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    1 Reply Latest reply on Apr 18, 2018 6:24 PM by moderator_lisa

    Volunteers Providing Free BPO Services in Early Stage of Our Business

    zulu247 Newbie

      My name is Sunny, and I’m a part-time teacher/part-time entrepreneur (if that term even make sense..) from China. English isn’t my native language but I absolutely love learning it (if anything I say sounds confusing grammar-wise or language-use-wise please let me know and I’ll try to use a different sentence to make it clear). About our business, recently my friend Molly and I started a multimedia editing studio out of my apartment, our long term goal is to build a business providing BPO (Business Process Outsource) services to clients based in English speaking countries such as the US, Canada, UK, Australia, New Zealand, etc. Well, we want to serve clients based in English speaking countries not only because we believe there is a huge need for BPO services in these countries, but also because we both love learning English and believe that in the process of doing this we’ll be able to improve our English gradually while having a wonderful time practicing/using the English that we’ve been constantly learning. What’s more, maybe we will even be able to make some awesome native English-speaking friends along the way.


      About our short term  goal, we would like to start building a foundation of our business with a couple of services that we are already familiar with, such as text, video, audio and image editing, with the help of volunteers that we have been blessed to have here locally. Our volunteers are mostly local college students here who are interested in practicing/improving their English while gaining some work experience, so they are happy to come in our studio once or twice a week to perform the services for free. And Molly and I also don’t expect to generate income from this business in the early stage, so we will not be charging clients service fees for the services that our volunteers perform at this time.


      Our thought-process is that by offering free BPO services to clients in the short term, we can hopefully build some really good relationships and gain some valuable experience while improving our systems (operations, team management, etc.), and once we have built a solid client base who are happy with our services and find them valuable, we will then start charging some service fees and hopefully most of our clients will continue to use our services if they think that they are worth the price. So this way we will actually be able to build a business eventually.


      In terms of the BPO services that we provide, right now we are starting out providing text, video, audio and image editing, but gradually we would like to expand our offerings into more BPO categories based on client needs, market situation as well as our passion and interests.


      More about text/video/audio and image editing, we have some prior experiences with these types of work and are familiar with many of the commonly used features in related software such as ABBYY FineReader (for Optical Character Recognition, or OCR), Sony Vegas Pro (for video editing), Adobe Audition (for audio editing) and Photoshop (for image editing).


      So for example, maybe you have some photos, pictures or image-based PDFs that have text in them and you want the text converted into digital format for easy editing and searching, we could help you achieve that by taking your photos, pictures or image-based PDFs, converting the text using OCR, and producing a Microsoft Word or text-based PDF document with the converted digital format of the text for each of your input picture, photo or image-based PDFs. For video editing, maybe you have some videos that you shot which you want to put on Youtube, and you already have an intro, outro, text captions or some still pictures that you previously made, we can help you put them together by inserting your intro/outro/text captions/still pictures in each of your videos based on your requirements (such as where to insert them, what video transitions to use between the clips, what volume level to adjust to, etc. ) and then export each video to a video format that you want with specified video resolutions, etc. An example of audio editing could be, let’s say you are a podcaster, and you have recorded some new podcast episodes, and you already have made an intro, an outro and maybe a few sound clips, we could help you mix in the intro, outro and sound clips into the newly recorded episodes, level the overall volume, apply noise reduction, then export the produced audio into a format that you prefer, such as mp3, and then insert tags into the audio, etc. Or maybe you have made or purchased some videos and you want to extract the audio from them to repurpose somewhere else, we could help you with that by taking the videos, extract the audio from each of them, apply some audio editing such as noise reduction, inserting clips, removing parts of the audio you don’t want, etc. For image editing, perhaps you have some images that come in a certain format but you want them converted into a different format, or you want some watermarks of your brand name or brand logo inserted into the images, or adjusting the lighting, color of the images, cropping the images, turning the images, changing the aspect ratio, etc., we could help you with those.


      In addition, if your needs are not mentioned in the above paragraph, but you can train us how to do it, we would be happy to learn from you and then perform the services for you based on the training that you give us.


      With everything being said so far, I want to candidly point out that there are some drawbacks of using our services. First of all, our turnaround time could be longer than what you would prefer, usually 4 – 7 days, because our volunteers are mostly college students who have classes to attend and homework to do, so they can only come in our studio once or twice a week to perform the services. So if you need the services done in an urgent matter, we probably won’t be the ideal service provider for that, however if your needs are not urgent, then we would be able to help you out.


      The second drawback of using our services is that we will not be able to perform services for you that require a high level of English, such as audio transcription, writing blog posts or other creative articles, etc. as English is not our native language.  However, we have a pretty good command of basic English and are able to perform basic BPO services, such as text, video, audio and image editing that I mentioned above based on your requirements.


      The third drawback associated with our services that I’d like to point out is about the content/theme of the work that we can take on, we will not provide services on adult, political or scary themes (such as horror movies, etc.), so if you have some video, audio, images etc. that are about such themes we would unfortunately not be able to help you out.


      The final drawback of using our services is that we will not be able to work on your files that are huge in size, such as high definition video files that are several Gigabytes in size for a single video, because our limited internet speed can not handle such huge file transfers. But for common files we are able to handle without problems using our current internet services.


      Well I guess that’s it! I hope that my English writing is good enough to make this post comprehensive and easy to understand without confusions, but if you guys find anything confusing language-wise or have any questions about our volunteer services that I failed to mention in this post, please definitely let me know and I’ll try my best to give a better explanation by editing this post or posting replies.


      Thank you guys for reaching this and hope you all have a great day!

        • Re: Volunteers Providing Free BPO Services in Early Stage of Our Business
          moderator_lisa Ranger

          Hello, Sunny. Welcome to the Small Business Community. Your business sounds like a very interesting and rewarding one, and your command of the English language is admirable. Thank you for sharing such a great description of the services your company will provide. Engaging student volunteers seems like a great way to increase potential rewards for everyone involved. I hope our members will be able to help you with any suggestions or insights you need as you grow your business.


          Please be sure to take a look around our forums and get a feel for our Purpose and Guidelines so you know what types of content are allowed and what posts are likely to be removed and why.  If you have questions or concerns, you may also post to our Community Feedback page.