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What Is Business Process Outsourcing (BPO)? | Speed Commerce

What Is Business Process Outsourcing (BPO)?

3PL Glossary > Business Process Outsourcing (BPO)

What Is Business Process Outsourcing (BPO)?

Business process outsourcing (BPO) is a strategic practice where a company contracts out certain non-core business functions or processes to external service providers. The outsourcing of these processes allows organizations to focus on their core competencies while gaining access to specialized expertise and cost efficiencies. BPO involves the delegation of tasks such as customer support, human resources, finance and accounting, IT services, and other operational functions to third-party service providers.

What Are the Commonly Outsourced BPO Roles and Responsibilities?

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The key rationale behind BPO is to enhance operational efficiency and flexibility. By outsourcing non-core functions, companies can benefit from the expertise and economies of scale offered by specialized service providers. This often leads to cost savings, improved service quality, and increased agility in responding to market dynamics. BPO providers, commonly located in countries with lower labor costs, can offer competitive pricing while maintaining high standards of service delivery.

There are two main types of BPO: back-office outsourcing and front-office outsourcing. Back-office outsourcing involves functions like data entry, accounting, and IT support, while front-office outsourcing encompasses customer-facing activities such as customer service, sales, and marketing. BPO has become a global industry, with companies leveraging the expertise of service providers across borders to optimize their operations and gain a competitive edge in the marketplace.


While a call center is one aspect of business process outsourcing (BPO), the two terms are not interchangeable. BPO encompasses a broader range of outsourced business functions beyond just call handling. BPO may include outsourcing processes related to customer support, data entry, finance, IT services, and more. A call center, on the other hand, specifically focuses on managing incoming and outgoing calls, handling customer inquiries, providing support, and conducting telemarketing activities. In essence, a BPO can involve various outsourcing services, and a call center is one specialized function within the broader spectrum of BPO offerings.

No, BPO can involve both offshore and onshore outsourcing. Companies may choose to outsource to service providers within their own country or internationally, depending on their specific needs and objectives.

No, businesses of various sizes can benefit from BPO. While larger corporations often leverage BPO for scale, smaller businesses can gain access to specialized services and cost efficiencies.

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