A global recruitment firm is placing its bets on the country’s young and tech-literate population as a springboard to economic rebound.

Global recruitment firm Michael Page has set up an office in Manila to tap what it sees as a vast untapped pool of e-commerce Philippines and technology talent.

According to the firm, the young population has aspiring entrepreneurs (average age 24.4, with high digital literacy), and the technology and digital sectors in the Philippines are well-placed to create employment opportunities for the upcoming generation of working professionals in the country.

Observed Olly Riches, Board Director, Michael Page South East Asia, who remains optimistic about the untapped potential in Filipino talent: “Looking at industries in the Philippines with high growth potential in the next few years, it is clear why the economy is well-poised for recovery. Manufacturing, including supply chain and 3PL is a major growth area, and the consumer market, despite the lockdown and other challenges, has remained robust. This includes retail, food and beverages and fast-moving consumer goods.”

British Ambassador, Daniel Pruce has commented: “In 2020, as in many countries, that growth has slowed down. COVID-19 and the stringent lockdown have had a real effect on the economy in the first half of the year. However, the Philippines has the ability to bounce back. It has solid foundations rooted in an historically-stable job market and a competitive workforce. In fact, the many talents and the resilience of the people of the Philippines are among the major reasons why the Philippines possesses such high prospects despite the setbacks of recent months.”  

Welcoming returning Filipinos

Resilient and hardworking, the workforce in the Philippines is one of the biggest assets the country has. Among professionals in the workforce, there is a large population of bilingual English-speaking professionals and a large number of university graduates.

Said Carla Lastimosa, Director, Michael Page Philippines: “There is interest in doing business in the Philippines due to the very strong talent here. We produce a lot of technical experts, such as engineers and healthcare professionals, among other skilled professionals. As a result, more MNCs are being drawn to investments and local conglomerates are tapping into expansion opportunities within the country for years to come.”

Lastimosa said her firm is seeing more overseas Filipino professionals returning home to continue building their careers. This has created increased confidence in local employers of a healthy rebound for the economy. In view of this rising trend, and by leveraging the Michael Page global network, top talent and investments are returning to the country. “The launch of our Bayanihan Tulay sa Tagumpay campaign will build the bridge and create the opportunities required to successfully find returning Filipinos employment,” she said.

As one of the five high-growth regions in South East Asia, the Philippines has a dynamic economy, according to IMF 2019 estimates, which cited the country’s 5.9% GDP growth rate.

Riches is equally optimistic: “While many companies already have back office operations in the Philippines, we want to build upon the enormous potential beyond that. With (our) office opening, we aim to foster long-term partnerships on the ground, and nurture the best talent here to build on the local opportunities that exist.”