Malaysia: Its Strength is Language

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Malaysia is one of the most popular countries for shared services and BPO operations in Asia. Since 2000, there has been a steady increase in both captives shared services centres (SSCs) and BPOs, while the ratio of captives has consistently been somewhat higher than for BPOs. 

While the most popular service delivery locations in Malaysia remain the areas around Kuala Lumpur, expanding to Selangor, Penang also rates highly for captives. Although overall there are more captives than the BPOs, more states have an outsourcing footprint than a captive one. Indeed, a number of states offer only BPO or ITO centers. 

The market is still predominantly driven by transactional processes, with only 5% of centers offering high value processes alone (meaning treasury, R&D, analytics, human capital management, etc), but nearly a third offering a mixture of both.

Malaysia’s overwhelming strength is its languages. As a result, it operates more as a regional hub than a domestic model, providing services to business customers across the broader region. It also has a significant segment of SSCs that service global customers.

View the full interactive data set on the Malaysian services landscape from SSON’s data analytics centre, Dart Institute.