Cebu still a ‘strong market’ for outsourcing companies

By: Vanessa Claire Lucero April 03,2016 - 08:58 PM

Cebu continues to be a strong market for the IT-BPO industry, said Wipro regional head for Asia Pacific and Japan Jibin Arjunan.

But the local information technology-business process outsourcing (IT-BPO) industry should improve on the infrastructure facilities and quality of the talent pool.

He also cited the need for consistent branding for Cebu as a BPO hub.

“The IT-BPO industry is entering an age with significant disruption, but it can only be unlocked if Cebu can get regular branding in terms of being a BPO hub, and can provide better jobs for people,” he said during the Asia CEO Forum last week.

Based on the Tholons list of top outsourcing destinations for 2016, Cebu climbed a notch higher to seventh from eighth in 2015.

Cebu has consistently made it to the Tholons top 10, the second Philippine city to do so after Manila which maintained its ranking at second place.

“Cebu has several economic drivers. Central Visayas has been growing at around 8.0 percent per year with tourism and IT being primary economic drivers. Cebu outpaces other cities,” the Wipro official said.

Despite having two major cities in the top 10 outsourcing destinations, the Philippines still has a very small share in the global IT industry, said Jonathan de Luzuriaga, president of the Philippine Software Industry Association (PSIA) and trustee of the Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines (ITBPAP).

“Our global IT services market share in 2015 was only 2 percent. India has a far bigger share with 65 percent. The rest of the world comprises 33 percent,” De Luzuriaga said in the same forum.

The need to improve infrastructure and develop talent were among the challenges identified in the industry, he said.

Other challenges that the Philippine IT-BPO Industry Roadmap 2022 intends to address include legislative and regulatory compliance requirements for companies in the industry, and talent acquisition.

In line with talent development, De Luzuriaga said the industry could have “easily doubled talent” if graduates had the skill sets needed by the industry.

As it is, companies have to invest in five to six months of retraining, he said in the same forum.

The IBPAP targets to finalize the roadmap by September this year, De Luzuriaga said.

“Unlike the previous roadmaps, that were top-bottom, 2022 will be from ground–up. The sub-sectors will take center stage,” he said.

Sub-sectors include contact sectors, healthcare management, IT, and animation and game development.

The roadmap, which is being undertaken by  international consulting firm Frost & Sullivan, aims to boost the Philippines’ share in the global IT industry.

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TAGS: Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines, IT-BPO industry, Philippine Software Industry Association

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