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Reasons the Philippine Call Center Industry is Attractive to Investors

by: Sidney Liquigan

Thursday, August 9, 2018 |

The Philippines has a fast-growing call center industry, which has shown consistent rapid growth since its start back in the 1990s. The demand is driven by foreign businesses choosing to outsource their customer support to the Philippines and by the continuous entry of foreign investors setting up call center companies in the Philippines.

According to the Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP) the BPO industry generated $23 billion in revenues and employed around 1.5 million Filipinos in 2016. With voice-based services, or the call centers, as the main stars of the BPO industry, foreign investors from all over the world consider the Philippines as the top destination to establish their call center operations.

Offshore outsourcing generally provides great advantages to businesses. But why are foreign investors specifically attracted to the Philippine call center industry? Aside from the Filipinos' high proficiency in English and their strong affiliation to Western culture, here are the other five main reasons.

Geography

When you are offshoring your business operations, finding a strategic location is an important part of the process. The Philippines is an ideal location for investors to set up their operations because the country’s geographic position in the heart of Asia makes it easily accessible and serves as a point of entry to other locations on the continent.

Positive Outlooks

Amidst the reported challenges of automation and artificial intelligence, outlooks towards the call center industry in the Philippines remain positive. A report by Dezan Shira & Associates saw the growth of the Philippine BPO industry to reach $40-55 billion in total income by 2020. By that year, the firm also projected that the industry would provide around 1.3-1.5 million jobs. The Philippines has overtaken India as the leading call center destination, with the call center industry expected to continue to be the largest contributor to the economic growth of the country.

Lower Operating Costs

Real estate developers continuously develop new BPO-specific office spaces all over the Philippines, keeping office rental rates reasonable and availability high. Operating costs in the Philippines are generally lower due to lower labor costs and lower rental and overhead costs. Setting up a managed operations business outside Metro Manila is just as attractive to investors – they get to spend much less and have the advantage of an equally highly-skilled workforce.

Government Support

As a rapidly expanding industry, the Philippine government is also providing an increasing support to the call center industry to further invite investors. Existing government programs include tax holidays, tax exemptions, and simplified import and export procedures. Moreover, Senator Bam Aquino is also pushing for the retraining of call center employees and upgrading their skills to counter the threat of AI to over 1.4 million BPO jobs in the Philippines. Universities and training centers are also offering courses on customer service training and other programs for would-be BPO workers.

Full Control

Offshoring opens various options and opportunities to investors and company owners that will best fit their requirements. In the Philippines, there is a middle ground between outsourcing and incorporating. MicroSourcing's managed operations model provides the best of both worlds. Through the managed operations model, foreign clients have a Philippine partner that will help establish, host, and manage their call center operations here. They get to enjoy the perks of outsourcing and at the same time, have full command over the level of control they want to take or turn over.

Contact us to learn more about the managed operations model and how we can help you set up your call center operations in the Philippines.

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