Brazil is beloved the world over for its jaw-dropping rainforests, pulsing nightlife, glorious white-sand beaches, and vibrant culture. You probably know that already. What you may not know, however, is that it is also a hot destination for outsourcing.
There are tons of reasons that could lead you to consider outsourcing your business processes—and lower wages, attractive governmental policies, and dependable technologies surely sound good to any businessperson. Plus, outsourcing allows you to focus on what you do best, which is unlikely to be the administrative tasks, IT work, call center operations, and so forth that a Brazilian outsourcing partner can do for you.
So, you’re wondering, why outsource to Brazil? Well, while there exist many potential outsourcing destinations, the advantages of outsourcing to Brazil make it a top choice for many. If you’re curious about outsourcing to Brazil as a cost-effective alternative to in-house tasks, read on.
Businesses have become quite fond of their Brazilian outsourcing partners for good reason. While the list below is not comprehensive, it does demonstrate compellingly why outsourcing to Brazil is a good idea for any company that wants to save money and get more done.
If you, like most companies, like the idea of increasing your profit margins for a relatively small upfront increase in effort – and a significant decrease down the road – then outsourcing to Brazil is for you. It all comes down to the relative difference in the cost of living between Brazil and many developed countries.
“The average cost of living in Brazil ($675 USD) is 69% less expensive than in the United States ($2,213 USD).” The same source cites Brazil as ranking 133rd on a list of most expensive countries in the world ... with the United States ranking 5th.
Because people live on less in Brazil, their salaries are lower. Outsourcing partners therefore don’t have to charge their clients – you – as much money in order to provide the same services that, in the US, would be much higher. That goes for call centers, IT work, payroll, and more.
Also, the exchange rate between the United States and Brazil is quite favorable. One Brazilian real equals only .19 USD, which means an American company can stretch its budget when working with Brazilian talent.
In addition to the cost-of-living difference, one of the best reasons to outsource to Latin America is the high literacy rate. Compared to other developing countries, Brazil’s literacy rate of more than 99 percent is an excellent testament to the country’s emphasis on education and its ability to serve your needs.
Where to find such high-quality talent? Well, all across the country, it seems. Brazil’s major cities are packed with qualified workers. Several outsourcing hub cities have sprung up throughout the country in cities such as Rio de Janeiro, Florianopolis, Porto Alegre, Campinas, Brasilia, Sao Paulo, and Curitiba ... just to name a few.
Another perk you'll enjoy when identifying an outsourcing partner in Brazil: the country’s widespread implementation of technology parks. A technology park is a dense urban area that combines places of employment, residential housing, and retail options. And these hubs of connectivity offer reliable telecommunications infrastructure — a huge selling point for anyone looking to outsource call center or IT work.
This combination of work opportunity and high quality of life draws the best talent from around the country and even from abroad to work in Brazil. That’s lucky for you, because those talented employees are the ones who end up working on your projects.
Brazil, officially known as the Federative Republic of Brazil (or Brasil, if you’re spelling it in Portuguese), has many favorable laws and regulations to encourage outsourcing there ... and few, if any, that prohibit what kinds of outsourced labor can be provided. As an overview:
Another important aspect to include is the favorable time zone difference that North American-based organizations enjoy when partnering with Brazilian companies. Brazil is only one hour ahead of Eastern Standard Time, and it is in the same time zone as, or only a few hours behind, the rest of the country.
That means service providers are awake at the same time as people in U.S. and Canadian organizations and institutes, so no one has to struggle with a time delay. Similarly, you won’t have to stay up late at night or wake up early in the morning to get a little digital facetime.
Doing business in Latin American countries is, for this reason, increasingly popular with Silicon Valley and other huge tech hub companies, who no longer have to rely on help from the opposite side of the world.
It is critical to note that neither a lack of knowledge nor your company’s foreign status will protect you if you break the law while outsourcing work to Brazil. Although the laws and regulations make working in Brazil easy for foreign companies, you must remain aware of what they are in order to ensure you’re always above board.
The truth is, a huge variety of business regulations and considerations exist. While the general umbrella terms are applicable in nearly every country on Earth, they are often interpreted very differently, according to the legal code of the nation in question.
Before you outsource, therefore, you need to understand how each legal area operates in the outsourcing destination – as well as the legal ramifications outsourcing there will have in your own country. Considerations include:
Be sure you’re up on the implications of the general data protection act (LGPD) which acts as a regulator of how companies use personal data in Brazil. The Brazilian government takes this very seriously in telecommunications and call centers in Brazil, as well as in IT and any other types of BPO (business process outsourcing).
Also, when outsourcing to Brazil — or any other location in South America or the world at large — always draw up very clear legal service agreements with any provider in the outsourcing industry, which will help both parties ensure that all legal aspects are met and transparent.
