Global Offshore and Nearshore Locations See Vast Improvement in Rankings in the 2023/24 GBS World Competitiveness Index: CX and Back Office
Apart from Egypt and South Africa, the Philippines, India, Malaysia, Mexico, and Poland perform well across all rankings.
The World Source Marketplace for Global Business Services (GBS.World) has released highlights of the 2023/24 GBS World Competitiveness Index and rankings drawn from extensive survey data from the Global Voice of the Buyer Survey.
A total of 380 interviews were conducted with global enterprise executives – many of whom outsource and offshore customer experience (CX) and back office services. These global buyers represented organizations in Australia, Canada, Europe, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States. The executives were asked to rank and rate each country that they outsource to, including service-level delivery across various key business process areas.
As such, the top countries across four global outsourcing regions were ranked according to their final scores. Additionally, the index ranked countries at a regional level, where each location was placed in three categories: outstanding, proficient, or capable.
India, the Philippines, South Africa, and Malaysia featured strongly among the top three rankings across the five key CX and back-office categories: customer lifecycle management/value customer support and service, customer sales and conversion, back office and digital contact communications.
Interestingly, the popular US nearshore location, Mexico, and the leading Eastern/Emerging Europe Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) and IT Outsourcing (ITO) hub, Poland, were consistently ranked among the top 10 delivery locations across all five categories. Mexico took top place for customer support and services, while Poland was rated as the best location for digital contact center communications.
Another remarkable insight into this year’s edition of the index is that Asia-Pacific (APAC) and Africa equally dominated the rankings, making a total of 15 appearances each among the top 10 across all five categories. This indicates Africa’s rise as the next frontier for outsourcing services, due to its large, educated youth population, competitive operating costs, rapidly improving ICT and physical infrastructure, and multilingual capabilities.
Although, Eastern/Emerging Europe was not too far behind, making 12 appearances among the top 10, which can be attributed to the region’s tech-savvy youth workforce, time-zone proximity, and sophisticated digital infrastructure.
Philippines Dethrones India for Back-Office Services
When comparing results from the 2021/22 index with the 2023/24 rankings, the Philippines was selected as the top global destination for back-office services, scoring 6.33 out of 8, overtaking India (6.05) for the top spot, which notched down to fifth place. Malaysia (6.22), Mexico (6.16), and South Africa (6.14) were placed second, third, and fourth respectively.
Global Back-office Services Combined Scores out of 8:
Back-office Services Regional Rankings for APAC:
As a leading global destination, the Philippines has also earned its place as a top destination for back-office services in the APAC region. Also merited for their global performance, Malaysia and India earned the status of “outstanding’’. Turkey is listed in this top category, due to its rapidly growing BPO sector. Sri Lanka, Bahrain, Bangladesh, and Fiji ranked as the most proficient countries in the APAC region.
South Africa Maintains First Place for Customer Lifecycle Management/Value
South Africa maintained the top spot for global customer lifecycle management/value delivery, scoring 6.74 out of 8 – a position it also held in the 2021/22 index and rankings.
Malaysia (6.62) narrowly missed the first-place ranking; however, compared to the 2021/22 edition of the Index, it moved from fourth to second place. Egypt (6.54) maintained its third place from the previous index, while Poland (6.26) shifted from sixth to fourth place. The Philippines (6.17), ranking fifth, dropped three spots compared to the previous index.
Global Customer Lifecycle Management/Value Services Combined Scores out of 8:
Mexico is the Leading Global Customer Service and Support Destination – but Africa Performs Well in the Rankings
Renowned nearshore location for North American enterprise buyers, Mexico (6.52) was recognized as a top country for global customer service and support services. Following closely behind was South Africa (6.44), keeping their second place ranking from 2021/22. India (6.37) replaced the Philippines (6.15) in third place (now ranking sixth), while Poland (6.2) and Malaysia (6.17) ranked fourth and fifth respectively.
Global Customer Service and Support Services Combined Scores out of 8:
However, Africa stole the show in this category, as three countries in the region appeared among the top 10. For potential buyers, operators and investors, South Africa earned the top position among the outstanding destinations in Africa for customer service and support services. Also noteworthy are Egypt (15%), Nigeria (13%), and Morocco (12%) – all recognized in the “outstanding” category.
Customer Service and Support Services Regional Rankings for Africa:
India is the World’s Top Seller
India is recognized as the top location for global customer sales and conversion services, scoring 6.38 out of 8. This category was dominated by the APAC and African regions, as the Philippines (6.22), Egypt (6.14) and South Africa (6.03) were among the top 5. Mexico (6.07) was also in the top 5.
Global Customer Sales and Conversion Services Combined Scores out of 8:
Eastern/Emerging Europe Showcases its Dominance in Digital Contact Communications
Three Eastern/Emerging European locations (Poland, Czechia, and Hungary) appeared among the top 10 for digital contact communications. Poland (6.61) made an emphatic improvement compared to the 2021/22 edition, moving from fourth place to taking the top spot in this year’s index. India (6.54) and Egypt (6.49) maintained their second- and third-place rankings respectively.
On the other hand, the Philippines (6.42) dropped from first to fourth place. Jamaica (6.29) overtook South Africa (6.13) for fifth place, shifting up from eighth place from the 2021/22 index.
Global Digital Contact Communications Services Combined Scores out of 8:
Digital Contact Communications Services Regional Rankings for Eastern/Emerging Europe:
Joining Poland as the highest-performing countries in Eastern/Emerging Europe for digital contact communications are Czechia, Hungary, and Romania, while Croatia, Bulgaria, Slovakia, and Serbia were identified as the most proficient.
Change is in the Air
This year’s results have indicated notable improvements not only across individual countries, but also across whole regions. Perceptions of traditional leaders and emerging locations have shifted considerably among global enterprise buyers.
Outside of APAC (which has the lowest costs for offshore services) Africa has not only emerged as one of the world’s most cost-effective regions but also a destination of quality GBS delivery. In this regard, the region has vastly improved its top-10 ranking appearances in the GBS World Competitiveness Index, from 10 representatives in 2021/22 to 15 in 2023/24.
GBS.World plans to release results from other segments in the index rankings – including Digital and ITO – opening more insights into the regional performances of top nearshore and offshore outsourcing locations.