Business process outsourcing (BPO) is an emerging area of growth in the financial services sector that involves outsourcing of an entire business process – such as treasury, back office or transaction services. Given the increasingly competitive marketplace, BPO offers tremendous benefits to financial institutions in terms of reduced costs, enhanced performance and ability to access superior expertise and industry best practices, and devoting scarce human resources to core businesses.
Some of the prominent trends in financial services sector include:
• Shift from product-centric to customer-centric strategies.
• Increasing virtualization.
• Reducing margins and increasing focus on efficiency and cost cutting measures.
• Movement from back-office core banking functionality as a strategic differentiator to application integration
In light of these trends, finance BPO is becoming increasingly important in financial services and several BPO models are emerging in this sector. Some of the critical issues to be addressed in this regard include taxation, regulation, ownership structure and presence of a cultural fit.
There is a huge spectrum of outsourcing solutions ranging from transaction processing to credit underwriting that can be applied in the banking and financial service sectors. The end result of these outsourcing solutions will be leaner, faster, more flexible and ultimately more competitive financial service providers.
The banking and financial services sector is witnessing a concerted move towards business process outsourcing (BPO) as a strategic option. This industry is ideally suited for outsourcing, given large transaction volume, structured decision-making and reliance on rule-set processes. Outsourcing in this domain has shifted along the complexity and maturity spectrums from transaction processing to true business transformation. Corporations are progressively acknowledging the potential benefits from BPO in this segment and identifying road maps for process reengineering that will contribute to greater profitability.
Invoice factoring is the basic practice of selling invoices to financial factoring companies for the purpose of receiving money right away. Smaller companies often fall into the financial trap of not having available resources and therefore sell their invoices to financial agencies in order to gain working capital. This practice does not require the business to swallow more debt and in fact operates in an opposite manner. Small businesses that don’t utilize the financial tool of accounts receivable factoring acquire more debt by waiting for the accounts receivables to be paid.
Invoice factoring is typically used as a measure to avoid falling further into debt. Without this effective financial management tool many businesses have to adopt more loans or alternatively, put up more collateral for existing loans. Invoice factoring is available at a minimal fee, which makes it an attractive substitute to assuming more debt. In fact, accounts receivable factoring fees are usually set up by way of discount and these rates differ from individual company to company. The great advantage to this type of liquidation is that there are no interest fees to pay and the result is most often better profit margins.
There are many financial companies that offer invoice factoring services. The individual agencies will set up a company with the right set of accounts receivable factoring parameters. After the professionals from the invoice factoring agency assess the individual situation, they will set up the receivables to be factored and proceed accordingly.
Financial agencies that offer accounts receivable factoring are located worldwide and support every industry under the sun. Even truck drivers can sell their invoices to an invoice factoring financial service to free up capital fast. One of the most attractive aspects to an accounts receivable factoring agency is that they customize the service to each business’s individual requirements.
With the prevalence of social networking media, one must still take necessary precautions and keep in mind that not all websites are good for your business. You really need to take a look at the sites and determine who and where your audience is before creating your own business page. Here are the various types of websites out there to help you figure out which ones you really need:
· Niche Forums – these have pretty much any kind of company that you are involved with as members discussing about any topic you care about. Here, you can find people passionately talking about your particular market. However, it is important to know that they will likely be very vocal about negative feedback which of course can help you improve your products or services.
· Broad Based Discussion Sites – Examples of these are discussion forums that have been around for quite some time now. Do a Google search and see if you can find forums on your topic or go to Yahoo Groups and Google Groups to see who are talking about you.
· Traditional Social Networking – These include MySpace, Facebook, Twitter, and more, which are all good for traditional marketing.
· Social Media Submission – The most popular among all is Digg but there are social media sites for almost anything out there. At the very least, you can start by listening to what people are saying then you can respond and try to become a valuable resource on a topic.
Social marketing success is measured by the benefits of the marketing campaigns to the society rather than the financial gain or increase in sales. Social marketing seeks to educate the society on certain issues and suggesting solutions to societal problems, and not entirely promoting certain goods or services. Funds spent on social marketing cannot be recovered in financial terms, but in terms of making the lives of people better.
To ensure your social marketing success, it is important to define the aims of your campaign. What do you wish to gain from this marketing? A reduction in the number of motor accidents is increasing awareness of road safety regulations or any other. The aims must be specific enough and numeric values attached if possible; that is the only way to measure the success of the marketing successfully. For instance, the aim could be reducing road accidents by 15% by the end of the year, by doing this we can measure at the end of the year if this has been successful or not.
After defining the aims of the social marketing, you need to identify your audience. What age group should the audience encompass? Which media will be more appropriate in reaching them? The methods that will work for young people may not work for the elderly. If the audience is online, then the internet will do but if not, another method has to be found to get the message to them.
The approach to the marketing will depend on the audience. If the audiences are online and are part of social networking groups, then perhaps Facebook or twitter will be a good medium. If they love to watch photos, then you could create your campaigns as photos and tag them in. You could also use banner adverts and Google Adwords for the elderly internet users who are not part of social networking sites.
Keeping good records yourself, no matter how unpleasant it may seem, will minimize the costs of paying an accountant and allow you more control of your financial information and operations. Maintaining good records can also help you avoid headaches at tax time by keeping track of your receipts and other records throughout the year. This can help you remember the various transactions you made during the year so you can properly document and maximize your tax deductions.
Normally, tax records should be kept for three years, but some documents – records relating to a home purchase or sale, stock transactions, IRA and business or rental property – should be kept longer.
Good record keeping not only enables the IRS to evaluate your business activity through original and supporting documents, but it also gives you the information you need to properly manage and grow your business.
You can keep track of your business transactions by writing them down, usually in books such as journals or ledgers or by typing them into a computer software program. It’s best to choose a system that’s simple, yet can be changed to meet your needs in the future. An accounting system should show your income and expenses and can be easily understood, especially by you. If you have more than one business, it’s best to keep completely separate books for each type of business activity.
The two basic types of bookkeeping methods are single entry and double-entry systems. Whether you choose to keep a written ledger or use computer software, record only the information that needs to be documented.