RCOM to outsource customer care to Vertex in India

Reliance communications, which is an arm of the Anil Ambani led Reliance block, has struck a near $150 Million deal to the Indian unit of UK-based Vertex to outsource its call centre and shared services operations in an aggressive restructuring move aimed at exiting non-core businesses and reducing customer care support costs by at least a fifth.

The deal has outlined terms which ensures that Vertex will hire all its 5500 employees which were earlier involved in customer service within RCOM. This essentially will put them under Vertex payroll. As an added benefit to the firm, Vertex will not have to spend resources on training these agents.

This also shows that this step will essentially mean that RCOM will be left with roughly 40 percent less employees after the transfer to Vertex is complete.

Vertex will handle all premium voice processes and integrated back-office operations including mail and chat support for RCOM, these people added on condition of anonymity. The company’s Indian arm, Vertex Customer Solutions India, will set up two new facilities close to RCOM’s Dhirubhai Ambani Knowledge City (DAKC) complex near Mumbai to support RCOM’s call centre and shared services businesses, the people said.

Until these new facilities are ready, Vertex’s teams will directly support RCOM from DAKC during the transition. A majority of RCOM’s business process outsourcing teams operate from DAKC but a sizeable chunk of its shared services teams are scattered across India, primarily in Chandigarh, Delhi, Kolkata, Bangalore and Chennai. Some key shared services functions include billing, collections, administration, security and maintenance. RCOM declined to respond to ET’s queries on the deal while an email sent to Vertex also went unanswered till late Monday evening. A top RCOM official had last year told ET that the company’s BPO and shared services businesses “were highly inefficient and not adding any value to the company’s bottomline”.