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80,000 jobs expected from call contact center industry

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By Minerva Newman

CEBU CITY – From 80,000 to 100,000 jobs are expected from the IT-Business Processing Outsourcing (BPO) industry as, the Contact Center Association of the Philippines (CCAP) predicted.

(L-R) Contact Center Association of the Philippines (CCAP) chair Benedict Hernandez and CCAP President Jojo Uligan (CCAP Website / FILE PHOTO / MANILA BULLETIN)

(L-R) Contact Center Association of the Philippines (CCAP) chair Benedict Hernandez and CCAP President Jojo Uligan (CCAP Website / FILE PHOTO / MANILA BULLETIN)

The CCAP sees a growth of seven percent this year despite a slow pace in the global IT and Business Processing Services (BPS) sourcing at three to four percent in 2018.

Contact Center Association of the Philippines (CCAP) chair Benedict Hernandez is confident the call center industry in the country will continue to grow because the Philippines has a very strong foundation and remains the leader in customer experience (CX) delivery.

“We have enjoyed the global contact center strength in CX that is so uniquely Filipino. The Philippines has established that personal touch in the customer service market. Our next level is to develop analytics and the ability of our employees to work with technology and influencing customers to change according to their global market,” Hernandez said during the two-day Contact Islands 2019 conference at Shangrila Mactan Cebu last Wednesday.

Hernandez said the contact center industry in the country employs 2.2 million people.

H. Karthik, from the consulting firm Everest Group, said the Philippines still enjoys 16 to 18 percent of the estimated global market of $81 to 83 billion, and he forecasts a global market growth of four percent this year.

Karthik said the uptick is seen in the country’s increasing demand of real estate for the IT-BPO of 126, square meters from January to April this year, which according to him is back to historical levels.

CCAP President Jojo Uligan said the organization has 107 call center companies as members and they provide 70 to 80 percent of the employment in the country.

Uligan agreed with Karthik on BPO firms buying more space in Philippine’s contact center market.

Uligan said the shift to the digital market unlocks new opportunities for the local contact center industry. For the last 15 to 18 years, work skills and talents in the industry have changed tremendously with the introduction of digitalization, artificial intelligence, analytics, and robotics.

Uligan said the industry’s top concerns today are upgrading skills of call center agents and searching for more top executives.

“CCAP is always upscaling their talents, skills, and needs of the contact center industry and we expect government to go everything digital and analytics to better prepare the children to go into these categories,” Uligan said.

The industry is looking for people with good communication skills, critical thinking, developing the sense of curiosity in the changes in the digital and AI world to tech-business to robotics.

There is also greater need in the specific domain skills in accounting, offshore and nearshore market for the healthcare customers, employment to mid and high contact leadership, Uligan added.

Contact Islands 2019 aims to explain how digitalization, analytics, AI and robotics affect the industry. Nearly 300 participants mostly from the C-level and senior level executives from the IT-BPM attended the event.

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