If there is one thing that the world has learned over the past 12 months, COVID-19 is here to stay. It is not going anywhere, and until vaccines are rolled out globally, we are going to have to continue working in a highly unpredictable and ever-changing business environment.
Keeping this in mind, it is worth highlighting how much progress has been made in how businesses now operate since the pandemic began. The world is leveraging digital communications technology more than ever before, and the viability of remote workforces is better than ever.
The BPO industry has adapted rapidly, and effectively, to the COVID-19 environment. GBSS were already very well positioned to adapt given how technology-enabled the sector is, however, the speed at which we had to change the way we worked and still offer our clients reliable and cost-effective service was alarming.
Health and Safety
The BPO industry is one of the pillars of the Filipino economy, and such, there has been significant investment in ensuring it gets back to full capacity as quickly as possible. Over the past year, it has been great to see significant investments in implementing robust health and safety protocols at a government level to ensure the well-being of all Filipino residents.
At a company level, GBSS been investing in strong and focused communications on the importance of practising a high level of hygiene (at home and in the community), as well as adhering to any government-mandated protocols.
Working From Home
When the lockdown was first implemented, the BPO industry had to react swiftly, with many team members having to work from their homes. This required them to have at home workplaces set up, connectivity established, and tools to ensure productivity was maintained for all of our clients.
This has been one of the most challenging issues the industry has faced – relying on the local infrastructure BPO workers have in their local provinces. The GBSS team has to ramp up our IT support and monitoring significantly to ensure productivity and effectiveness is maintained.
Our state-of-the-art facilities are located within Metro regions, ensuring all team members have access to HR and IT support, high-quality internet infrastructure, and not being subject to connectivity or power issues (which are routine in rural areas where many workers are based).
Despite these issues, we have found that staff have adapted to working from home well, however, we are looking forward to welcoming them all back to the office as soon as it is safe and practical to do so.
The Path to Recovery
We’re happy to see that the Government is taking the vaccine program very seriously, with very high levels of vaccination occurring especially in Metro Manilla (our offices being located within Taguig). The sooner BPO workers are vaccinated, the sooner they are able to safely commute and work within metro regions. It is important to note, however, that many BPO workers do not reside in metro regions and are more likely to be located in rural areas (commuting in). The recovery will be dependent on how effective vaccination programs are in these regions.
We’re very optimistic at this stage that we are on the right path, and currently, we have been experiencing great demand for offshore workers, especially given many countries are experiencing significant talent drains with international borders remaining closed (especially in Australia).
If you are finding it difficult to recruit locally, please get in touch. We at GBSS would love to assist you in finding the right talent for your business in this COVID environment.