The Department of Science and Technology (DOST), through the Information and Communications Technology Office (ICT Office), will be holding a series of Rural Impact Sourcing Workshops beginning this May to November. The first leg of the workshops will kick off on May 30, 2014, in Daet, Camarines Norte.

Carrying the theme “Digital Employment through Rural BPO for Inclusive Growth,” Rural Impact Sourcing is considered as outsourcing which focuses on providing meaningful jobs and other related opportunities in socio-economically disadvantaged areas, mostly rural areas of the country where there is high population but low employment due to lack of investors. Formerly known as “Socially Responsible Outsourcing,” Rural Impact Sourcing looks to generate economic and social impacts in these mentioned areas. Through the use of ICT, the program pushes forth the access to digital markets and Rural BPO’s as tools for job creation.

The Rural Impact Sourcing is part of a thrust by the ICT Office to contribute to the Philippine Development Plan 2011-2016’s pursuit of inclusive growth. The program supports Philippine government’s commitment to produce 1.3 million traditional IT-BPM jobs by 2016. According to Accenture’s “Exploring the Value Proposition of Impact Sourcing,” the global Business Process and Technology Outsourcing sector will grow to $674 billion by 2016 and Impact Sourcing is predicted to make up 11% of the BPO market in 2016.

As the Philippines have seen rapid growth and development of the IT-BPM industry in the last few years, it is in correlation that the industry has also become the country’s top career provider. With all the country’s growth and development however, there continues to be a growing disparity in opportunities between the country’s top cities and the untapped rural areas. Taking this in consideration, the Rural Impact Sourcing Program focuses to deliver these opportunities and take advantage of its human resources not just in the country’s known key cities but to its untapped rural areas as well.

The Rural Impact Sourcing takes on the challenge to train and develop its supply of potential Impact Sourcing workforces to ensure constant quality for the service that they can provide. On the other hand, it is also geared up to generate the demand for more outsourcing companies by striving to create an ecosystem within the prospect area that would provide benefits to such companies. DOST – ICT Office’s Executive Director Louis Napoleon Casambre states “The ICT Office continues to build on its efforts broadening the impact that the ICT industry presents. Rural Impact Sourcing presents to investors the benefits of having their operations in these strategic areas.” He adds, “This would generate more opportunities in these areas. Not only would it increase employment, it would also mean that the people from these areas no longer need to relocate to get employed. Instead, Rural Impact Sourcing brings the jobs directly to them.”

The workshops are set to be held in Daet, Koronadal, Kalibo, Surigao, and Calbayog. These workshops aim to boost awareness in these areas and provide the people knowledge on Rural Impact Sourcing. The first part of the Rural Impact Sourcing workshop in Daet will feature career talks from Presidents and CEOs of Impact Sourcing Providers namely Bert Barriga of Digisource Inc., Butch Valenzuela of VisayaKPO, and Jorge Azurin of Freelancer.ph. The second part will be a half-day workshop led by Online Job University’s founder, Genisis Reonico. The workshop will consist of topics such as general tools and applications to get you started with the skill sets to be offered and developed.

About DOST-ICT Office – The Information and Communications Technology Office of the Department of Science and Technology is the Philippine Government’s lead agency on ICT related matters. Its primary thrusts are in the ICT Industry Development, eGovernment, ICT policy development, Internet for all and Cybersecurity.

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