The rise of business process outsourcing (BPO) has become a promising solution for developing countries to tackle unemployment issues. BPO involves delegating specific departments, often call/contact/customer care centers, to external companies. This practice effectively helps companies reduce operational costs while generating employment opportunities and revenue for the outsourcing partner.

Currently, several countries have emerged as major outsourcing destinations, including India, China, the Philippines, and Kenya. However, the concept of outsourcing has sparked controversies, primarily revolving around two main concerns:

  1. Exporting Jobs: Critics argue that through business process outsourcing, companies are exporting jobs to foreign countries instead of creating employment opportunities domestically, thereby failing to address the unemployment problems within their own nations.

  2. Remuneration Issues: Another concern is the inadequate remuneration provided to employees working in outsourcing companies.

In Kenya, there are numerous call/contact centers engaged in outsourcing services for both local and international companies. Let's explore a few prominent outsourcing firms operating in Kenya:

  1. Horizon Contact Center: Horizon Contact Center is a well-established outsourcing company with a presence in several African countries. In addition to offering services like data capture, outbound/inbound customer care, and support for international companies, Horizon Contact Center also manages the customer care units of local telecommunications firms such as Orange Telkom Kenya and Yu Essar.

  2. KenCall: KenCall, one of the oldest outsourcing firms in Kenya, provides employment opportunities to a significant number of Kenyan youths. KenCall specializes in handling both inbound and outbound customer care services for local and foreign companies.

  3. Technobrain (formerly KenTech Data): Technobrain, previously known as KenTech Data, is a reputable outsourcing company that employs many Kenyans. It offers customer care services to both local and international companies, including Kenya Data Networks (KDN). Technobrain is also recognized for its excellence in providing ICT training courses.

  4. Spanco Ltd: Spanco Ltd, an Indian business process outsourcing firm, recently entered the Kenyan market. It manages the customer care unit for Bharti Airtel in various African countries, including Kenya.

  5. Aegis: Aegis previously handled the customer care unit for Yu Essar Kenya. However, they exited the Kenyan market due to a lack of contract renewal by Yu.

These outsourcing companies play a significant role in creating employment opportunities for Kenyans while assisting both local and international companies in delivering efficient customer care services. By partnering with these firms, companies can streamline their operations, reduce costs, and focus on their core competencies. The outsourcing industry in Kenya continues to evolve, contributing to the growth and development of the country's economy.