BOI, IBM partner to develop multilingual BPO personnel
THE BOARD of Investments has teamed up with computing giant IBM Philippines to implement programs that will build the capabilities of local business process outsourcing personnel in languages other than English.
A joint statement issued yesterday said that the partnership, dubbed “Philippines as the Global Leader in Multilingual BPO,” aimed to identify sources of multilingual talent through collaborations with academic institutions, as well as by tapping overseas Filipino workers who had worked in countries that spoke other languages.
The partnership likewise sought to start work on a research and development program aimed at improving existing metrics, processes, and management systems for foreign nationals.
IBM Philippines country general manager James Velasquez said the company was in the best position to help the BOI in its bid to strengthen the country’s multilingual BPO capabilities, as it was providing multilingual services itself.
“Today, our local BPO business supports over one million client employees in 15 languages from Manila, and provides global support to 84 countries in North and South America, Asia and (Europe, Middle East, and Africa), all delivered in their natural time zones,” IBM Philippines country general manager James Velasquez said.
“IBM’s capabilities and best practices in the multilingual BPO business, coupled with strong and strategic cooperation from the BOI will further establish the Philippines as an upcoming leader in the global multilingual BPO arena,” he added.
Trade Undersecretary and BOI managing head Cristino Panlilio said this partnership was in line with the government and the industry’s thrust to tap markets other than those that spoke English.
The two parties, however, have not yet identified the priority language skills that will be developed.
By enhancing the local BPO sector’s multilingual skills, he said the industry would be better able to attain its target of generating $25 billion in revenues and 1.3 million by 2016.
“This is also part of the BOI’s commitment to further reinforce our reputation as a preferred destination for niche BPO services,” he said.