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Despite the ongoing panic on a supposedly mass firing in lieu of machines, leaders and experts are continuing to enlighten people’s minds that machines won’t take over the workforce. Currently, an industry leader has said that technology won’t replace Filipino employees in the business process outsourcing (BPO) sector, but will amplify the process instead.
Sudhir Agarwal, the chief executive of Everise and C3/CustomerContactChannels, said reminded that there will always be a need for human interaction, and the existence of technology is to streamline processes in order make things faster than before.
“In the BPO industry especially, technology will be an enabler by making processes more efficient and making things happen faster. At the same time, with 83 percent of customers always wanting to speak with another human to explain and answer their doubts and queries, there will always be a need for human interaction and so a need for humans in the BPO sector. Technology will enable more human-to-human interaction, not replace it,” Agarwal said via Manila Standard.
Before, client demands and expectations are only on a certain level that is easily reached by traditional ways of service. However, the rise of technology has opened new doors for business and customers. As for customers, they now realize that everything is through the touch of their finger, whether contacting the business through their desktop or mobile phones.
“BPO centres are expected to service customers through multiple channels such as voice, text, social media and chatbots. Technology will allow the Filipino sector to do this. AI, automation, and other innovations will take away many of the mundane and routine tasks that are currently carried out by BPO employees, thus freeing them and enabling them to focus on higher-value jobs that involve more customer interaction. Besides delivering a higher level of analysis for clients, AI will be able to merge and connect all customer services channels from online to text to voice, resulting in better service levels and ultimately future-proofing the BPO sector in the Philippines, for years to come,” Agarwal said via Manila Standard.
“What is so amazing about the injection of AI and technology is that it will enable the very same BPO employees to do so much more, at a faster pace and a better level of service and quality,” Agarwal added. “Automation and AI are here to help the Philippines move up the value chain, leading to an increase in mid-skilled jobs and high skilled services,” said Agarwal via Manila Standard.
The Philippines is known to be one of the hubs for the BPO sector from different international countries. But, the archipelago needs to step up its game in order to remain as a global leader in the BPO sector, Agarwal said. He added that the county needs innovation and accept technology in order to stay number one.
“Globally, the BPO market is predicted to reach $262.2 billion by 2022, with the Asia Pacific region receiving the lion’s share of growth at 8.5 percent. The BPO sector of the Philippines, which employs over 1.15 million people, is expected to capture 15 percent of the global outsourcing market in the next four years. The Philippines possesses a talented workforce with high English language proficiency that contributed to driving the BPO sector’s growth up until now.” He said via Manila Standard.
“At the same time, other Asian nations, including Malaysia and Vietnam, are also developing their own BPO industries, with Vietnam’s BPO industry achieving annual growth of more than 20 percent over the past decade – this competition will start to chip away at the Philippines’ position,” Agarwal added via Manila Standard.