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After Graduation, What Next In Rural India?



How would you feel if you were given an opportunity to work in a village? For Arthi Varatharajan, it was a dream come true scenario. She is thrilled to be part of the Kollumangudi team of DesiCrew Solutions Limited. Kollumangudi is the first center that DesiCrew Solutions opened when they started in the year 2007 in the state of Tamil Nadu, India.

I was thrilled when I was told that I will have the opportunity to visit one of DesiCrews BPO centers in the villages. The day was set; 30th of October, 2017. It was a road trip to a centre in Tamil Nadu State. Apparently, on that day, there was a heavy downpour that made the ride bumpy. After six hours on the road, we finally arrived at Kollumangudi Centre where I met Arthi Varatharajan.

Arthi has worked with DesiCrew for four years having started out in July, 2013 immediately after her graduation. Two years after joining DesiCrew, she was promoted to be the digital operations team leader. Arthi is a perfect example of a lady that has been able to identify opportunities that reinforce her competence within the rural set-up.

She has been enjoying the benefits of working in a rural setting such as the low cost of living which enables her to save a good percentage of her salary. She has also improved her skills and increased her confidence by sticking to the bottom line of making the clients happy based on quality performance. Every day, she strives to learn as much as possible and to share her ideas with her teammates. This can include setting performance goals for everyone and working towards the achievement of the same.

Her face lights up when I ask her how working at DesiCrew has changed her life. At 25 years of age, she gets to go home everyday to her parents' house. Her father is a rice farmer, while her mother is a home-maker. Arthi comes from a family of one boy and one girl. Her brother works in Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates as a Diesel engine Mechanic.


Arthi is the only child keeping her parents company and she really treasures these moments. She enjoys cooking southern Indian dishes and sharing meals with her family. She also gets to view the beautiful scenery and breathe the fresh air thanks to the many trees surrounding her environment.

DesiCrew is aligning itself with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UNSDGs) by contributing to SDG goal number 1,5,8 and 9 through its model of taking the jobs to the rural areas with a focus on gender equality. 

The SDGs are integrated with social, economic and environment issues at its core with clearly defined goals and targets. According to Arthi, the future is bright in terms of rural technology since rural India is growing ten-fold in internet usage. 

I believe that companies should be consistently measuring their performance as they put more effort towards continuous improvement by meeting all the customer requirements.

How do we cope with a digitally advanced future where many young people are disinterested in agri-business? DesiCrew Solutions Private Limited Company may not have all the answers but they have devised one way to sustain people in the villages of Tamil Nadu and Karnataka states of India through creation of non-agricultural jobs in their centers which makes me optimistic about what the future holds. Offering job opportunities to rural women in India helps to reduce the number of girls getting married early. 

This year Arthi participated in the International Day of Women thus contributing to the conversation of women-relevance and women-impact. As a team leader, she has noted that both men and women are able to produce excellent results at the work place.

Arthi is currently single and intends to get married once the right spouse is identified with the blessing of her parents. Until then, she is focussing on building her career with DesiCrew Solutions who are giving her the opportunity to work in her village.

Arthi is what I would call a successful team leader. I believe the ability to lead a successful team requires one to be well informed and to make strategic decisions by promoting learning, reducing errors, making customers happy, getting things done faster and engaging people in understanding and improving the processes and procedures done.

The Author of this article is Susan Rujema. She is a Rwandan citizen who holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in communication and a Master of Science degree in Procurement and Logistics. She is currently a SITA intern with DesiCrew Solutions working on aligning DesiCrew to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. She earlier worked in monitoring and evaluation in Kenya and communications in Rwanda. Her interest lies in entrepreneurship, peace building, gender development, children's advocacy, climate action and human rights.

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Developing Rural India




The journey from Chennai city to the village of Kollumangudi took us six hours. On the way, I enjoyed the beautiful eco-system and the spectacular scenery. DesiCrew's Kollumangudi center is nestled in the rural setting of Nannilam Tehsil of Thiruvarur district, in the state of Tamil Nadu, India. The center is well equipped with computer, internet connection and a back-up power generator with uninterruptible power supply to ensure that work goes without any hitches. 

