The Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) admitted that the pandemic has severely affected the economy with its adverse effects. However, the Department of Finance (DOF) is seeing a gradual and phased recovery. This is as business operations are back after the long quarantine periods and a recently conducted two-week lockdown. Fears for a new surge in the COVID-19 patients were also expressed by the University of the Philippines ‘ academic sector as they see this as a premature easement. To manage these fears within the workplace, a set of guidelines was then released to ease worries.
A Supplemental Guidelines on the workplace Prevention and Control of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (Joint Memorandum Circular No. (JCM) No. 20-04) was released by the Department of Labor and Employment and the Department of Trade and Industry. It aims to provide instructions for business owners for provisions such as employee shuttle service, disinfection and washing resources, handwashing stations, and social distancing standards. The JMC also deals with COVID testing methods and frequency.
One of the strong runners in the Philippine economy is the BPO sector that has not stopped operations even at the height of the pandemic. they are adapting to the ‘new normal’ or home-based. TaskUs announced that they are letting their global workforce to Work From Home (WFH) until the end of this year. Another BPO company Concentrix has launched a Work-At-Home Platform SecureCX that supports customer experience and remote working. It monitors productivity technologies including facial recognition for authentication, monitoring of phone use, shoulder surfing, and more.
That is why companies from different parts of the country have done been doing their part to follow the JMC given. Bacolod city Local government has been conducting random inspections to BPO companies to ensure policy compliance for they are considered as a vital force in the local economy. Meanwhile, property giant Megaworld Corporation has been offering much rent relief for struggling BPO tenants. However, it has not been all good in the local BPO industry. There are several issues that BPO giants are facing here in the Philippines. Rest assured that the government and its agencies are doing their best to attend to these matters to continue safe and honest operations.
Even with the major downfalls and mishaps that surround the BPO industry, many still believe that it will help provide jobs to those who have been laid off. According to the Social Weather Stations (SWS), survey adult joblessness in the country has hit a record-high of 45.5% in July of this year. This is equivalent to 27.3 million Filipinos. That is why different agencies must be taking a step to protect workers and provide a healthier and safer working environment. In hopes to help lessen unemployment and help the economy recover.