IT-BPM seen to reap $32-B revenue

BPO file photo from CNN Philippines

THE IT and Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP) said the IT and Business Process Management (IT-BPM) industry is expected to contribute nearly $32 billion worth of revenue to the Philippine economy in 2022, a sum that it said will surpass the industry’s 8-percent contribution to the country’s gross domestic product (GDP).

IBPAP President Jack Madrid revealed on Monday that the IT-BPM industry will end the year on a high note with the robust revenue contribution.

The industry expects to end the year employing 1.56 million Filipinos.

“I am happy to say that we remain very much on the same trajectory as 2021. We expect to end the year with a total of 1.56 million Filipino employees which really bodes well for 2023 and beyond; happy to also say that our revenue contribution to the Philippine economy is probably going to be in the vicinity of $32 billion USD, well on track to surpassing our 8 percent contribution to the country’s GDP,” Madrid said in a televised interview on Monday.

While the industry’s figures indicate continuous growth, Madrid said the IT-BPM industry is not spared from challenges that need to be dealt with such as
the availability of “employable talent.”

“And so I think we will solidify our role as an indispensable economic pillar in the years ahead, but there will be challenges and I want to highlight first and foremost the availability of employable talent that we will need,” said Madrid.

With this, the head of the flagship organization of the IT-BPM industry said, “So we are working hard with our partners in government—[Department of Education] DepEd, Commission on Higher Education [CHED], [Technical Education and Skills Development Authority] TESDA, to upskill our existing workforce.”

Apart from upskilling the current workforce, Madrid underscored the need to build “long-term foundation with early-stage interventions to improve and strengthen our curriculum so we can compete more effectively with the emerging IT-BPM locations.”

In a televised interview last week, Celeste Ilagan, Chief Policy and Regulatory Affairs Officer of IBPAP, said the DepEd and the CHED should ensure that students have skills aligned with the job roles related to the Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) industry.

Ilagan underscored the importance of upskilling the workforce, especially for jobs which are evolving, such as those that require digital skills.

The IBPAP chief policy officer  stressed  need to hone the skills of Filipino employees amid the digital transformation in the global arena. Hence, she called on DepEd and CHED to equip students with the necessary skills to join the BPO work force.

“We’ve been 20 years in the industry, all of our services are becoming  higher value and the skills required are also increasing; the requirements of employees in the old days are now vastly different from those required today,” Ilagan had said, speaking partly in Filipino.

The IT-BPM sector’s revenues rose 10.6 percent from 2020 levels to $29.49 billion in 2021, eclipsing its recalibrated target for 2022.

Meanwhile, the number of full-time employees (FTEs) in the industry increased by 120,000 in 2021, bringing the sector’s total headcount to 1.44 million in 2021.

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