The Outsourcing Week in Review: Wednesday, March 17, 2021

Welcome to Inside Outsourcing: The Outsourcing Week in Review

THE WEEK IN REVIEW

One year after the Philippines’ initial COVID response, daily new cases are rising again and almost back at their August peak, certain local governments are reviving curfews, and the public is left wondering if the reinstatement of strict lockdowns are to follow.

Despite the return of curfew hours, from 10 pm to 5 am for two weeks starting March 15 across much of Metro Manila, Malacañang Palace has recently stated that the country “cannot afford another nationwide lockdown” despite the recent surge in COVID-19 cases.

To combat the pandemic, senators are continuously pushing for mass inoculation – which is not rolling out fast enough with less than 100,000 doses given so far. Senator Joel Villanueva noted that the economic recovery and job restorations are “hinged on the immediate rollout of the vaccination program.” Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph Recto, on the other hand, expressed concerns on vaccination drives during the upcoming rainy season. “When typhoons and floods and the power and transportation disruption they cause can wreak havoc on vaccine rollouts,” Recto stated.

The country targets to vaccinate at least 250,000 people daily… as soon as its main vaccine orders arrive in July of Q3, according to reports. For now, the Philippines will continue its vaccination drive with AstraZeneca vaccines, despite other European countries suspending its use due to supposed health risks. In a joint statement, the Department of Health (DoH) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said “there is no indication for the Philippines to stop the rollout of AstraZeneca vaccines.”

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In other news, foreign direct investments (FDIs) contracted by 24.6% in 2020 due to the economic impact of the pandemic, with the country’s monthly FDI declining by 62.6% in December 2020 alone. However, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) clarified that this is “due to significantly large inflows in December 2019, resulting in what’s called a base effect.” In line with this, Indian Ambassador to the Philippines Shambhu Kumaran said that both countries can recover and derive “maximum benefit” from the digital economy. Kumjaran further emphasized the importance of up-skilling and re-skilling in transforming the workforce.

For some good news, the animation sector is “aggressively hiring” animators all over the country due to the surge in global demand. According to the Animation Council of the Philippines Inc. (ACPI) President Juan Miguel del Rosario, the Philippines is an outsourcing hub serving animation studios in countries such as the United States. This will greatly help the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT), as it is announced its “moving target” of producing 200,000 jobs by the end of 2022.

The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) named the Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) sector as one of its priority sectors for this year’s health and safety inspections. Labor Assistant Secretary Ma. Teresita Cucueco said they’re looking to inspect over 70,000 establishments this year, including the institutions in other priority sectors: construction, transportation, and manufacturing.

In the latest Salary Budget Planning Survey conducted by advisory firm, Willis Towers Watson (WTW), at least 82.4 per cent of companies are looking to increase employee salaries this 2021 – a finding which the humble souls at Inside Outsourcing find hard to fathom. The report further revealed that the BPO industry is one of the most optimistic sectors to see increased demand for talent. This is supported by real estate consultancy firm Leechiu Property Consultants (LPC), with its Associate Director Mikko Barranda saying they have observed more inquiries and site inspection requests from IT-BPM locators since Q4 2020.

More and more outsourcing firms are getting global recognition as they thrive amid the pandemic. Great Place to Work® (GPTW) recently released its list of the Best Workplaces in the country, which is made up mostly of outsourcing of shared services companies. DHL Philippines topped the rankings, followed by call center firm Synchrony Global Services Philippines, Canva Philippines, S&P Global, and American Express. In addition, Open Access BPO was recognized as one of the best BPO companies and a top voice service provider in the recent Clutch 2021 Awards.

In a statement, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) warned aliens against the usage of fraudulent documents and means to enter the Philippines. The agency noted that they’ve received reports of foreign nationals submitting deceptive exemption documents to enter the country. These people will be “dealt with accordingly,” and “appropriate charges will be filed against individuals/entities involved in these activities,” said the DFA.

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Wednesday, March 17, 2021

NEWS THIS WEEK

 

16 March 2021

  • PH’s FDI contracted by 24.6% in 2020 – read article…
  • TCS Philippines named Top Employer for fifth year – read article…
  • Israeli-Filipino pharmaceutical firm to make COVID vaccines in the country – read article…
  • DICT relies on BPO sector to help with 2025 Digital Cities project – read article…

15 March 2021

12 March 2021

  • PH targets to inoculate 250K people daily once vaccines arrive – read article…
  • Open Access BPO recognized as top BPO firm by Clutch – read article…
  • BPO sector one of four DOLE priorities in safety, health inspections – read article…

11 March 2021

  • PH can’t afford another lockdown – Malacañang – read article…
  • Senators urge mass vaccination programs to stimulate economy – read article…
  • DFA warns foreigners vs using fraudulent entry documents – read article…

10 March 2021

Read more Inside Outsourcing Newsletters here:

  1. The Outsourcing Week in Review: March 10, 2021
  2. The Outsourcing Week in Review: March 24, 2021

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