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CCAP: Contact Centers Remain as Main Drivers of PH Economy

by: Sidney Liquigan

Tuesday, April 10, 2018 |

According to the Contact Center Association of the Philippines (CCAP), the contact center sector in the Philippines is still expected to remain as one of the main contributors to the country's economy, despite predicted challenges brought upon by tax reforms and developments in technology, particularly the rise of automation.

Currently, the Philippines' BPO industry has about Php 1.15 billion total revenue. Once it reaches a 16% annual growth pace, the industry's revenue can grow to Php 2 trillion by 2022, making it the main pillar of the Philippine economy, surpassing OFW remittances.

Another proof of the strong performance of the BPO industry, specifically contact centers, the government-sponsored job site PhilJobNet recently released data that shows 17% of the 6,120 active job vacancies posted on the site in the third week of January were call center job openings.

According to CCAP, here are the main reasons why this sector will remain resilient regardless of global and local changes in technology and regulations.

Customer Experience Over Customer Service

In a white paper by consulting and research firm Everest Group, it said that contact centers in the Philippines are ready for the global industry shift from customer service to customer experience. With the Filipinos' innate quality of being hospitable and helpful, they can benefit the most from this shift by providing a pleasant customer experience and adding a human touch to complement the customer service that will be handled by automation.

New High-skill Jobs

At the onset of AI and automation, new high-skill jobs with higher pay rates for BPO workers will be opened. These new employment opportunities are expected to focus on and support a higher level of customer experience.

"We are excited about the new opportunities that are arising within the local contact center sector as we collectively address ongoing shifts focusing on technology and nature of service," said CCAP Chairman Benedict Hernandez.

Benefits to Other Industries

With contact centers conveniently located in business districts surrounded by many retail businesses, contact center agents make up the majority of the consumers of these retailers. Additionally, the continuous growth of contact centers in the Philippines greatly contributes to the growth of the property industry.

"In 2017, we have seen the highest growth so far in terms of supply," said Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL) Philippines Regional Director Sheila Lobien. A total of 1.2 million square meters of new call center office space was recorded in 2017. International companies turn to the Philippines for a cost-efficient location for outsourcing services because of low office rental rates (among the lowest in Asia) and low labor costs.

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