Tue | Apr 23, 2019

Wheatley projects BPO sector value to soar to US$750M by 2020

Published:Sunday | April 15, 2018 | 11:03 AM
Workers at a business process outsourcing centre in Jamaica.

Technology Minister Dr Andrew Wheatley is projecting that the value of the local business process outsourcing sector (BPO) could reach US$750 million by 2020.

The Jamaican BPO sector is currently valued at more than US$400 million.

“Over the years, we have seen tremendous growth in the local sector, boasting a compound annual growth rate of 20 per cent per annum,” he said.

“Employment figures have more than doubled when compared to 2007. The BPO sector is now employing over 26, 000 persons island-wide. Within the sector, we have approximately 60 firms operating, including several industry heavyweights such as Xerox, Teleperformance, Sutherland Global Services, Alorica, HGS and Startek,” he noted further.

Wheatley was delivering the keynote address on the final day of the Outsource2Jamaica Symposium and Expo at the Montego Bay Convention Centre, St James on April 13.

He noted, however, that there were still too many persons who are in the dark about the opportunities that the sector presents, pointing out that BPO is more than call centre operations.

“BPO is much more than that and its value, both locally and internationally, exceeds what most persons know or expect from the sector,” he said.

He pointed out that locally, the sector provides a wide range of services spanning medical, legal, financial, information communication technology (ICT), human resources, among others.

Wheatley said he was very pleased that Jamaica has become an integral part of “a global movement” in outsourcing, an area, which he said, has been steadily becoming the preferred choice for many firms.

“At a global level, the sector is projected to reach US$262.2 billion by 2022 driven by cost benefits achieved by outsourcing back-office administration, the development of new generation technologies such as process automation, big data analytics, Business Process as a Service (BPaaS) and embedded analytics-based BPO,” he explained.

“Growing competitiveness of global markets and the ensuing pressure on businesses to run efficiently and ensure cost effectiveness is providing opportunities for accelerated growth in BPO services,” he said.

The technology minister said he was also heartened by a recent study conducted with companies involved in outsourcing, which revealed that the sector is expected to see growth across all functions surveyed, particularly IT, finance, and HR.

Jamaica, he contended, was in a good position to benefit from expansion in these services.

The Outsource2Jamaica Symposium and Expo was put on by the Business Process Industry Association of Jamaica (BPIAJ) and its members and partners, including JAMPRO.

It was held from April 12-13 to provide a platform to raise the profile of Jamaica as a BPO destination.