[ Manila Bulletin Online ] September 22, 2008
The provincial government of Ilocos Norte is turning the province into a hub for business process outsourcing (BPO).
Provincial officials signed recently a memorandum of agreement with Sitel, a leading global BPO provider and the Philippines’ 2008 International ICT BPO Company of the Year.
Under the MoA, the province of Ilocos Norte will embark on the Sitel Community Training for Employment Partnership (SCTEP).
SCTEP is one of the many components of "Sitel footprints," the company’s corporate social responsibility program.
SCTEP seeks to address the industry’s concern about the increasing demand for qualified manpower.
It provides free capability-building training for the residents of the partner local government unit (LGU) via the Sitel Mobile Academy. The training includes English communication skills coaching, technical and call center skills workshop, and self-confidence building exercises.
Sitel expected that its CSR initiatives will produce competent BPO professionals to meet Business Processing Association of the Philippines’ (BPA/P) target of one-million, industry-generated job opportunities by 2010.
"Sitel’s commitment to the Ilocos Norte government goes beyond providing accessible call-center skills training at no cost. We are also committed to provide job opportunities to those who wish to be part of the company’s growth in the booming BPO industry," said Sitel Philippines president Dan Reyes.
The Ilocos Norte government is the fifth local government unit to partner with Sitel for SCTEP. The program is being implemented in four other areas. These are Tarlac and La Union where Sitel academies have already been established, and Ifugao and Mountain Province, where Sitel Mobile Academy also operates.
Ilocos Norte Gov. Michael Keon, said "it is but proper for us to be ready for the opportunities that the emerging BPO industry brings. We are currently working on the requirements for the inclusion of our province in the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) map of the Philippines, and our partnership with Sitel will help us realize this goal."
Sitel is banking on Ilocos Norte’s untapped pool of talents as the business expands, acquires new clients and braces for its future growth. In return the company gives alternative career options and source of income to unemployed, underemployed, out-of-school youth, and retired individuals of the province.