IT-BPO industry of Philippines has been looking buoyant in the recent years mainly because of the favourable investment climate and the concrete steps that government is taking in this regard. Philippines is increasingly becoming a preferred destination for health care outsourcing, human resource outsourcing and financial and accounting outsourcing.
IT-BPO revenue of Philippines for the year 2011 was USD 11 Billion and the projection made for 2016 at 20% annual compound growth rate was USD 25 Billion. Now the revenue target for 2016 has been revised to USD 27.4 Billion. A top official recently said that government along with the industry groups is working on the plan to achieve these revised and will shortly release a road map for the same.
In order to support the growth of IT-BPO industry in Philippines, Asian Development Bank (ADB) and Department of Finance signed a MOU to establish “Knowledge Hubs” in selected colleges and universities. A total amount of USD 6, 50,000 has been earmarked for this project. Philippines which overtook India in voice based outsourcing is now planning for vertical growth and focusing on knowledge based activities. This MOU has been signed to provide the necessary skill sets for the prospective employees and aims to incorporate the needs of the BPO sector into the curriculum. At least 900 faculty members and more than 3000 college level students are expected to benefit from this program.
Local industry players have also started taking steps to improve the skill sets of the manpower in IT-BPO sector. They have introduced a new online test called Global Competitive Assessment Tool (GCAT) to assess the basic skill sets of an individual working in this sector. Advanced proficiency training in English of 2 weeks duration has also been introduced to improve the English Proficiency of the people looking for employment in IT-BPO sector of Philippines.
The advantage that Philippines now enjoy is a good investment climate and stable investment policy unlike India which is its major competitor. Philippines is already known for its high English Proficiency and skilful work force. The government of Philippines have always been supportive in bringing out industry friendly policies.
The government in tune with the investment friendly policies is thinking of revising six year income tax holiday to eight years and is considering offering more incentives to BPO companies. The industry expects to additionally employ 6, 38,000 workers which is 22% more than the present figures. According to the 2016 road map prepared by Business Processing Association of the Philippines (BPAP), the industry needs additional 1.1 million employees to achieve USD 25 Billion in 2016 and if these figures are revised, it means it will need more people than the present estimate.