Stockholm-Sweden based contact center outsourcing firm Transcom will be opening its first Latin American contact center in Bogotá, Colombia after a five year absence from the region. Slated to open in April, Transcom’s new country head Juan Rodrigo Hurtado says the center expects to employ 550 Colombians by the end of 2021 in a blend of on-premises and telework modalities.
Transcom previously had a center in Cali, Colombia serving clients in Spain until 2016, while the company’s primary focus was on European clients. n 2017 private equity firm Altor purchased the company in a $330 million USD buyout and began investing in the firm with a global strategy, including a strong push into North America.To that end, they brought in Atlanta-based Sitel veteran Donald Berryman as the firm’s new global Chief Commercial Officer.
“We were in Peru and we were in Chile, and all those markets supported offshore Spain, basically, and for some reason, the team at the time was totally dedicated to their own regions, and so we didn’t even sell nearshore English or Spanish from the U.S. into Colombia because it was managed by Spain,” said Berryman.
“We’ll be focusing, as Don mentioned, not only on US market share, but also on those formats where we have a lot of experience here in Colombia. We’ll be attentive the Spanish market from Spain and the U.S. market as well,” added Hurtado.
Transcom’s operations in Colombia will function as a hybrid telework and on-premises contact center, with agents hired initially from the metropolitan Bogotá area. Offices are located in the Calle 100 business district on Bogotá’s north side.
“One of the benefits we have coming into the market now post-Covid is that the tremendous work at home platform that we have—and even in the U.S. not everyone is fit for work at home or wants to, you know—I think there’s somewhere around 50 or 60 percent of the people that we interview that that can work from home and the others either because they need the socialization or they don’t have the right environment at home, and who want to use that same thing, but using this hybrid model that we start, the market is really going to make a big difference for us because we already know a lot of that: what works and what doesn’t work with work at home and then providing that ability for them to come into the facility one or two days a week”to socialize makes a big difference,” said Berryman.
The company initially wasn’t sure they were going to return to Colombia, but started from zero, considering all locations. “We used [contact center consultant] Peter Ryan to do some research for us looking at if we’re going to come back and enter the Latin market where is the best location? So we used Peter’s research, and we did a lot ourselves in looking at all the countries that are there, both in cost and availability of resources and most importantly, where customers want to go,” said Berryman.
“So one of the biggest demands coming from our existing clients was wanting to be in Colombia. Opening up the first of our locations in Latin America is really important to us to find the best management teams in place, and what we looked at when we narrowed it down between Colombia and Mexico was that we could hire the most experienced people because there’s the biggest availability of them in Bogota. We realized that it would be cheaper probably to start off in in a smaller city, unlike some of the bigger ones, and expand into them, but we figured we want to start with the best management team, the best location, the easiest to get to for a client and then expand into other cities once were established in Colombia, and so Juan decided after that research that Colombia was the best country for us to start.”
Interested candidates who wish to submit qualifications for Transcom opportunities in Colombia or elsewhere may do so by clicking here.