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City hall, CIB.O team up as talent shortage looms

CEBU, Philippines - The Cebu City government and Cebu IT/BPM Organization (CIB.O) are joining forces to prevent the anticipated talent shortage from happening in the next two years.

"In the next two years, we will not have college graduates who will supposedly sustain the employment needs of industries, especially in the fast growing IT and Business Process Management sector," said CIB.O managing director Wilfredo Sa-a Jr., announcing that a series of Career Caravan will be held in both public and private schools in Cebu province to convince senior high school students to consider applying in the outsourcing and call center companies after graduation.

Initially, CIB.O and the office of councilor Joy Young, head of the Cebu City School Board mounted a career caravan that started since July 17 and ended in the first week of August, covering the major public high schools in the City encouraging students to join the call center industry after graduation.

The program is also aided by the existing Learning English Application for Pinoys (LEAP) among 27 Senior High Schools in Cebu City under the City School Board, DepEd, DICT and CIB.O.

A partnership of Apas National High School with Convergys is already running.

By September, CIB.O and the Cebu City government will mount another round of Career Caravan, covering more schools within the City, probably including some private schools.

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The IT/BPM sector in Cebu is currently employing a total of 140 thousand people earning from P15,000 (entry level). In the next two years, the sector is seen to need close to 30 thousand new people to accommodate the projected growth of a least 10 percent a year.

CIB.O is also inviting more call center companies to join the program, or directly partner with schools to avoid the foreseen shortage problem.

LEAP, a government-funded software aimed at improving the oral communication skill of students, is a 40-hour self-based training program that will be installed in the computer laboratories of schools.

Interested senior high school students can access this free training program.

According to Sa-a, senior high school graduates can be employed in a call center company, at the same time pursue their college plans.

The Cebu City government targets to hit 200 thousand employment mark in the IT/BPM sector by 2019. (FREEMAN)

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