Invita is a brand that has grown from a division of BBK to a leading service provider that has created jobs for thousands of people. As they celebrate their 10th year anniversary, we sat down with Rahul Bhalla, Chief Executive of Invita to take a look back at how they have started and what they still hope to achieve.
How has Invita started and what are its initial product offerings?
Invita was initially a division within BBK. The management decided to turn the cost center into a profit center and hived off their call center division into a company called Invita. From the start, we always looked at the best ways of delivering service to our customers. Our tagline “In Touch, With Intelligence” has been the pillar of our delivery. In 2007, we were already a multimedia contact center using not just voice but chat and video to be in touch with customers. We were the first to use GPRS video calling with a leading telecom services provider and Chat service for a leading Islamic bank in Bahrain. As the world moves towards increased dependence on Social media, our Social Media Command Center helps customers listen in to what people have to say about their products and services on social media which is increasingly influencing consumer choices. We have grown from being just a Contact Center, to an IT services Company and a Training Center.
As a global service consultancy, what are the specific products that you currently offer to help develop companies’ competitive growth?
With increasing pressure on bottom lines, corporates look not just at cost reduction but also how to get the best out of their work force. The two areas that companies look at therefore are where to outsource to and where to get personnel trained – two areas of focus that Invita has put a lot of effort into developing as centers of excellence. Contrary to popular belief that companies only outsource non-essential functions, companies outsource important functions within their portfolio because there are third party companies that have the expertise to deliver the same service in a better fashion simply because they have made it their business to be the best at what they do. Over the past decade, Invita has developed protocols and processes that set them apart from others and this has resulted in happy and loyal customers – our first customer is still our customer even after 10 years. We continuously observe the global trends and align our services to create the best products for our clients. As a BPO, we were the first to launch 3G video support, Chat and more recently the Social Media Command Center.
Why is Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) becoming a need at these times?
BPO has been a need for decades, not just now. In these times, when the global economy is in the throes of recession and cost containment is the buzz word, the importance of BPOs is being highlighted. BPOs do things better not just cheaper. So more and more CXOs are looking at their operation to see where a process within their business could be outsourced at a lower cost. Areas like contact centers, payroll, claims processing and in the case of smaller businesses HR, accounts and others are areas where outsourcing can bring process efficiency and cost control. BPOs also help the economy by creating jobs which we have done brilliantly over the last years. We have supported, trained, and recruited over 3000+ youth in Bahrain and with the support of Tamkeen and the Ministry of Labor we hope to achieve 5000+ by 2020. We are very proud to say that we are a company that is 90+% Bahrainized.
You are opening up a training center as part of your 10th year anniversary. Please share with us some details about this center.
As we have explained earlier, employee motivation and training are important in this day and age to bring the best out of the employee – increase their productivity. Our training center will focus on developing employee soft skills and leadership qualities. We deliver training in English and Arabic, and have tailor made course material in Arabic – this is very important specially when it comes to communication to prevent literal translations that can often change the meaning of what is being said. We do things intelligently and differently. Our expertise comes from working with various industries over the last decade. We have hired people who were fresh graduates but have graduated to become managers in their own companies. A lot of banks have hired our people, so we thought why not just train people from these banks and get into another line of business. This is the start of our training center.
Your website revealed that there are exciting plans to expand operations throughout the GCC region. Can you give us more details on what these are?
Our brand name is derived from two words Invigorate and Vitalit and this reflects in our brand name and the youthful colors of the logo. Through our 400+ employees we deliver with passion, spirit and intelligence and our new services that will be launched over the next year or so will also have a ‘fresh’ feel to them. We rely heavily on technology to bring about a new customer experience. We currently run a BPO in Kuwait operating in the same space as in Bahrain and in Dubai through an associate company to service our Bahraini clients’. We are close to a tie up in KSA.
We will expand into other areas in order to diversify our income stream and look at long term contracts. A key focus is in Process outsourcing in the BFSI (Banking, Financial Services and Insurance) industry. We will disclose details when we are closer to our launch date which will be within the next 6 months.