If you’re considering implementing an outsourced team in your business you need to conduct your own due diligence. A great way to do this is by speaking to an outsourcing provider’s employees. They have experience working in Australia and with teams abroad. You can get insights into how it all works and any challenges they’ve encountered as well.
In this blog we speak to one of Beepo’s Talent Managers, Beth McConnachy. Beth has a strong background in recruitment and she has worked across all aspects of searching, placing and training staff in various organisations. With a degree in Psychology she’s always had an interest in understanding and helping people.
Here’s a summary of my chat with Beth:
Take me through what your role is with Beepo and what a typical day looks like?
There is no typical day! We do a lot of video calling and working remotely with various technologies. At the moment I’m looking after final selections and process work around evaluating candidates, then rolling that out to the team in the Philippines. It also comes back to being a manager, sometimes I will spend a day dealing with issues that have been put in front of me and some days I spend my time speaking with clients.
How do you search and match talent for clients?
From a client’s perspective, I manage the job from start to finish within a set timeframe. We’ll start with a brief they have for a team member, then I start conducting interviews making sure I address their selection criteria. So, as I am managing this timeline, I am ensuring the final selection of candidates are right for the job and matching that back to our client’s brief.
Tell me about your approach to finding the best talent to match individual customer needs.
There are many aspects to that. When someone has a role they’re looking to fill, I will talk to them about the budget for the role and how to manage their team member with a plan. Most times I will speak with a client who has a certain skillset they require, or they will be doing some research around what’s possible. The first thing I like to do is talk through the types of tasks they need completed and begin to form the skillset from that. Then of course, we account for different personalities and make sure they’re a great fit for the organisation.
What it comes down to is delivering to the client’s brief - even if they are 100% on their criteria. At times a client may mention something off hand during our chat that they don’t realise is actually part of the skillset they require. Being able to present that to them within a team member is something I consider a key aspect of my approach. It’s really important for me to keep having those conversations. You get to look beyond what they're saying and read between the lines because sometimes people don't really know how to say exactly what they want. You pull that out and when you start looking at all these different candidates that's essentially what you're looking for.
It’s also important for me to showcase the talent that’s out there to the clients. A particular candidate may not be “the one” for the role but it’s important for us to be transparent and let our clients know what is possible.
Tell me about any differences you’ve found between your experiences in Australia (based on your background) and now working within the Philippines market.
It's been great because I find my team members in the Philippines to be extremely efficient! We definitely encourage outsourcing process driven tasks because it makes everything easy. But of course, there’s a wealth of different personalities; you can pretty much find anything you need. I think it’s really important to help clients understand that there are possibilities they may not have even thought of.
For example, one of our biggest clients started out with just one role with us for a team member who would travel across the globe doing some auditing at different offices. From there many different roles were born, so yes definitely, you can start with outsourcing process driven tasks but don’t limit yourself to that. The possibilities are endless.
Have there been any cultural differences or barriers you’ve found when matching your talent in the Philippines with your Australian client?
Of course, and we always provide best practice around those sorts of things. This is something that we have done for a very long time and I guess it's just really good communication like you should have with anybody. The differences have been more so around the types of miscommunications you can have with anyone. What I think is really good is getting someone to repeat the instructions back to you.
Honestly, they have a nice, friendly, beautiful culture. I’ve been around since February so of course most of my relationships in the Philippines have been remote. The team in the Philippines really help support my skill set. I have much more job satisfaction because I can do the tasks that I am good at, and I don't necessarily need to delegate anything because they just naturally fill those spaces. Things just naturally happen.
Would you say you're having the same experience that your clients would have because you have a team in the Philippines? So you have that firsthand knowledge of what their experience may possibly be like?
Agreed! And I think it’s really important that they ARE part of the team. The most successful offshore teams feel that they are a part of the team. It's really important because the best and most successful players are embedded in the organisation’s culture
Have you had any challenges with moving the process you’ve used in Australia to a virtual platform within a different culture? How have you addressed these challenges?
My biggest challenge, which I know a lot of our clients may identify with, has been relinquishing control. From a personal standpoint I come from a background where my success is based on me. I am aware of my KPI’s, I do everything I need to do to make that happen and I can do it myself from start to finish. Having a team overseas has been great for me because it has allowed me to stop, think about process change and how things can be done more effectively. You have this amazing team, so you invest in that team and once things start happening, it works!
What is your philosophy when it comes to matching clients with staff in the Philippines and how has that been implemented?
I’ve heard it said that, “it’s about the right person, doing the right tasks at the right price”. I wouldn’t say it is a philosophy as such, but I think that if you can match those three things you are good for success. And also technology is very important. We always want to be on the pulse of any changes in technology. As a result, we have invested a lot in sophisticated recruitment software and its various functionalities. We are gradually implementing this and I can already see the benefits in technology streamlining. And of course, getting the right person, doing the right task at the right price.
Any plans for the future as the Talent Manager at Beepo?
I definitely plan on becoming more proactive. I want to start taking more control regarding our service offering. Within the next quarter I plan on implementing quarterly service reviews for our biggest clients and anyone else who feels they will see the value in that. From there I would look to improve on any information we receive. Also, as I learn more about my clients and the talent they are looking for, I hope to create growth plans. These plans will be centred around when they’d like to see candidates and of course letting them know what we do and what is available. So definitely quarterly service reviews from a growth perspective to improve our service offering and a more streamlined approach.
Still have some questions?
You could use this list of 33 Questions To Ask Your Outsourcing Provider, to get more information from your provider!