Freeman Cebu Business

Constant collaboration leads to productivity

FULL DISCLOSURE - Fidel O. Abalos - The Freeman

Today, all eyes in the world are trained on one direction, the presidential election in the United States of America (USA). Being the world’s largest economy, it truly deserves the attention it gets. 

True enough, this is their domestic affair and the American citizens (whether for Trump or Biden) might even say, it is none of our business. The truth is, it is. Why? In us, for instance, certain business sectors, depending on who wins, will be affected. 

On one hand, a Trump win could mean a bane in our business process outsourcing (BPO) or knowledge process outsourcing (KPO). Lest we might forget, one of Trump’s favorite slogans is “America first.” As the slogan suggests, it talks about foreign policy. To some extent, it could mean “insourcing” (as supposed to outsourcing) or bringing jobs back to the USA.   

Seriously, if he wins and does that, our outsourcing industry (both BPOs and KPOs) might be in peril. Unlike American-owned manufacturing plants (with billions or millions of capital expenditures in permanent structures) that have been here for years, it is easy to uproot and transfer BPO and KPO operations back to the USA. Moreover, Trump cut the corporate income tax rate during his term. In fact, to please his supporters, he may encourage investors to bring back jobs to the USA by offering more incentives. 

On the other hand, a Biden win could be a boon in the outsourcing industry. Probably, to some extent, of the manufacturing industry as well. Remember, during the campaign, Biden promised to raise corporate income tax rate. Therefore, American companies might even think of expanding their operations outside of the USA (maybe here). 

Furthermore, Biden also promised that he will raise the minimum wage from US$7.25 per hour to US$15.00.  In our currency, that would result to P750.00 (at P50.00 to a dollar) per hour or P6,000.00 (8-hour a day work) per day. Comparatively, given our pay scale that would mean the cost of operating their businesses here will be a lot cheaper. Therefore, with the quality of our workforce in these industries at par with the rest of the world, we maynot only keep whatever we have right now, these industries might even attract more companies from the USA.

As more advanced technologies become available, transferring their operations are possible. In fact, they can do so with so much ease. To recall, on top of the already available operational software, we have singled out several applications that are in use and can be used to address the other business concerns, like the need to communicate. 

Notably, as far as communication is concerned, we’ve already discussed how the conduct of meetings have evolved. From the synchronous in person meeting, to synchronous virtual meetings (like, Zoom), then, to asynchronous virtual meetings (like, Loom and Comeet). With these apps, transitioning from working in traditional offices to remote work or telework have been smooth and easy.

However, while it is true that transitioning was easy, last week, we also stressed one significant downside in teleworking. Particularly, those of the young professionals missing the benefits of working side by side (physically) with more experienced officemates for guidance.   

Just this week though, as we tried to look for ways to address the young professionals’ legitimate concerns, we came across with an app that will surely address it. It is called Remotion.  It is an app that put premium on collaboration. A kind of collaboration that happens where workmates are all physically present in one workplace though physically they are thousands of miles away.

It is built based on the premise that “collaboration is best face-to-face.” That brilliant ideas will just come out unexpectedlyeither in solitude or during a casual conversation.  Probably, so interesting and promising that oneneeds to poke someone (as if he is just right beside physically) he knowswho can further enhance or reinforce such an idea at that very moment.

Actually, Remotion offers that opportunity to collaborate instantly.  It is a “quick video chat app that puts your team on your desktop so you can see who’s free and jump into lightweight video chats.” This is possible as the app gives the team members the opportunity to let everyone know what he is up to or his work status at the very moment. One may say, he is open for a conversation, can accept questions, so preoccupied and not available, etc. Therefore, a team member in need won’t hesitate to poke the person he will seek some helpwith if he is available for a talk. That simple.

Truly revolutionary, the team will always be together and collaborate when needed wherever they may be in the world, every second of the day. The end result, increased productivity.

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