The Philippine business process outsourcing (BPO) industry is bracing for the impact of artificial intelligence, automation, and robotics. Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP) chairman Lito Tayag said they are working closely with the government, industry and academia to equip potentially affected workers with new skills.
Tayag added that the BPO industry is moving up the value chain by offering higher-value services that are less likely to be affected by automation. He urged the outsourcing service providers to develop skills required in data analytics, mobile and cloud services and become familiar with new terms like agile and liquid workforce.
According to Contact Center Association of the Philippines (CCAP) operations director Jay Santisteban, call center agents are being trained for jobs that require critical thinking skills and complex decision making. He said Filipinos are in a “very good spot” because of their adaptability and capacity to learn.
In addition to AI, the industry is also watching the impact of U.S. President Donald Trump’s policies. "Well we have seen or heard feedback related to this but at the end of the day we have not seen actual statistics that will say we have slowed down," Tayag explained. "We have articulated this in our roadmap 2022. We want to bring this industry to 1.8 million people in 6 years, making us one of the biggest job suppliers in the country together with other multiplier effect in real estate, transportation, and food."