IT-BPM revenues up 18 pct to $18.4-B

By Louella D. Desiderio, The Philippine Star

Posted at Mar 19 2015 07:40 AM | Updated as of Mar 19 2015 03:40 PM

MANILA, Philippines - Revenues of the country’s information technology and business process management (IT-BPM) climbed nearly a fifth in 2014 from a year ago, supported by the growth in both voice and non-voice services.

Speaking at the Asia BPO (Business Process Outsourcing) Summit held yesterday, Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP) chairman Danilo Sebastian Reyes said the country’s IT-BPM sector generated as much as $18.4 billion worth of revenues last year, up 18.7 percent from $15.5 billion in 2013.

Last year’s revenues represent six percent of the country’s total economic output or gross domestic product (GDP).

In terms of employment, the IT-BPM’s workforce count rose to 1.03 million last year from the previous year’s 900,000.

The latest results are supported by growth across all segments such as global in-house centers, healthcare, mobile applications development, gaming and contact centers.

“All sectors are growing,” Reyes said.

For this year, he said revenues are targeted to increase further to hit $21.3 billion, while the workforce count is expected to reach 1.2 million.

This, as voice services and non-voice services are expected to continue to grow.

“Healthcare is becoming big. It is the fastest growing (sector) now in terms of revenues and employees,” Reyes said.

The Philippines is looking to take advantage of opportunities in the healthcare information management system as the US government is moving to the International Classification of Diseases (ICD) - 10 from ICD - 9.

The ICD is a standard diagnostic tool for epidemiology, health management and clinical purposes from the World Health Organization.

Despite challenges faced including typhoons and availability of niche skills to meet the industry’s requirements, Reyes said the IT-BPM sector is on track to meet its goal of $25 billion worth of revenues representing eight percent of the GDP and about 1.3 million employees by next year given expectations of sustained demand for services.

To support the industry’s growth and ensure availability of talent pool, the IBPAP is implementing the Service Management Program (SMP), a 21-unit specialized course designed to provide students the skill sets needed to work in the IT-BPM industry.

The SMP has been rolled out in 17 universities across the country.

To encourage growth in the IT-BPM sector in other parts of the country, the IBPAP is also set to add three to four cities to the list of Next Wave Cities which are considered hubs for information communication technology services.

The country’s Next Wave Cities are Baguio, Davao, Dumaguete, Iloilo, Lipa (Batangas), Metro Bulacan, Metro Cavite, Metro Laguna, Metro Naga and Metro Rizal.

Reyes said the updated list of Next Wave Cities will be released by the middle of the year.

Read more on The Philippine Star