The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) expects revenues of BPO companies in the Philippines to increase to $18 billion by the end of 2014 due to its "Next Wave Cities" program. The program aims to set up Information Technology-Business Process Management (IT-BPM) centers in places like Iloilo, Sta. Rosa in Laguna, Bacolod and Baguio City.
During the 2014 International IT-BPM Summit on Monday, DOST secretary Mario Montejo said that the agency is implementing projects to boost the productivity of the BPO sector, mentioning the Next Wave Cities program that will establish and develop IT-BPM hubs in areas outside Metro Manila and Cebu.
The program also aims to roll out information campaigns on the country's BPO services that go beyond voice and contact support. The new areas include healthcare outsourcing, software development, game development and animation.
According to DOST-ICTO deputy executive director Monchito Ibrahim, the Rural Impact Sourcing program will create the best environment for IT-BPM companies to flourish by enabling local residents in the Next Wave Cities to become more entrepreneurial and acquire and develop the ICT skills needed for the industry,
There are about 300,000 people in rural areas that work for BPO companies, and the program will help generate more jobs and let residents work for BPO firms based in urban centers. Montejo cited another program, DOST's disaster-preparedness program, that will provide accurate and timely weather information and hazard maps to the BPO industry.
Montejo said that the projected $18 billion revenue makes the 2016 target of $25 billion "more realistic." The number of jobs in the IT-BPM sector reached 1 million in August, which is closer to the 1.3 million target by 2016.