BPO Philippines in 2021 & Beyond

With its close cultural affinity to the West, exemplary English language skills and low-cost, high-skilled workforce, it’s no surprise that the Philippines has become the go-to destination for BPO.

There’s a lot to get excited about, and their resilient response to the global health crisis is just the start.

The Philippines ranks as the world’s second-largest BPO destination. By the end of 2019, the Philippines was home to more than 800 registered BPO companies. This has created employment opportunities for more than 1.2 million Filipinos and generated more than £20 billion in annual revenues (about 7.5 per cent of the country’s GDP). Today, the BPO industry is the Philippine’s second-largest income source. Many multinational corporations from the UK, such as Vodafone and HSBC, have either been outsourcing their BPO requirements to third-party vendors in the Philippines, or have set up their own captive (in-house) operation in the country.

“There are plenty reasons why the Philippines has emerged as one of the world’s two leading BPO destinations. On cost, English language proficiency, availability of highly educated and skilled labour as well as the country’s close cultural affinity to the West, the country ranks second to none. It’s therefore not surprising that for many UK-based companies, the Philippines is the preferred business process outsourcing destination,” says Ralf Ellspermann, CEO of PITON-Global, a leading mid-sized BPO in Manila.

The success of the BPO industry in the Philippines is in no small part down to more than a decade of favourable government investment policy. Its workforce is thriving, with excellent standards of education and transport infrastructure making it simple and efficient to set up projects, programmes and enterprises. Over half a million people graduate from tertiary education every year, so the demand for high-skilled workers can be easily met.

What makes outsourcing to the likes of the Philippines so attractive?

Outsourcing remains a critical way for large and complex organisations to ensure they can focus on their core competencies and lower the cost to serve. Finding the kind of flexible and affordable workforce available across the world’s BPO hotspots domestically is simply impossible, making BPO a reliably compelling proposition.

“Customer experience-obsessed companies such as Amazon have set up captive operations in the Philippines. This is a clear testament that offshore business process outsourcing to the Philippines works. Otherwise, these industry-leading companies would not be here,“ explains Ellspermann.

The quality of customer care available from specialised BPO companies in the Philippines is second-to-none, thanks to the Philippines unique combination of advantages. The country has a close cultural affinity to the West and is the world’s third-largest English-speaking country. The BPO industry has grown dramatically over the last twenty years, developing a pool of qualified, skilled and experienced workers who contribute to the industries collective expertise. Labour costs are also low, around 70 per cent lower than the UK, which is one of the reaons why the UK is the third largest service buyer of Philippine BPO services.

The BPO Industry is Surviving the Pandemic

Although the Philippine BPO industry has been hard hit by Covid-19, the country’s key competitive advantages and value proposition for BPO clients from all over the world remain unchanged and unchallenged.

So, while BPO vendors in the Philippines might be faced with a prolonged, swoosh-shaped recovery, the industry is here to stay and will bounce back in due time. Companies of all sizes and industries will always look for ways to lower costs, improve operating efficiencies and enhance the customer experience. And there’s no better way to achieve these business objectives than by outsourcing BPO requirements to the Philippines.