If you are outsourcing for the first time, it probably feels difficult to meet all of these requirements. If so, it’s a good idea to work with a professional matchmaker to help you find the right service provider in Brazil. More on that later.
All right, the list of benefits is looking pretty good. So exactly which tasks might you consider offshoring – or, in the case of Brazil, nearshoring?
Glad you asked. Here are some of the most popular services you might consider for your own company. (Note that the list is not exhaustive, though, so if you have another idea, make sure to talk to an expert about it to learn how to make it happen!)
Call center services are essential for many large companies, but finding the right provider in Brazil can prove tricky. You need capable English speakers, highly trained in the use of technology as well as marketing or customer service. Brazil can offer both, and it can do so in a time zone that’s very close to yours and that of your customers.
When customers call for help with a piece of software, assembling a piece of furniture, or using a particular product, they expect and deserve immediate, knowledgeable help. By working with a reputable customer support provider in Brazil, you can give that to them at a fraction of the cost.
Outsourcing to Brazil is very common in the IT industry. This makes sense, since information technology is one of the easiest services to send abroad. No longer will you have to pay for IT services in-house; instead, you can nearshore your daily duties to the bustling Brazilian IT sector.
Software outsourcing is another common choice that both established and start-up companies make. Brazilian developers and software engineers are highly skilled but cost only a fraction of what an equally trained person in the United States would cost. From Python to Java and everything in between, they can easily help you develop that website or app you’ve been dreaming up.
In addition to less tangible, more digital business processes, Brazil is also a safe bet for manufacturing help. If you’re in the science and technology or retail sectors, you could save a lot of money. Not only is labor cheaper there, the cost of goods will likely also reflect the financial difference between the American and Brazilian economies.
You will find the most success when outsourcing if you take time to understand the country you’re working in and truly appreciate what sets it apart from your own.
While it is the responsibility of the provider to ensure that they’re remaining compliant with the laws of their country, you should never trust someone to do that for you. When you do business in a foreign country, you are also on the hook for remaining compliant.
That said, you can’t afford not to familiarize yourself with the rules and regulations. Even then, you must cultivate a trusted source of information who will let you know about government updates as they come. Again, not knowing about those updates won’t secure you a pardon if you run afoul of those laws.
If you don’t have your own source of information, you can always work with a company that stays up to date about such things and informs you of what you need to know before anything goes wrong.
Even if you won’t be there yourself, you will be working with partners who have grown up in a completely different cultural milieu, with a completely different way of doing things. Not only does this have ramifications for legal issues, privacy, and so forth – not everyone will take the same approach to business as you do – but it can also impact your working relationship.
Regarding Brazil, business culture is similar in many ways to that of America. However, whereas the US has adopted a very pro-telecommuting mindset, Brazil still very much prefers face-to-face interaction. You may notice that your partners want to talk on the phone or Zoom to review tasks you feel could be discussed over email, for instance.
Be gentle when working out such differences. Once everyone is more familiar with one another, you’ll have an easier time getting what you need on your timetable and in the way that works for you.
You should always conduct thorough research into an outsourcing vendor before committing to their services. While it’s tempting to offload your unwanted tasks as quickly as possible, that can lead to some serious drawbacks down the road if you don’t vet them carefully enough.
Instead of rushing, talk to several potential vendors to find out:
Do your due diligence and you’re much more likely to wind up with someone with whom you enjoy working.
While Americans are used to sharing their opinions bluntly, Brazilian culture is a little more reserved. If you do not make an effort upfront to foster open lines of communication, you may not get the information you need when you need it. So for your own sake, make that a priority.
It is also important to make sure that you have a trusted partner who speaks fluent English and fluent Portuguese (or whatever language your outsourced personnel speaks). This way, the Brazilian IT staff, admin professionals, or payroll specialists don’t have to have an excellent command of English, which might cost you more money.
Instead, you simply communicate with your go-to person and they relay your wishes to the team. Bonus points if your on-site translator happens also to be the outsourcing relationship manager!
Convinced that outsourcing to Brazil is a good idea for you? Then it’s time to find a company with the right know-how, plenty of experience in staff augmentation, and an excellent price point. Unfortunately, that’s much easier said than done.
Because Brazil is such a mecca for outsourcing in Latin America right now, it can be difficult to separate the wheat from the chaff. Even if you follow the above steps – learning the regulations, understanding the local culture, taking time with your choice, and creating open lines of communication – it’s not always easy to land on perfect providers.
For that reason, the best way to find an outsourcing partner in Brazil is to work with a trusted expert who can facilitate the whole search and partnership-matching process.
Good news! TDSGS is here to do just that. We have more than two decades of experience in the industry, plus a large book of outsourcing contacts around the world. That’s why we’re trusted by big-name companies such as Microsoft, Verizon, Amazon, Airbnb, and Visa – and it’s why you should trust us as well.
Want to learn more about your outsourcing options in Brazil, Latin America, or around the world? We invite you to get in touch today!