FFE Magazine

Expats see the Philippines as the place to be

 

Two foreign executives of Transcom, a leading global outsourcing service provider, are bullish about the growth of the business process outsourcing industry in the Philippines, which has created a new middle class.

New Zealand native and Transcom executive Jason Lock has been in the Philippines for five years and says he has grown to love the country like his own. Lock, who holds the position of senior vice president for Transcom’s client delivery for North America and Asia, says his intention was to work for only two years in the country, but ended up staying much longer, which he enjoys to this day.

His decision, according to Lock, was influenced by both professional and personal reasons.”There’s nowhere else in this industry like anywhere else in the world, not China, India, US. This is where the action is. This is the forefront of all innovation, and change and growth and excitement if this is your chosen industry,” he says.

Lock has been with Transcom since July 2009. Prior to that, he worked with a different business process outsourcing firms in the Philippines. Lock says he decided to transfer to Transcom because of the company’s potential for growth at the time.

Lock believes the Philippine BPO industry will continue to grow. “The Philippines is unique in the world. Nowhere else in the world have you got such a large, English speaking, well educated, service-oriented, labor force, community, culture that can, because of the exchange rate, provide service to the rest of the world,” he says.

Lock considers the Philippines as his second home, especially as his daughter, his “little Filipina”, was born at the Makati Medical Center in 2010. “I love living in the Philippines, as a country that has so much to offer to the world,” he says.

Lock says his wife who works at the New Zealand embassy and his two boys also love their stay in the country.

“Rugby is one of my personal passions. It’s almost like a religion in New Zealand. We’ve gotten involved in the youth development of rugby in the Philippines and I coach a team comprised of 95 percent of Filipinos,” he says.

Meanwhile, Neil Rae, who joined Transcom in 2004, as a key account manager and has since accumulated significant experience in the organization, sees “something special” in the Philippines. “Part of the reason is not just tech, not just process, it’s truly our people, and our commitment is to be here in the Philippines,” he says.

Rae is now the regional general manager and executive vice president for North America and Asia.

Rae says the BPO industry has created the new middle class in the Philippines. “It’s more than just a job. If you compare the Philippines to North America, it’s a career here. It’s created the middle class. It has created something so powerful, I have not seen it globally. There’s a lot of factors, social, economic but if you strip that, it’s truly the people,” he says.

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