Enterprise focus on digital, engineering and R&D will be growth drivers in 2020, but pandemic, other macroeconomic trends will dampen growth rate yet again.
Everest Group’s predictions that the global services market would witness slightly lower growth in 2019 than 2018 was right on the money. Revenue growth in 2019 was 5%-7% as compared to 6%-8% in 2018. The slower pace of growth can be largely attributed to the global macroeconomic slowdown, volatile currency fluctuations, and the tightening legal and regulatory landscape, with Brexit in the United Kingdom and the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) as two notable examples.
Looking ahead to 2020, these factors will continue to dampen growth even more, compounded by the disruptive impact of the coronavirus pandemic, apprehensions about an economic recession, trade conflicts between the U.S. and China, and decreased demand for traditional services due to digitalization and automation.
“We believe that the 2020 outlook for the services market remains uncertain,” said Parul Jain, practice director at Everest Group. “Enterprises will continue to rebalance portfolios to bring more critical pieces of work in-house, and leverage low-cost alternatives for non-core workstreams.”
Everest Group shares these findings in two recently published reports: Global Locations State of the Market 2020: Moving Forward in Turbulent Times and 2020 Location Predictions: Confronting the Impending Slowdown. Collectively, this research explores the nuances of the global services locations landscape and interprets locations-related developments and trends to help organizations design a best-fit locations portfolio strategy.
- Market activity for new center setups was high across regions, though new center setups grew at slower pace in 2019 over 2018.
- For new center setups, engineering/research and development (R&D) and IT services continue to experience the highest growth.
- Growth in Asia Pacific (APAC) locations is expected to be slower in 2020 than in the past few years due to the global macroeconomic climate, the impact of the coronavirus outbreak on Asian markets, and tightening laws in the data protection space.
- Growth in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) locations is expected to continue, albeit at a lower rate, given the region’s high-quality talent pool, geographical proximity to buyer locations and increasing leverage of digital technologies. Locations in Middle East and Africa (MEA) are likely to witness increased traction as companies look beyond the established delivery locations to unlock next wave of cost savings.
- Moderate growth is expected in the Americas, given increasing nearshoring. Multiple players are setting up new centers across Latin American locations to provide voice-support due to the time-zone advantages.
Also included in the Global Locations State of the Market report is Everest Group’s Locations PEAK Matrix®, which provides a comprehensive view of the attractiveness of global delivery locations (cities) in terms of cost, talent availability and risk. The most attractive service delivery locations are deemed by Everest Group to be “Leaders”; “Major Contenders” are considered moderately attractive in terms of cost-savings and have a sufficient talent pool to support mid-to large-sized centers; “Aspirants” typically have lower maturity but offer low cost of operations and considerable opportunity if players invest in talent development. Locations that witnessed significant new center set-up activity by leading Global In-house Centers (GICs) and third-party providers in the past year are dubbed “Star Performers.”
Highlights of Locations PEAK Matrix®
- Asia Pacific (APAC): Tier-1 locations in India maintain their “Leader” and “Star Performer” positions in English-language delivery functions. In India, tier-2 locations are being leveraged to a higher degree for access to an alternate talent market and higher cost-saving potential, especially for transactional business process services (BPS) and contact center work; however, large-scale delivery of complex functions such as digital services and engineering/R&D services continues to happen primarily from tier-1 cities. The Philippines are “Leader” for English-language contact centers, transactional BPS, and IT-ADM (application development and maintenance) functions.
- Europe, Middle East & Africa (EMEA): Poland is “Leader” in European-languages BPS and a “Major Contender” for most functions. Poland also maintains its position as a “Star Performer” for BPS functions. Ireland is being leveraged considerably for judgment-intensive functions and European-languages BPS. Ireland also continues to witness high growth in engineering/R&D and digital delivery (including analytics, artificial intelligence and machine learning).
- Americas: Argentina is “Leader” in bilingual BPS delivery and a “Major Contender” in other functions, such as IT-ADM, contact center and overall business processes. Costa Rica is “Leader” for bilingual BPS work and “Star Performer” for transactional and judgment-intensive BPS functions. Jamaica, Mexico and Guatemala maintain “Major Contender” positions for most functions.
***Download a complimentary abstract of “Global Locations State of the Market 2020: Moving Forward in Turbulent Times” here.***
About Everest Group
Everest Group is a consulting and research firm focused on strategic IT, business services, engineering services, and sourcing. Our clients include leading global enterprises, service providers, and investors. Through our research-informed insights and deep experience, we guide clients in their journeys to achieve heightened operational and financial performance, accelerated value delivery, and high-impact business outcomes. Details and in-depth content are available at http://www.everestgrp.com.