Business process outsourcing Definition
Business process outsourcing (BPO) is the leveraging of technology vendors to provide and manage a company's critical and/or non-critical enterprise applications. Through the business transformation process of service-oriented transformation, which leverages the technologies and standards of service-oriented architecture, companies can increasingly leverage third party companies that act as business service providers. Business process outsourcing can use off-shore resources, but is not required.
BPO as opposed to Application Service Provider (ASP) usually also means that a certain amount of risk is transferred to the company that is running the process elements on behalf of the outsourcer. BPO includes the software, the process management and the people to operate the service, while a typical ASP model includes only the the provisioning of the software usually via web browser to the customer.