July 11, 2023 – Mayor Albee Benitez convened a round-table discussion with representatives from the Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) sector on July 11 at Delicioso Restaurant in Mandalagan as it aimed to address the issue of manpower shortage in the industry and explore short-term programs to bridge the gap between job openings and qualified applicants.

During the discussion, Mayor Benitez presented data highlighting the 27,995 job openings currently required by the BPO industry, with 30,000 to 35,000 employees or agents currently employed in the sector, BPO serves as a vital economic driver for the city.

However, out of the 1,300 applicants, only 839 were accepted, revealing a 70% hiring rate specifically for job fairs.

Attendees at the round-table discussion included Jonathan De Luzuriaga, CEO of SpringValley Tech, Jinky Besa, CEO of Holysoft, Dr. Mae Llamas, an Investment Consultant, and Jovelyn Canoy, Manager of the Public Employment Services Office. Representatives from Transcom Worldwide (Philippines), Service First Asia Pacific, Concentrix Bacolod, Telephilippines, Inc. (Teleperformance), iQor, Ubiquity Global Services Philippines, Inc., Panasiatic Call Centers, Inc., Teletech, Focus Direct Inc., Global Strategic, and Xilium Professional Services were also present.

In combating this issue, several short-term programs were proposed during the meeting. Mayor Benitez emphasized the importance of collaboration and suggested revisiting existing modules to identify the special skill sets required by specific companies, the Local Government Unit pledged its support for these programs, which include company immersion and simulated training experiences.

The implementation of an enhancement training program focusing on communication and computer literacy was also suggested to elevate the skills of the IT-BPM community.

The BPO sector provided valuable feedback during the round-table discussion; Panasiatic Call Centers, Inc., a prominent player in the industry, lauded the performance of the Bacolod center, hailing it as the best center in the country.

Mayor Benitez proposed to utilize barangay halls as training hubs every weekend to further enhance skills and knowledge among potential BPO employees, to attract individuals from diverse professional backgrounds, and the concept of opening doors for nurses and medical professionals to venture into the BPO industry was introduced, also he suggested that those unable to pursue nursing in hospitals could explore medical services through BPO opportunities.

To ensure regular communication and address ongoing concerns in the BPO sector, it was agreed upon to conduct regular meetings.

The round-table discussion marks a significant step forward in addressing the manpower shortage in Bacolod City’s BPO sector. Through collaborative efforts and the implementation of innovative training programs, stakeholders aim to create a skilled workforce that meets the demands of the industry while providing valuable career opportunities for the local community.
(Source: Bacolod City Public Information Office)

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