Outsourcing in the Philippines
As the business process outsourcing (BPO) industry continues to flourish in the Philippines, the number of foreign investors has increased rapidly. The Philippines is fast becoming the outsourcing country of choice, even surpassing India (2010 IBM Global Locations Trend Report) which had been the leader of BPOs for a short time. There are many reasons why global companies are quickly shifting to the Philippines over other countries for outsourcing services. Here are some of them.
A major reason why companies choose the Philippines for outsourcing services is the lower cost of labour while the quality of service is highly efficient and effective. Filipinos endeavour to produce quality work and this is evident in the anecdotes of successful BPOs. In fact, the industry growth in the country jumped from a reported figure of 400,000 employees in 2011 to over 1 million employees in 2014. By paying less for more, the difference in labour costs, benefits, and operational effectiveness between countries make the Philippines a more appealing location to outsource.
Highly Skilled Workforce
Philippine universities graduate more than half a million students every year. According to the National Statistics Office, the Philippines has a very high literacy rate of about 97%, higher than the most modern and industrialized nations. A popular misconception is that BPOs in the Philippines are limited to call centres, when in fact there are many businesses that utilize talent across a multitude of fields including medical transcription, human resources, customer service, financial services, legal transcription, software development, animation, graphic design, content writing and marketing. Filipinos are just as talented and diverse as any developed nation!
In contrast to other Asian countries, English is recognized as an official language in the Philippines next to Tagalog. Filipinos have excellent communication skills for both verbal and written English and is one of the reasons \the Philippines rose to the top of the global voice service industry. The Business English Index (BEI), a whitepaper released by Global English in 2013, ranked the Philippines as the top BEI for two consecutive years with a score of 7.95, next to Norway with 7.06, and the Netherlands with 7.03. The BEI study is designed to quantify global workers’ English competency in the workplace, where a score of 1.0 indicates the ability of people to communicate and read only through simple English statements, while a score of 10.0 indicates equivalency with native English speakers. Given these ratings, the Philippines has become one of the top outsourcing locations in the world.
Given that the Philippines was colonised by foreign forces from Spain, the USA and Japan, all of whom left their marks on the country through culture, infrstructure, academe and and business practices. Philippine culture is very similar to that of western nations. This helps create good rapport between Filipinos and their westerners colleagues, giving them an edge over other nationalities in providing excellent BPO services.
The BPO industry boom in the Philippines is partly attributed to Filipinos’ willingness to work flexible working hours and work shifts to accommodate clients located anywhere in the world.
Filipinos are legendary for their patience, perseverance, and warmth which can diffuse any stressful situation. These traits allow them to handle even the most difficult customers and offer solutions to frustrated clients. A win-win situation for both employer, employees, as well as your customers.
Excellent Work Ethic
Business owners are willing to invest in Filipino work forces due to their excellent work ethic, values, integrity, loyalty, service-oriention, and congeniality. These characteristics enable them to foster a friendly working atmosphere in any organisation. With their respectfulness and and professionalism already ingrained into their culture, it only adds to the high regard that BPOs place on the Philippines!
Strong Government Support
Because the BPO industry has become an economic pillar and major revenue generator of the country, the Philippine government recognizes the continued potential growth of the industry by providing strong support and infrastructure. Some of the Philippine government’s and industry initiatives include:
- Partnerships with local universities to create BPO-specific curricula to prepare the future BPO workforce
- A voucher system from the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority as funding support for call centre training
- Tax and non-tax incentives to support foreign investment
- Creation of national information and communications technology councils
Managing a business can be a tough and demanding job for industrialists and/or self-owned companies because they have to balance controlling their costs without compromising quality. By outsourcing talent to the Philippines, these companies obtain access to highly skilled, well-educated workers at a lower cost. Businesses can then realise company objectives and goals in a low-cost yet efficient way. Would you like to learn more about outsourcing strategies and scale your business to greater heights? Connect with like-minded entrepreneurs at Yempo today!