VistaPrint’s Roger Williams recently spoke with Caribbean CRM Central to talk about the company’s captive design, sales and services centers in Bermuda and Jamaica. Roger is the General Manager of VistaPrint Jamaica Limited. About a quarter of the company’s 1,600 global workforce is based in the Caribbean. The talent pool in Jamaica has become one of the core attractions for VistaPrint.
Roger shares some insightful comments about the reason for VistaPrint’s commitment to developing a nearshore operations center. Follow this link to see the whole interview…
What is it about Jamaica, or specifically Montego Bay, that prompted VistaPrint to set up a service center here?
Williams: When VistaPrint looked into locations for a customer support and design center, there were many factors to consider. First the company needed a workforce that was knowledgeable and skilled in customer service and could also grow rapidly. VistaPrint also needed an area that was centrally located for communications with corporate offices and English speaking customers in North America and the United Kingdom. After looking over all possible locations, Jamaica proved to be the best location with the biggest talent pool when all factors were considered.
The call center industry has seen impressive growth in Jamaica over the last few years – do you struggle to find qualified job candidates?
Williams: Actually, no. As the industry in Jamaica has seen growth, we have seen the education level and quality of the call center employment candidates grow. One of our goals is to become an employer of choice in Jamaica and offer competitive compensation and benefit packages that we feel help us attract top-tier talent. We also have an organizational culture that speaks to respect, growth, collaboration, excellence and integrity. In fact, I have had candidates express to me their desire to join VistaPrint primarily because they want to be a part of that culture.
What do you think makes VistaPrint appealing as a place to work?
Williams: As I mentioned earlier, VistaPrint constantly strives to offer a compelling value proposition to employees. This includes a healthy and progressive culture, an opportunity to learn and grow, and competitive compensation and one of the highest quality benefits packages. Currently all full time employees are eligible for health and life insurance with accidental death reimbursement, gym discounts, a shuttle service to the office as well as free uniforms and beverage services at the office.
Employees receive a competitive salary along performance based bonuses. As the company continues to grow in Jamaica, VistaPrint will continue to re-evaluate the benefits package in relation to employee acquisition and retention.
To what degree do you struggle with turnover?
Williams: By nature, the call center industry has a high turnover rate due to the industry’s transient workforce. Many employees take a position as a summer job or are just looking for short term employment. Over the past year, VistaPrint has decreased the annual employee turnover rate by 30 percent and is constantly looking to lower the number. One of the ways that the company looks to be able to further lower the turnover rate is by building a new state-of-the-art facility in Montego Bay. The company is also constantly researching the best benefits for employees to help increase retention. Additionally, our continuous focus on trying to create opportunities to grow careers within the company has helped to reduce our turnover. For example, most of our quality assurance and help desk teams started with us in entry level roles and that is the case for several of our supervisors and one of our managers.
Can you tell us about your training programs and your focus on driving certifications for managers?
Williams: For our customer-facing employees, most of the training is done in-house and focused on customer service and product-knowledge for VistaPrint’s fast growing array of products and services. Over the last 18 months we have increased our focus on leadership development and to this end have contracted an accredited institution to provide a 27- hour Supervisory Management course that will now become mandatory for supervisors in the company.
What are your long term growth plans for Jamaica and the larger Caribbean/ Central America region?
Williams: We are very happy with our operations in Jamaica and the relationship that we have with Montego Bay and the Jamaican government. However as a public company, we do not disclose our plans for future ventures.