Friday 25 September, 2020

Jampro targets Increased BPO investment

The Jamaica Promotions Corporation (JAMPRO) has been coordinating various initiatives aimed at strengthening the local business process outsourcing (BPO) sector to make it a major contributor to economic growth and job creation.

Speaking with JIS News, President of JAMPRO, Diane Edwards, said that the activities and initiatives are intended to provide an additional 11,000 BPO jobs for this fiscal year. Some 26,000 persons are currently employed to the sector.

“Our efforts include promoting Jamaica as a destination for BPO for international companies that are seeking to locate their outsourcing services around the world or preferably near to the United States,” she noted.

Edwards said that fiscal incentives and government policy framework are being considered as a means of increasing Jamaica’s attractiveness as a BPO destination.

The agency is also working on identifying and providing suitable real estate for investors who want to start or expand operations.

Recently (October 19 to 21), JAMPRO hosted an investment promotion mission to introduce investors to the business opportunities available in Jamaica for the BPO sector.

Over the three days, senior BPO and contact centre decision makers met with stakeholders in both the public and private sectors and conducted site visits at BPO spaces ready for investment.

“This mission gave us the opportunity to promote the country on home soil and gave investors a chance to discover firsthand, the key advantages of the Jamaican talent pool.  Jamaica has all the ingredients to become the nearshore centre of the future, if we continue to upskill our labour force, to ensure (workers) are equipped to tackle next generation BPO operations,” the President said.

To further build and increase the human capacity, the agency will be spearheading a BPO Career Fair on Friday, November 3 at the University of Technology (UTech) St. Andrew.

The event will serve as a recruitment exercise for local BPO operators and will include sessions on training and personal development.

Participants will benefit from information on the BPO industry in Jamaica and career opportunities.

“People think that BPO is just customer service but it is a lot more than that as we are doing work for the health service, such as medical and insurance claims processing; we also do debt collection, bank and credit card applications and finance and accounting work,” Edwards noted.

“I advise persons to study the industry, do your research, find your niche and find something that you can offer that is different as there are so many possibilities that exist,” the President added.

With an estimated spend of US$323 million in 2016, the information communication technology (ICT)/BPO sector is a high-performing segment of Jamaica’s services industry and has enjoyed the highest employment growth rate of any sector in the last decade.

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