With the local IT and Business Process Management (IT-BPM) industry experiencing a “ talent demand-supply gap,” which according to a study by Kearney might grow to 300,000–400,000 by 2028 if left unchecked, Capital One Philippines reiterates its strong commitment to and maintains high importance for the future of the next generation through education. By advocating transformative education, the company seeks to address the demand-supply challenges within the IT-BPM industry.

Capital One

Through its community education initiative, Contact Center Readiness Program (CCRP), a nine-month program in partnership with Tuloy Foundation, Capital One Philippines teaches students basic proficiency and other capabilities needed for entry-level positions in the IT-BPM industry.

JP Paperman and Kaneth Santiago of Capital One Philippines shared their thoughts on the industry talent gap, on education, and how the CCRP can help address this issue.

On addressing the talent gap

Over the years, the Philippine IT-BPM industry has grown exponentially – attributed to top notch customer service and hospitality Filipinos are known for.

Capital One Philippines’ Head of Operations, JP Paperman says, “The Philippines is a hub for customer experience due to its strong foundation that translates well in our industry. The country’s proficiency in English is noteworthy, and we must continue investing in it. To ensure growth, we must identify the opportunities at a global scale and work towards achieving them.”

“Like many others, I naturally gravitate towards integrating the benefits of emerging and evolving technology seamlessly into the passion and Malasakit that we already have. By doing that transformation, incorporating technology with the heart will put us in a place where there is no other footprint in the world that will compete with our workforce regarding future readiness,” he added.

Capital One Philippines’ Director for Strategy and Community, Kaneth Santiago believes that we must find ways to make entry to the IT-BPM industry easier for new hires by incorporating soft skills in the current curriculum. “Education equips us with skill sets to prepare us to join the workforce, but it can be a disservice to future employees if they have to go through the same struggles we did.”

“Take, for instance, my experience in a contact center that dealt with American culture. Understanding customer queries, responses, and terminologies was a challenge. It was crucial to learn how to navigate through these challenges, including grasping the varying concepts of regions like the US, UK, or Australia. Education transformation does not require a complete overhaul. Instead, we can enhance it by integrating skills required in the workplace with the current education system. The focus should be on developing communication, business, and financial skills along with soft skills like persuasion, and de-escalation. Providing access to these skills will enable the youth to succeed in their workplace quickly.”

On the impact of the CCRP

The Contact Center Readiness Program is one of the flagship social investment programs of Capital One Philippines, strengthening its commitment to tap and maximize Filipino talent and generate more job opportunities for the industry.

Kaneth believes that the CCRP can help transform and bridge the gap between the supply and the demand or need of the organization and the (IT-BPM) industry. “One important goal to focus on is establishing clear criteria for hiring individuals in the contact center industry. Imagine a future where all contact centers can employ individuals with a CCRP certification, even if they lack BPO or contact center experience or a college degree. As a result, this would expand the talent pool and encourage more people to consider this field.”

She adds, “In my opinion, democratizing the program is crucial. The government and more organizations can help make it more accessible across the country beyond just the metro areas. Doing so would allow more youths to receive training and become part of the contact center industry in a shorter period.”

For JP, integrating the CCRP into their plans for the future is something organizations should consider.  “Through the CCRP, we offer opportunities to highly motivated and talented individuals who require a unique form of investment early on to help them unlock their potential. By doing so, we gain access to gifted individuals, which, in turn, becomes a return of investment. CCRP is an excellent example of how this concept of “train and retain” works, as it has helped us discover some genuinely exceptional gems of talent.”

Kaneth adds, “We invite contact centers, IT-BPM shareholders, the academe, and the government to support the CCRP and help shape the next generation of workers for the industry’s continued growth.”

Advocating for Education

Capital One Philippines strives to bring its values of Excellence and Doing the Right Thing, and Investing For Good to life in everything it does. The organization believes that by investing in the community, businesses can establish vibrant neighborhoods and nurture an inclusive society. Capital One Philippines is committed and determined to enable genuine transformation and progress by investing in the future of the Filipinos through the IT-BPM industry and their work in the CCRP.

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