By the looks of it, Philippines is sitting on a goldmine in the BPO industry today. Many thanks to Uncle Sam and over 900,000 people who brave the exacting environment of catering to clientele hundreds of miles away.
Yes, we’ve come a long way. Already, the Pearl of the Orient has been recognized in 2010 as the largest business process outsourcing industry in the whole world – topping such giants as India. Following this path, it’s expected gross revenue from BPO will reach a whopping $25 billion by 2016. Wow! That’s a lot of money. A little math will tell you that figure’s about 10 percent of the whole nation’s GDP. And running close second to us – and currently our greatest global competitor – is our giant techie neighbor India, home to a billion plus people. Pardon their funny “Hindi” English for their technical prowess is tops. Certainly, English pays. Chinese billionaire Jack Ma is living proof to that.
So it’s but righteous we pay homage to the Top 10 Cities that have been instrumental in making Philippines the foremost capital of the BPO world.
To note, being a BPO hub is no joke. It takes infrastructure to be able to function properly (i.e., telecommunications, internet, electricity). And most importantly, the pool of talent. Take away one equation from the other and you’ve just got wishful thinking – and a lot of work to do.
BPO growth in Dumaguete City has been spurious with major call centers establishing themselves in the area. This is attributed to the large pool of talent and great infrastructure. Top Players: TeleTec, SPI Technologies, Ventus
Tholons World Rankings: Unranked
#9: Naga City
It’s no surprise Naga City will get our attention and be part of this A-list. Currently, the city boasts of 3 IT parks which offers about 30,000 seats for over 120,000 agents in full swing. Now that’s a lot. And Naga City is just starting to flex its muscles. Top Players: IBM (International Business Machines)
Tholons World Rankings: Unranked
With a long list of colleges schools topped with a slew of telco companies supplying the region, Pampanga has attracted quite a number of BPO companies who have become part of the landscape. No volcano eruption could limit the Kapampangans. Add Clark Special Economic Zone (CSEZ) and you’ve got an irresistible offer. Top Players: Sutherland Global, iQor, Elcell, Aerospace Products.
Tholons World Rankings: Unranked
The high winds and cold weather certainly are no deterrent to the BPO spirit of Baguio City. Both in the KPO (Knowledge Processes Outsourcing) and BPO industry. Top Players: Convergys, TeleTech, PeopleSupport , ThoughtFocus Technologies
Latest Tholons World Rankings: top 99 (maintained)
#6: Iloilo City
Thanks to concerted effort of local and national government agencies plus aggressive marketing efforts and talent development, Iloilo is a world-class BPO industry. Read: Andrew Tan building a PhP5 billion BPO complex in lloilo. Talk about the right ecosystem. Top Players: KPMG, CallBox
Latest Tholons World Rankings: top 95
#5: Bacolod City
The City of Smiles has certainly a lot to smile about. Even way back in 2013 it has enjoyed a 30 to 35% growth in the country’s Information and Communications Technology (ICT)-BPO sector, edging the giant India which posted a lower 10-15%. Added to this, its local government is pushing for the Negros First CyberCenter modern IT facility, to benefit 6,000 workers and 20,000 indirect workers giving roughly PhP1 billion to the local economy. Top Players: Accenture, Colliers International, Convergys
Tholons World Rankings: Top 93 (formerly 94)
#4: Davao City
A strong-willed local government has certainly helped the city. Its infrastructure ready for world-class deployment, Davao is fast emerging as the leading ICT Hub in the Mindanao islands. Top Players: Sutherland, Concentrix, Teleperformance
Tholons World Rankings: top 69 (formerly 70)
#3: Sta. Rosa, Laguna
With one of the highest availability of graduates and potential workers, Laguna is poised to be the next BPO star in the Philippines outside of Metro Manila and Metro Cebu. And over time, it has shown its potential as promised. Top Players: Convergys, Advanced, Infonxx, Allianz Solutions
Tholons World Rankings: top 82 (formerly 84)
#2: Cebu City
With IT buildings sprouting in most strategic places, it’s no wonder Cebu City has been able to hold its own. Today, the Queen City of the South is second only to Manila in terms of population and spread of services. Most Manila-based centers have grown extension centers with substantial number of employees-agents. Top centers include: Convergys, Aegis, TeleTec.
Tholons World Rankings: Top 8
#1: Manila NCR
Biggest share of the pie lies in the Metro with 70% of all service providers located there. Not bad, really. Notable companies in the KPO (Knowledge Processes Outsourcing) and FAO (Finance and Accounting Outsourced) include: JP Morgan, Wells Fargo, AIG, and Thomson Reuters.
But as good as it gets, there are pressing issues that face the country’s biggest BPO pool. One is the rising incidence of BPO-related diseases. Though not reaching an alarming rate (not yet), lifestyle changes has certainly seen the rise of AIDs for instance.
Another challenge – and the more important one – is that of saturation. As disclosed by Manuel Ravago, Tholons President for Research, “If the country is unable to develop larger, alternative delivery hubs, Manila NCR and Cebu should expect further saturation issues and the resulting consequences (i.e. increased provider costs brought about by higher talent acquisition and retention costs and corresponding increases in attrition rates).”
Now that’s a mouthful but it goes to show we just can’t sit on our laurels. Let’s do our share of expanding what Manila has started to the rest of the country.
Tholons World Rankings: Top 2 (overtaking Mumbai, India)
Tholons is a leading think-tank when it comes to Global Outsourcing and Research. They see the movements of the BPO, KPO and all the other outsourced processes. Presidents, CEO’s seek their advice on key strategies. In short, they mean business. Big business.
Ok Gentlemen, that’s about it for out little chitchat. Hope this one was informative enough and didn’t cause you to doze off. Do throw us some of your thoughts in the comments section below if you feel I’ve fallen short of your expectations. I’d love to hear what you have to say, homie!
And please be a good sport, spread the word around and share this info-tainment. Earn some “pogi points” and be part of our Club Noveau of Good Chakra. Think Naruto.
For a change let me end this article with a French saying, “Le prix d’Amour, c’estseulement Amour, … Il faut aimer sil’onveutêtreaimé.”Translated that should mean: The price of love is only love, … one must love if one desires to be loved.
Now, you know some French – aside from your regular French (e.g., fries and kiss). And yes, that should get you started. Who knows a French call center may come to town!