted data going through a black box and coming out as useful information. In KPOs the black box is your mind. There is no pre-defined process to reach a conclusion."
In BPOs there is a pre-defined way to solve a problem. BPOs will normally include transaction processing, setting up a bank account, selling an insurance policy, technical support, voice and email-based support.
The myth that Indian companies can only provide "software coolies" is soon changing to the reality of Indian companies being capable of almost anything, even rocket science!
India has a large pool of knowledge workers in various sectors ranging from Pharmacy, Medicine, Law, Biotechnology, Education & Training, Engineering, Analytics, Design & Animation, Research & Development, Paralegal Content and even Intelligence services that can be put to use in a KPO.
Low-end outsourcing services have an expected Cumulative Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 26% by 2010. In contrast, the global KPO market is poised for an expected CAGR of 46% by 2010. The following figure demonstrates the expected growth in the BPO and KPO markets over the next seven years.
It’s very evident from the about discussion that the KPOs are the next big thing about to happen in India.
But the way to becoming a strong KPO power is not very smooth. As KPO delivers high value to organizations by providing domain-based processes and business expertise rather than just process expertise.
These processes demand advanced analytical and specialized skill of knowledge workers that have domain experience to their credit. Therefore outsourcing of knowledge processes face more challenges than BPO (Business Process Outsourcing).
Some of the challenges involved in KPO will be maintaining higher quality standards, investment in KPO infrastructure, the lack of talent pool, requirement of higher level of control, confidentiality and enhanced risk management.
Comparing these challenges with the Indian IT and ITES service providers, it is not surprising that India has been ranked the most preferred KPO destination owing to the country's large talent pool, quality IT training, friendly government policies and low labor costs.

Source -

Recovery by year end; ITeS industry to grow by 15%

Recovery by year end; ITeS industry to grow by 15%
By BPOwatch India News Desk
June 12, 2009

The second half of the current year is expected to bring about the much awaited recovery of the global market according to IT body NASSCOM. The ITeS industry is expected to grow by 15% to reach $60 billion in revenue for FY 2009-10.

But the industry is also facing a challenge of aligning their strategies to emerging market needs, while facing increased competition and customer demands. “Today, we are facing big challenges in satisfying our clients,” said Srinivas Pingali, Executive Vice President, Quatrro at the Nasscom BPO summit in Bangalore.

The past year has witnessed a dramatic change in the expectations of the client. Customer are now looking for ways to achieve a greater level of business consistency when it comes to the delivery of services to customers and suppliers, adhering to compliance regulations, good corporate governance, as well as increasing time to market according to a report in D&A.

However, there is also an unprecedented opportunity for growth and profitability in the new market. There is an increased focus on end-to-end solutions model, in which providers can deliver significant value to customers and capture a larger share of work by balancing multiple complex processes simultaneously.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Indian employers unable to fill empty posts

Indian employers unable to fill empty posts - Anyone interested may share their views on this...

Although Indian companies are resorting to layoffs and freeze on fresh hiring, about 20 percent of employers in India are facing problems in filling vacancies, according to a survey by a global human resource consulting firm. The talent shortage doesn't affect all regions equally, the survey by Manpower Inc found, with the problem being far more acute in Taiwan and Romania - where 62 percent of companies are grappling with talent scarcity. The two countries are followed by Peru (56 percent), Japan (55 percent) and Australia (49 percent). The global average is 30 percent. India is affected to a lesser degree, with only about 20 percent of employers finding it difficult to fill up vacant positions, while Spain (8 percent) and Ireland (5 percent) are the least affected. "Despite global recession and the weakest employment outlook in decades, employers are nonetheless facing a scarcity of talent in critical areas," said manpower chairman and chief executive Jeffrey A. Joerres. "Even as they've generally reduced hiring, they are still looking to fill critical positions and are having trouble finding people who are the perfect fit," Joerres said. Added manpower India managing director Naresh Malhan: "Though the problem is comparatively less in India, there is certainly a disparity in between supply and demand." Referring to customers service professionals, Malhan told IANS: "Earlier not many companies had technical sales support. But now, a lot of industries are providing such services leading to a surge in demand for these kind of professionals." Some of the other skills in demand in India are engineers, traditional skill traders like plumbers, electricians, marketing executives and production management professionals. "Perhaps the most important inference to be drawn from this data in these uncertain times is that employers have to master a difficult balancing act in terms of talent management: They must contain costs for the short term without compromising their longer-term appeal to talented workers," said the survey report. "Sooner or later, global economic growth will resume, bringing additional strain to talent markets everywhere. And the increasing need for ever more refined skills will only intensify that strain. "It is imperative, therefore, that employers act now to design and implement talent strategies that help attract, retain and motivate the best possible workforce."

Source - SiliconIndia