With the changing face of work today brought about by globalization, technological advancements, new ways of work arrangements including atypical forms of employment such as freelance work, fixed term employment, on-call work, home-work and telecommuting, are now becoming popular around the world, including the Philippines.
These are among the key findings at the Working World Trialogue entitled “Understanding New Forms of Work Arrangements: A Policy Discussion on Outsourcing, Offshoring, Remote Work,” organized by the Institute for Labor Studies at the Occupational Safety and Health Center.
“The face of work today is highly evolving with the advancement of technology and new frontiers in performing business processes. We are also witnessing a shift in the way employers and workers interact, including the way workplaces are run,” said Executive Director Cynthia R. Cruz of the Institute for Labor Studies.
Globalization has changed the way people do business today. Among the most prevalent change is the rise of the outsourcing phenomenon, where a process of one organization can already be performed at a distance by another organization. Globally, the Philippines is one of the top outsourcing destinations.
In a presentation during the Trialogue, the IT Business Process Association of the Philippines (IT-BPAP) reported that the Information Technology-Business Processing Outsourcing (IT-BPO) industry of the Philippines is expected to post a compound annual growth rate of 15%-20% over the next 5 years. It is expected to generate 1.3 million direct employment and 3.2 million indirect employment by 2016.
The IT-BPO industry of the Philippines is composed of the Voice BPO, Non-Voice BPO, ITO, Health Information Management and Care, Engineering Services, Animation and Game Development.
“These new forms of work arrangements open positive employment opportunities for the country, and successes have been found already in the business processing outsourcing industry. However much is still yet to be done in providing new solution sets to the problems brought about by these arrangements,” said Cruz.
In recent years the Philippines has become a hub of professionals working as teachers, virtual assistants, researchers, writers, encoders, transcriptionists among others, in a “work-from-home”, or “remote work” arrangement. In this employment arrangement, the employee (or individual contractor), through telecommuting, performs certain tasks furnished by the employer (or principal).
“It is important that we are aware of how these changes in work are affecting the world of work. At the core of these changes, it is essential that the requirements for decent work are present,” said Cruz.
Participants invited to the Trialogue were a mix of experts representing labor groups, employers’ organizations and government agencies. Speakers at the forum include representatives from the Information Technology Business Process Association of the Philippines, Federation of Free Workers, and the National Union of Builders and Construction Workers.
The ILS was created in 1987 through Executive Order No. 257. It organizes policy discussions using its own platform called ILS Working World Trialgoue. The Trialogue is a public forum of the ILS, where emerging and urgent labor and employment concerns and responses are discussed among stakeholders and experts. It is designed especially for labor and employment issues that involve multiple stakeholders and need fast-tracked solutions. Proceedings of this Working World Trialogue is available at www.ils.dole.gov.ph.
(For more information on this release please contact Mr. Zoren Amat, Senior Labor & Employment Officer of the Advocacy and Publication Division, Institute of Labor Studies, at 5273490/5273447)