Career & Education

BPO attracting top professionals — Malahoo Forte

Sunday, April 15, 2018

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MONTEGO BAY, St James (JIS) — St James MP Marlene Malahoo Forte has said that outside of tourism, BPO is the fastest-growing sector in the west and that it is attracting some of the top professionals in the country.

She noted the perception that the sector is only for low-skilled workers “couldn't be further from the truth”.

“There is also the perception that these workers are paid poorly, which also couldn't be further from the truth. The reality is that the BPO sector has real opportunities for professionals, in particular for lawyers, accountants, engineers, project managers and information technology professionals,” said Malahoo Forte, who represents St James West Central and is the country's attorney general.

She was speaking at the opening of the inaugural Outsource2Jamaica Symposium and Expo at Montego Bay Convention Centre here on Thursday.

Malahoo Forte noted that the BPO sector plays an important role in the national growth thrust and has “tremendous support at the highest level”. She siad, too, that all mechanisms are being put in place to ensure that there are suitably trained people to take advantage of the various opportunities in the rapidly growing industry.

“Over the next three years, the Government envisions to have some 200,000 persons prepared for the jobs that will be available in the BPO industry. An estimated 10,000 jobs were added to the sector last year, bringing the total to over 26,000 currently. This is an indication of its significance,” she said.

Malahoo Forte said the Government recognises the potential for even more growth and is committed to creating the kind of environment that will bring in the investors. She spoke of the knowledge process outsourcing sector, describing it as ripe for development and having more value added activities.

“These activities include application and software development, market research, and data analysis and information technology managed service.

“As a Government, we are looking to the legal process outsourcing shared services and also medical process outsourcing. We have been engaged with several international shared services operators and also legal process outsourcing operators. We have been encouraging them to expand to Jamaica,” Malahoo Forte said.

The two-day Outsource2Jamaica Symposium and Expo is organised by the Business Process Industry Association of Jamaica in collaboration with JAMPRO and other partners.

It is designed to raise the profile of Jamaica as a BPO destination.

“[It] presents a unique opportunity to display our progress and to show how far we have come as it relates to information technology,” the MP said.

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