News : DOLE, IT-BPAP to Ink 2-year Voluntary Action Plan
Manila, April 23, 2014 -- In a move to address labor issues in the call center sector, Labor Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz and Jose Mari Mercado, president of the Information Technology-Business Processing Association of the Philippines (IT-BPAP), are scheduled to sign on Friday a landmark partnership agreement and a two-year joint action plan for its workers.
Under the agreement, the Department of Labor and Employment and the IT-BPAP will implement a two-year joint action plan to promote IT-BPM best people practices and voluntary compliance with general labor standards (GLS) and occupational safety and health (OSHS).
Due to the nature of their work, many call center workers, who work mostly at night, encounter various health problems and social and personnel issues unique to the industry.
The agreement will kick-off with an orientation of IT-BPAP members on labor law compliance and occupational safety and health standards this April. Both parties shall create a technical working committee (TWG) for the immediate implementation of the action plan until 31 December 2015.
Other strategies and activities in the action plan are the development of information and education materials; joint assessment on IT-BPAP establishments; surveys on occupational safety and health compliance; and compilation of relevant industry-specific information for future monitoring progress of the plan.
"This action plan is just the beginning of our long-term goal of addressing the real labor relations situation in the BPO industry," the DOLE chief said.
In an announcement, Baldoz said DOLE will build a partnership with IT-BPAP to ensure its involvement, as a DOLE social partner, in realizing decent and productive work through business expansion and growth.
"This is a proactive step to ensure the rights and benefits, including the safety and health, of workers in the information technology and business process management," she said.
The IT-BPAP generated over 700,000 direct employment and 1.6 million indirect employment in 2012, DOLE said in its news release. The sector earned more than US$13 billion in export revenues, or 5.5 percent of gross domestic product, enabling the country to surpass India in voice global IT-business process management (IT-BPM) work, thus making the Philippine call center industry the largest in the world.
For his part, Mercado said the IT-BPAP’s roadmap has identified growth opportunities for developing high-value export IT-BPM analytics, research, and development in areas such as medical research and health care; engineering and high technology; creatives; and financial and banking services, which are being delivered by its members to diverse markets in Europe, Australia, and Asia Pacific.
Posted by Veronica Silva Cusi, news correspondent
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About Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines:
BPAP is the umbrella association for the IT-BPO and GIC (Global In-House Center) industry in the Philippines. BPAP serves as the one-stop information and advocacy gateway for the industry.
About Department of Labor and Employment:
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