Philippines’ “next wave of cities” for the BPO sector includes Lipa City for the third time now.
The Department of Science and Technology-Information and Communications Technology Office (DOST-ICTO) and the Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP) named eight cities in Luzon, including Lipa City, in the list of the Next Wave Cities for the growth of the country’s information technology and BPO sector. Other cities in the list include Baguio, Cagayan de oro, Dagupan, Dasmariñas, Dumaguete, Malolos, Naga, Sta. Rosa, and the municipality of Taytay.
Top BPO hubs in the Philippines are Metro Manila, Metro Cebu, and Metro Davao. These four areas in the NWC list – including Lipa City – are at least an hour and a half away from Manila by land.
First named in the NWC list in 2009 and 2012, Lipa City can be the next top BPO hub in the Philippines. Thousands of call center agents and BPO professionals pump millions into the local economy of Lipa, supporting the growth of real estate and retail sectors that are evident in the presence of large shopping malls such as SM and Robinsons.
In a news article by Thestandard.com.ph, Lipa, which has a population of more than 300,000 people, has 10 BPO companies including TeleTech Customer Care Management Philippines Inc., Alorica Philippines Inc., Tele-Accent Call Center Solutions Inc., Bubu IT Solutions Inc., Lasting Line Contact Center Inc., Primary Care Management Inc., Clear To Close Services Inc., SPT Business Resources Inc., Maestro Systemas Technologies and The Results Companies.
Moreover, the cities of Baguio, Dumaguete, Iloilo and Lipa, as well as a cluster of cities and municipalities in Metro Bulacan (Baliuag, Calumpit, Malolos City and Marilao towns and Meycauayan City), Metro Cavite (Bacoor Dasmariñas City and Imus cities), Metro Laguna (Calamba and Sta. Rosa cities and Los Baños town), Metro Naga (Naga City and Pili) and Metro Rizal (Antipolo City and Cainta, and Taytay towns), were on the 2012 list.
There are also “new emerging locations” in the 2016 list termed by DOST-CTO and IBPAP. These citites are: Batangas City, Balanga, Iriga, Laoag, Legazpi, Puerto Princesa, Roxas, Tarlac, Tuguegarao and Zamboanga. All of them are assessed on talent availability by 40%, infrastructure by 30%, business environment by 20% and cost by 10%. In this assessment, talent availability depends on the city’s number of graduates that are within the 25-kilometer radius of the city.
2016 is a critical year not only for the country especially to the BPO sector because of the coming May 2016 elections. As we know, the developments in infrastructure in the Philippines especially in areas other than Metro Manila – an important element for the BPO sector – depends so much on the next government. But looking at the rise of the rural cities in the NWC list, it assures us that the opportunity to build and groom a career is not only limited in Metro Manila but also to other cities closer to our families and loved ones. Lipa City is just one of many more emerging cities in the Philippines.