The youth at the center are servicing some of the largest companies in the world which requires them to work in shifts in line with the different time-zones of the customer. The centre has employed 168 people from the surrounding villages of which 140 of them are women. This means 83% of the center's workforce are female. DesiCrew is contributing to UN sustainable goals number 5 of gender equality by empowering the girls and women through job creation.

I was impressed by the credentials of the rural workforce at this center. One of them is Mohinder Nag, a 31 year old senior associate manager. He landed the position after seeing an advertisement on a local television channel from his town of Mayiladuthurai in Nagapattinam district of Tamil Nadu. It takes him 25 minutes daily to get to work riding on his scooter. 

He holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree from Bangalore University, India and a Master of Business Administration from the University of Bedfordshire, United Kingdom. He worked in the United Kingdom for a couple of years in the distribution sector as a production lead. He has also previously worked in the Information Technology Industry in Bangalore before returning to his home town to contribute to rural development. He is single and currently living with his parents. Mohinder has one sister who works in animations in the city of Bangalore, India.

Mohinder and his team

 With many villages in the world facing the challenge of basic sustainability, India is no exception. Since its inception in 2007, DesiCrew Solutions Limited has been on the forefront of creating non-agricultural jobs in the villages of Tamil Nadu and Karnataka states of India. As a manager, Mohinder has observed that the female employees stay longer with the company while the men can easily take up opportunites in other regions far away from their homes.

This is because women are rarely allowed to move form their homes and have to stay with their parents and only move away once they are married. This is evidence of the crucial role that women and girls play in ensuring the sustainability of rural communities and in improving rural livelihoods. 

DesiCrew is helping in rewriting the narrative in the lives of its employees through building a confident and independent workforce. After going through the training, the employees at DesiCrew Solutions are flexible and able to work for any client from any part of the Globe. Part of Mohinder's role is to receive the work and to check whether it meets the customer's quality requirements before submitting it to the customer. He also ensures that all the critical measures are put in place to ensure efficiency of the processes such as effective shift schedules. Mohinder believes that passion builds the fastest workers who are able to unlock opportunities as they appear.

Mohinder enjoys working in the Business Process Outsourcing industry due to the opportunity it gives him to improve his skills,  get vast connections and be in an environment to adjust to change. To top it all, he gets to work in the rural setting where he enjoys the quiet environment. Once or twice a month, he likes to unwind by visiting his local beach which is 20 minutes from where he lives.

In India, the pull is strong for people to migrate from their rural communities to cities in search of jobs. Mohinder stands out from the crowd due to his love for his home area and the passion to contribute to rural development. His personal mantra is 'be socially responsible and a good citizen.' 

I believe that leaders should strive to transform their organizations into innovative, efficient and sustainable companies.This can be achieved through cost reduction, productivity improvement, market-share growth, customer retention, cycle-time reduction, defect reduction, culture change and service development.

Mohinder fits the bill of a leader since he is driven to make the customer happy by ensuring that his team is working in a proper environment to maximize their true potential. As a business process outsourcing company, the main question on an employee's mind should be 'How can I make the customer more successful in their business?' Answering that question exhaustively on a daily basis will ensure that the customer stays happy.

The Author of this article is Susan Rujema. She is a Rwandan citizen who holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in communication and a Master of Science degree in Procurement and Logistics. She is currently a SITA intern with DesiCrew Solutions working on aligning DesiCrew to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. She earlier worked in monitoring and evaluation in Kenya and communications in Rwanda. Her interest lies in entrepreneurship, peace building, gender development, children's advocacy, climate action and human rights.







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Empower Her For Poverty Eradication




"My first day to work I was very nervous" Shakthi recalls. Shakthi having grown up in an Indian rural set up managed to get a Bachelor's in Computer Application (BCA) degree which portrayed her as an ambitious dreamer.

Her family had struggled to support her education because they understood that through education she could achieve much more in life. This is not the case in most families. A girl's education is sometimes, if not always, considered 'not so important' in most of the villages in India.

A stable job for Shakthi meant financial independence and being able to support her family. She needed a platform to demonstrate her capabilities and fulfill her ambitions. When she joined it was noticed that she followed phenomenal work ethics such as punctuality, respect to policies and procedures, and demonstrated a high degree of professionalism.

