The Outsourcing Week in Review: Thursday, May 20, 2021

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Welcome to Inside Outsourcing: The Outsourcing Week in Review

THE WEEK IN REVIEW

The Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) reported a 54% rise on its approved investments for the first quarter of the year. According to the investments promotions agency, they have approved P25.38 billion worth of investments in Q1, a huge leap from the P16.5 billion worth of approved investments at the same time last year.

However, around P16.07 billion worth of investments for Information technology (IT) parks and centers in Metro Manila remain pending due to the Administrative Order (AO) 18 – a presidential order that banned new ecozone developments in Metro Manila to give way to provincial investments. PEZA noted that eight IT centers and one IT park endorsements were returned to them, “with noted deficiencies for rectification.” With this, the agency is coming up with a new structure to decentralize and regionalize its services as it aims to develop more ecozones in the provinces.

Metro Manila and its nearby provinces, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, and Rizal, shifted to the General Community Quarantine (GCQ) “with heightened restrictions” starting May 15 until the end of the month – unless extended. Under this restriction, public transportation, dine-in services, and gatherings will be allowed, “but some curbs will remain.” Inline with this easement, the border controls have also been relaxed with a wider range of visas now being allowed entry into the country.

The country’s hefty quarantine restrictions is one of the reasons why the Institute of International Finance (IIF) cut its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth projection for the Philippines from 7.2% to 6.5%. While neighboring countries like Indonesia, Malaysia, and Vietnam are expected to return to their pre-crisis levels this year, the Philippines is lagging behind – as it is projected to reach its pre-pandemic output levels by 2022.

According to the data released by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), the Philippines’ Gross Domestic Product (GDP) contracted by an annual 4.2% in the first quarter – marking the most prolonged recession since 1985. The country’s services industry, which includes the Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) sector, also dropped by 4.4% in Q1.

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More initiatives are being launched to support the educational needs of the Philippine’s burgeoning IT-BPM industries. This week, the University of Perpetual Help System (UPHS) in Molino, Cavite, was recognized by PEZA as a Knowledge, Innovation, Science and Technology (KIST) special economic zone institute. A KIST institute is a type of ecozone that aims to link the academe to various industries to develop a conducive HR infrastructure for Philippine businesses.

Additionally, Davao-based firm, Performance 360 Call Center, will be providing free call center training programs for senior high graduates and job seekers looking to pursue a call center career. Through the program, trainees will be familiarized with the Western – and even Australian – working culture (‘throw another shrimp on the barbie’). English communication and customer service skills will also be taught, among others.

In other BPO news, in a growing trend amongst BPOs, Fusion Philippines announced that it will shoulder its Philippine employees’ COVID-19 vaccination for free. In a statement, the company announced that it will acquire 2,500 doses of vaccine for the first phase of its vaccination drive as it furthers its “commitment to protecting its employees’ health, safety, and well-being.”

Further, BPO firm Everise received back-to-back awards from international award-giving bodies. The firm received the Silver Stevie Award for Company of the Year by Stevie’s American Business Awards, a premier business awards program in the U.S. In addition, it also received the Best Platform Development Award and the Best Tech Developer for their Digital Experience (DX) Blueprint approach at the Malaysian Digital Association’s d-Awards.

Overseas, BPO destinations around the world are also brimming with great news. In India, digital transformation consulting firm Synechron is set to hire up to 2,000 employees across the country to boost it’s India outsourcing operations. In addition, Synechron Managing Director and Delivery Head for India, Hareesha Pattaje said the company is witnessing fast growth, so they’re also looking for people to fill positions across the US, Europe, Middle East, and the APAC regions.

In Jamaica, the country’s Ministry of Industry, Investment, and Commerce is looking to facilitate the promotion of its BPO industry through its National Five-year Global Digital Services Strategy. According to Minister Audley Shaw, the strategy aims to increase the BPO sector’s employment to 70,000 in 2025, and it will “pave the way for introduction of new businesses in the Jamaican landscape along the outsourcing value chain.”

Great news for everyone! A little outsourcing competition wouldn’t hurt, would it?

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Thursday, May 20, 2021

NEWS THIS WEEK

 

19 May 2021

18 May 2021

  • Rural call center to provide free training programs – read article…
  • P16bn worth of IT investments remain pending due to NCR ecozone ban – read article…
  • Jamaica to implement five-year strategy to expand its BPO sector – read article…

17 May 2021

  • Cavite-based university declared as science and technology ecozone – read article…
  • IIF slashes PH growth forecast to 6.5% – read article…
  • PH extends travel ban to South Asian countries until month-end – read article…
  • Fusion to shoulder employees’ COVID-19 vaccinations – read article…

14 May 2021

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