July 14, 2008
BPO Professionals Get Their Own Social Networking Space
By Sujata Dutta Sachdeva
NEW DELHI: It's the era of social networking groups. When everyone is either joining or starting a social networking group on the net these days, how could the young crowd from the Indian BPO sector be left behind? That's why BPO Voice, a new social networking group for people with a background in the BPO industry, is fast catching up in cyberspace.Formed a few months ago but opened for membership only last month, the group meant exclusively for BPO employees already has over 200 members. "The idea took shape when I started using some of the BPO communities on other networking sites," says Amit Saxena, the brain behind the latest online community.
"The more I used other networking sites, the more I realised how they could offer much more than what they were currently giving," says Saxena. "Most networking groups in Google, Yahoo or even Orkut, offer nothing more than a space for reuniting old friends and making new ones. In fact, most of what they have is either spam or recruitment drives or some mindless activity or games," explains Saxena.
Realising the potential, this former BPO employee saw the need to make use of the collective intelligence of BPO employees and create a platform to share their domain related expertise. Saxena and his band of friends, Ankush Wadhwa and Siddharth Jindal who joined him later, have their job cut out.
Besides improving the overall image of the BPO industry, they plan to create the biggest online resource for BPO professionals. They also want to help these professionals in sharing knowledge and opportunities among themselves on a common platform nationwide. What's more, the site also plans to take up studies and research on lifestyle and career related challenges through various surveys and polls.
While the number of hits and request for membership is increasing by the day, the site is careful to sieve through every request. "We are quite selective about membership. We go through each request and weed out irrelevant members and try our best to remain consistent in our quality in content and membership. There have been occasions when we have asked people to leave simply because their profile did not match our group," says Saxena.
Although they want the number of hits to go up, at this stage, they are not really concerned about adding membership. The focus is more on members who can dedicate a few hours over the next couple of months to create a high quality resource for BPO professionals. This self-funded site does not charge any membership fee from its members, but they are on the look out for investors. Once that is fixed, they plan to go beyond being just an online community.
BPO Voice also has plans to work on the ground with members meeting face-to-face. They plan to organise seminars, meets, road shows, career counselling sessions etc. As Saxena says, "We plan initiatives which may change the face of industry for good."
Change or not, if the network clicks it could help in building a healthy image of the Indian BPO professional worldwide.
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