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Home » Podcast » Industry Veteran Leads Next-Gen Outsourcing – with Jeff Blake of Satellite Office

Industry Veteran Leads Next-Gen Outsourcing – with Jeff Blake of Satellite Office

Industry Veteran Leads Next-Gen Outsourcing - with Jeff Blake of Satellite Office

In this week’s episode of the Outsource Accelerator Podcast, Derek speaks with Jeff Blake, COO of Satellite Office.

They discuss the acceleration of the offshoring industry, Jeff’s fondness for working closely with clients, and how the Philippines remains one of the best outsourcing destinations.

Introducing Satellite Office

Satellite Office is one of those names that’s been in the industry for a long time. It’s synonymous with the evolution of the outsourcing industry as it enters its 11th year.

Jeff shares that he’s been working in the BPO industry for 23 years and has been with the company for seven years. During his tenure in Satellite Office, it has continuously expanded, seeing a “30 – 40% growth year on year.”

According to the COO, Satellite Office is “not a traditional outsourcer.” True to their name, their main goal is to provide a satellite office for their clients in Manila. This is unlike traditional outsourcing or offshoring, which is mostly only used to delegate certain roles, tasks, or teams.

Jeff simplifies what they do, saying they “Provide [clients] with almost a consultant approach to help them grow their business offshore.”

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“We work very closely from a recruitment perspective, hiring dedicated employees for our clients.”

From there, it’s providing tremendous HR and back office support to the clients to help them best manage their teams in the Philippines.”

Acceleration of digital transformation and interest in offshoring

Jeff talks about how the COVID-19 pandemic impacted the BPO and offshoring industry in the past couple of years.

“In the Philippines, people were locked down, the economy was jilted, BPOs were just sort of wrangling with PEZA in terms of the right licensing, and it was kind of a lost period.”

Despite that, Jeff thinks that a lot of good came from that time. The world was forced to see that companies can let employees work remotely, and fast-paced digitalization is possible.

“We’ve been able to position that now [to clients] and say, you’ve been able to work from home. You’ve been able to do a lot of different remote working… So why not do that in the Philippines?”

“[The pandemic] was almost a global case study on remote work and how it can be beneficial to you as a company.”

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In addition, Jeff notes that things like dealing with PEZA and work-from-home adjustments seem better now. The COO recognized how the COVID-19 pandemic served as a catalyst for the further acceptance of offshoring.

“History’s really favored our business model… with the sort of increasing acceptance of remote work [and] people being forced to adopt remote work principles.

It’s just done wonders for the acceptance of global employment. And it’s probably accelerated things by five to ten years in that regard, which is fantastic.”

Working hand-in-hand with clients

The conversation was directed to Jeff’s experience in the call center industry and his shift to BPO. He shares that when he originally worked in the call center sector, he felt it was sometimes toxic when dealing with clients, and that can be tough.

Jeff was then presented with the chance to work for Satellite Office almost a decade ago. He reasons, “[The company’s] model really intrigued me. Because there’s a lot of call center people now that still don’t get the model.”

And I think the key to the model that we provide that’s very different is that we can build multifunctional teams for our clients.

It’s not just doing customer service, it’s not just building an IT team but we can work together very closely with the clients to create multidisciplinary teams.”

Jeff continues to talk about how the company’s approach offers a powerful value proposition. He proudly says, “It’s been great to have worked with [clients] at the beginning of their business. [We’re able to] watch them grow into multimillion, potentially hundreds of million-dollar businesses that we’ve been a big part of since day one.” 

Being proponents of the Philippine workforce

Transitioning to the topic of utilizing the Philippine workforce, Jeff comments, “I think the biggest ingredient to the Philippines and [its success] in terms of how the industry has grown throughout the year has been the people. The Filipino people are absolutely phenomenal to work with.”

Being proponents of the Philippine workforce
Being proponents of the Philippine workforce

The COO continues to praise Filipino workers, noting that they have a genuine desire to work hard and do a good job. He was awed at how the Filipino spirit and work ethic were able to elevate the outsourcing industry in the past two decades.

“I have a lot of countries reach out, whether it’s like Uzbekistan or Jordan or Sri Lanka. [These countries] just see the kind of the economic miracle, which is the Philippines or India to some extent, with massive outsourcing industries.”

Beyond call center work, the Philippines’ outsourcing talent pool has also deepened over the years. According to Jeff, Filipino workers now have the expertise to take on more complex and higher-value roles.

He mentions that Filipinos are now also asked to consult for the outsourcing sectors in the Dominican Republic, South Africa, and Fiji. “Watching [Filipino BPO workers’] career progressions has been phenomenal.”

The Philippine workforce’s skills, customer focus, cultural fit, and sheer size have made the country a go-to destination for global companies seeking offshore talent.

As the industry continues to grow, the Southeast Asian country’s labor force is well-positioned to take on increasingly sophisticated roles and drive the next phase of the country’s outsourcing success story.

Jeff concludes, “As new generations come in and as things continue to grow and evolve, you’re really going to be looking at that global workforce.

It’s by no stretch of the imagination for a company in Sioux Falls to be able to send jobs over here to the Philippines. And no one would have ever even thought about that ten years ago.”

Learn more about Satellite Office and its services by visiting its website.

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About Derek Gallimore

Derek Gallimore has been in business for 20 years, outsourcing for over eight years, and has been living in Manila (the heart of global outsourcing) since 2014. Derek is the founder and CEO of Outsource Accelerator, and is regarded as a leading expert on all things outsourcing.

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