ICT Dept, Cisco sign deal to support hybrid work in Philippines

Warren de Guzman, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 12 2022 08:54 PM | Updated as of Oct 12 2022 08:55 PM

MANILA - The Department of Information and Communications Technology signed Wednesday a memorandum of understanding with networking solutions provider Cisco for “Country Digital Acceleration” to support hybrid work arrangements.

DICT said the deal is expected to boost the agency's drive for hybrid work, where workers split their time between onsite or office work, and remote work.

Cisco said a 2021 study it commissioned showed Filipinos actually benefited more from hybrid work compared to other ASEAN members. 

Productivity improved by 75 percent in the Philippines, compared to 64 percent in ASEAN. Quality of work improved by 79 percent in the Philippines compared to 65 percent in ASEAN. Job knowledge and skills improved 82 percent compared to 66 percent in the rest of the region. 

Filipinos also saw an average increase in savings equivalent to P327,600 over 12 months of hybrid work. That is roughly P6,300 per week, or a 14.5 percent increase in savings.

Bee Kehng Tay, President of Cisco ASEAN says that number may be even understated. 

“Inflation has increased. Inflation rate in terms of food and transport. We have to extrapolate based on the percentage,” Bee said.

However, the Cisco study also showed there are some old issues that continue to hamper the adoption of hybrid work technology. These include connectivity and cyber security.

Uy said they will continue to work on addressing these problems. He noted just last weekend they actually bought the internet to the remote island of Sacol south of Zamboanga. 

“They don’t have electricity, never had internet or mobile connection. There was no Smart, Globe, or DITO. But today they can access Viber, Zoom, they can do FB and I understand some of them are already doing TikTok,” Uy said. 

Regarding cybersecurity, the Cisco study found 57 percent of the respondent small and medium businesses in the Philippines were victimized by some form of cybercrime. 

This was higher than the 51 percent average for the region. The study also found that 28 percent of those respondents in the Philippines reported that those cyberattacks had cost them $500,000 or more each. 

A tenth of respondents reported the cyber incidents had cost them $1 million or more. Those numbers however are lower compared to the rest of the region.


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