IBPAP Treasurer: We can’t control Trump, Duterte
THE Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) industry must focus on the strengths of the Philippines instead of the uncertainties posed by a Trump presidency in the United States, officials of outsourcing companies said on Tuesday.
In a panel discussion at the Management Association of the Philippines (MAP)’s Annual General Membership Meeting, Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP) Treasurer Rainerio Borja stressed the need to concentrate on factors that BPO companies can control.
“We focus on things that we can control. I cannot control Trump. I cannot control our President. We believe the fundamentals of the country hosting this kind of business is very strong,” said Borja, who is also Asia region president of Alorica Corporation.
The Philippine BPO industry has carved a strong niche in the global the BPO landscape and a good track record in providing high-quality outsourcing services over the past years.
Borja noted BPO companies must demonstrate confidence in the Philippines. “For me, our focus is really demonstrating our belief and confidence in the country, because if we don’t, our clients will be the first one to get scared,” he said.
“We are demonstrating it by putting our money where our mouth is. We’re investing heavily in the county for the rest of 2016. We’re investing heavily in 2017. We are investing in Davao. We continue to believe that the fundamentals are still there. And we invest where there is good fundamentals,” Borja added.
Maria Christina Concepcion, president and CEO of Business Process Outsourcing International Inc., noted other factors bigger than the Trump presidency may disrupt the industry.
“The reality is this industry has been disrupted and the disruption did not come from Trump.”We’re disrupted by technology, new business models,” Concepcion said.
One of the disruptions, Concepcion noted, is the shift towards Robotics Process Automation.
Based on a recent report by Colliers International, new technologies have emerged in which robotics and algorithms are used to perform low-skill levels of business processes such as encoding.
The trend is causing industry jitters as the reality of machines replacing BPO employees comes closer.
“While these concerns are well-founded, less than 5 percent of shared services companies believe that the implementation of automation would result in a reduction of manpower,” Colliers noted.
Another controllable factor is the search for new markets, apart from the US, Concepcion noted.
“The world is much bigger than the US, and we need to start focusing on markets where business can come from,” she said.
Significant interests in the Philippines are coming from India and other Asean countries, she added.