If you've been raised up in a humble background, you definitely understand that you have to work hard to get the life you've always dreamt of. Most of our employees are from very poor backgrounds but we believe that through empowerment they can reach their peaks.

"Working with DesiCrew taught me how to be responsible and how to handle my finances.I learnt how to interact with co-workers and work with different types of clients, " says Shakthi. DesiCrew recalls her as a team leader who handled some of the most critical processes in the company. She manage to transition 2 processes from Bangalore and was responsible for her team's performance in the client location.


She says she has learnt real life skills working with us for 7 years. Her professionalism and work quality has been appreciated and commended by our clients. Shakthi has evolved to become a confident individual and she is grateful to DesiCrew for shaping her career into a meaningful successful and an enjoyable experience.

The worst affected group when it comes to poverty is women. This is one of the reasons why DesiCrew chose to align their company goals to goal number 1 of United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UNSDGs): to end poverty in all its forms, everywhere. Poverty eradication ensures a sustainable and inclusive growth of the economy and society in general.




Poverty is relative. It involves not being able to access basic needs such as food, shelter and clothing as well as basic services such as education. It can also lead to social discrimination, exclusion and lack of participation in key decision making especially in countries that experience class stratification.

Shakthi is one of the lucky people to have benefited from DesiCrew's impact sourcing model of taking jobs to the people in the rural areas. She broke the norm that a woman cannot make it especially if she comes from a rural set up. Many ladies that worked with her perceived her as a role model to look up to.

DesiCrew fraternity continues to relish every step of her growth story and as she takes on to the next step in her life which is her marriage next month, we would like to wish her the very best. I strongly believe that to forge ahead in this fight against poverty we need to economically empower the women in our communities.


The Author of this article is Ben-Bella Kambarage, SITA intern with DesiCrew
working on aligning DesiCrew to the UNSDGs
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Why CEOs Should Explore The MAN In The MAchiNe!

We as CEO's have seen how the winds of automation are vigorously blowing the BPO industry. Every organization is taking note of how automation will or can impact the industry and devising a strategy to incorporate the same in its business plans.

As a member of one of the pioneers of Impact Sourcing, I found Dinesh Goel's article on the future of BPO services very informative. He views automation as the latest hurdle faced by the BPO industry. In his article, he describes the all pervasiveness of processes within the customer industries - the strength of BPO industry vis-a-vis IT. The author postulates that the work would remain and increase, but the human effort involved in executing them may not so - to be replaced by Machine Learning (ML) and Artificial Intelligence (AI). Dinesh also suggest the key steps to be taken by the BPO Service providers to overcome this challenge and convert it to their advantage.

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Three experts from Infosys talked about the impact of automation and AI on the BPO industry and what it means to the client. The experts discussed the nature of changes in expectations from the clients utilizing big data and the advent of automation to develop insights to serve their clients better. They also predicted the impact of human resource and skills required to the extent of having a need to redefine 'talent' to include design thinking elements.

What does AI and ML mean to Impact Sourcing? My opinion as a practitioner in the Impact Sourcing field is that, there should be a relatively larger importance to the human intelligence than to the machines. Therefore, these changes should trigger the following actions to ponder:

  • Incorporate Automation - ML and AI are here to stay and it is better to include it in the business strategy before the customers ask for it.
  • Reshape human intelligence - It is important not just to re-skill the human resources, but you need to be able to influence their adaptability and attitude to their new roles.
  • 'Carpe diem' (Sieze the day) - Don't wait for the market opportunities but be the leaders in combining the human intelligence with machines.
Today, it is business imperative to balance the needs of human and advancement of technology and yet ride the wave of the latest technological change in the BPO industry.

The author of this article is J K Manivannan, CEO of DesiCrew Solutions, a leader in the impact Sourcing space. He has been pursuing the link between technology, job creation and rural ares in his career spanning over two decades. You can find him here: LinkedIn.

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DesiCrew is a rural BPO company that sets up IT-enabled service centers in rural areas, employ and trains local people to meet the back office demands of clients.

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After Graduation, What Next In Rural India?

How would you feel if you were given an opportunity to work in a village? For Arthi Varatharajan, it was a dream come true scenario. S...