The Outsourcing Week in Review: Wednesday, October 28, 2020

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THE WEEK IN REVIEW

The Philippines’ $26 billion outsourcing industry is expected to become larger than ever despite the COVID-19 pandemic. IT & Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP) President Rey Untal said that the sector has shown “tremendous resilience” and that industry experts “are cautiously optimistic of sustaining some level of growth for this industry in the near future.” In addition, the outsourcing revenue’s annual growth is projected to be at 3.5%-7.5% through 2022.

In an anime-meets-Marvel style accolade, the Philippines has been listed among the high performing “Asia-6”.  The Institute of International Finance (IIF) has dubbed six high-performing Asian emerging-market (EM) economies (Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, India, South Korea and the Philippines) as the “Asia-6.” IIF described the Asia-6 as countries that have stood out as major benefactors of foreign capital flows in recent years, and are taking up an increasingly important place on the EM investment map. However, like any good Marvel story, it’s not all easy-wins. Nonresident capital flows to the Asia-6 are projected to decline significantly in the second half of 2020. Further, the Philippines’ foreign capital flows were projected to shrink by 41 per cent (equivalent to $7 billion) – the largest drop in Asia-6. However, non-resident capital flows to the region are projected to recover in 2021.

Adding to the gloom, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) forecasted Asia’s economies are to shrink by 2.2% this year — worse than its previous forecast in June for a 1.6% contraction. IMF noted that India and the Philippines experienced a “particularly sharp” drop in economic activity in the second quarter, “given the continued rise in virus cases and extended lockdowns.” The Philippine economy is forecast to contract 8.3% in the calendar year 2020.

The Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) is continuing its efforts to attract more foreign direct investments (FDI) as reports suggest that existing locators are beginning to normalize operations – seven months after the quarantine. The promotions agency has reported that 87 per cent (or 2,620) of its locator companies have now resumed operations. The report has found that 90% of manufacturing companies are up and running compared to only 83 per cent that is in information technology/business process outsourcing (IT-BPO).

In support the foreign industries, Malacañang Palace is now allowing foreigners with investor visas to enter the Philippines starting on November 1. Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said the foreigners must have a valid and existing visa at the time of the entry and a pre-booked accredited quarantine facility.

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The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is now allowing companies to apply for conversion from an ordinary stock corporation to a one-person corporation (OPC) and vice versa through the signed Memorandum Circular No. 27. The initiative of the agency is for business owners “to benefit from corporate perks such as those under the proposed Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises (CREATE) Bill,” said Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation Chief Economist Michael Ricafort.

However, Senator Manuel “Lito” Lapid recently filed a bill seeking stricter requirements for foreign contractors before securing a license to operate in the Philippines. The proposed measure states that foreign contractors should only be issued a “special license” to undertake a single specific project – which should be subject to a number of restrictions.

In other Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) news, outsourcing firm Alorica is considering relaxing hiring rules to accommodate K-12 graduates. Alorica is proof that the outsourcing sector remains robust, as they have 3,000 job openings waiting to be filled this October to cater to foreign firms with a growing need for support. Davao-based BPO firm SixEleven is also continuing to expand its workforce as it is hiring various roles from Team Leaders to Real Estate Virtual Assistants to expand its current 3,000 seats.

Leading global cloud workforce provider Cloudstaff recently announced that it has appointed Gregory Ryan as the Head of Account Management and Growth for the company’s international operations. Ryan’s responsibilities will encompass all customer experience interactions, organic growth and external customer messaging. Global outsourcing provider Telus is celebrating as is has been recognized as Canada’s leading global workplace by Forbes World’s Best Employers 2020.

Overseas, a survey conducted by cloud communications firm Ozonetel revealed that just 27 per cent of BPO companies in India will permanently switch to work-from-home models in the post-pandemic environment. The survey reported that 53 per cent of Indian call centers witnessed a drop in productivity of agents during the pandemic. The decline in productivity was primarily due to issues regarding internet connectivity, telecom issues, lack of privacy, space, noise cancellation, lack of desktops and laptops while working from home.

 

Wednesday, October 28, 2020

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NEWS THIS WEEK

 

27 October 2020

26 October 2020

23 October 2020

22 October 2020

  • UK sees surge in IT outsourcing contracts – read article…
  • Forbes names Telus as one of the World’s Best Employers 2020 – read article…
  • IMF trims 2020 Asia outlook, cites contractions in India, PH, Malaysia – read article…
  • Cloudstaff names Gregory Ryan as Head of Account Management and Growth – read article…

21 October 2020

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