PH overtakes India as world’s call center hub

In a feature article, The New York Times writer Bikas Bajaj reports: "More Filipinos-about 400,000-than Indians now spend their nights talking to mostly American consumers, industry officials said, as companies like AT&T, JPMorgan Chase, and Expedia have hired call centers here, or built their own. The jobs have come from the United States, Europe and, to some extent, India as outsourcers followed their clients to India as outsourcers followed their clients to the Philippines. "

In a feature article, The New York Times writer Vikas Bajaj reports: "More Filipinos-about 400,000-than Indians now spend their nights talking to mostly American consumers, industry officials said, as companies like AT&T, JPMorgan Chase, and Expedia have hired call centers here, or built their own. The jobs have come from the United States, Europe and, to some extent, India as outsourcers followed their clients to India as outsourcers followed their clients to the Philippines. "

Bajaj cited Jojo Uligan, executive director of the Contact Center Association of the Philippines, who says that "the Philippines overtook India this year."

 

Bajaj went on to explain: "Filipino call center agents typically earn more than their Indian counterparts ($300 a month, rather than $250, at the entry level), but executives say they are worth the extra cost because American customers find them easier to understand than they do Indian agents, who speak British-style English."

Bajaj added:  "Analysts said call centers in the Philippines appeared to have helped American businesses respond to complaints from consumers who said they could not understand Indian agents."

 

However, this does not mean that Filipino call center agents should be complacent. Bajaj highlighted the fact that some compnaies like Delta Airlines have said "they moved call centers back to the United States to appease angry customers who wanted better English."

 

Bajaj noted: "Entry-level American call center agents earn about $20,000 a year, about five times as much as similar agents in the Philippines and six times as much as Indian agents."

 

For more on this story, log on to NYTimes.com.

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