Just recently, the Philippines, having around 400,000 call center agents overtook BPO giant India by a 50,000 margin. This is a huge feat considering that the tiny island only has a tenth of India’s population.
Also, according to IBM’s most recent Global Investment Locations Database, the Philippines has usurped India in terms of being the destination of choice for business support services by quite a large extent. Businesses worldwide favor the Philippines because of its workforce’s high level English, Westernized culture, great adaptability, and low labor costs. To top it off, the Philippine government has created attractive tax incentives for BPO firms – Six to eight year tax holidays as one example.
Philippines vs India, IBM’s report stats -
The average Filipino call center agent is able to communicate with only a lightly inflected American accent compared to the average Indian’s heavily accented British tone. This is a critical factor among American accounts since customers relate better to customer service representatives who are actually Americans or at least sound like one.
Another key component is the Filipino culture’s closely knit relationship with American culture. The Philippines was once an American colony, and thus, Filipinos in general are able to instinctively adapt to US norms.
Filipinos are also known to be very good problem solvers and quick thinkers; experienced call center agents from the Philippines are able to handle delicate and high pressure conversations with ease. Due to their naturally friendly demeanor, Filipinos always try to please and would always want to end calls wherein both parties are in good terms.
The Philippine government supports their dollar-earning investors by implementing tax exemptions and tax breaks. This is highly favorable for new companies who want to earn as much as possible so as to root themselves better in the highly competitive BPO industry. Who wouldn’t want six or even eight years of running a business without paying taxes?