Labor and Employment Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz yesterday expressed confidence that the country’s burgeoning business process outsourcing sector will even more attract foreign investments that will create thousands of decent and productive jobs with the DOLE’s and Information Technology-Business Process Association of the Philippines’s partnership agreement and joint action plan moving at a faster pace.
Commenting to the report of Executive Director Ma. Teresita Cucueco, M.D. on the progress of the DOLE-IBPAP joint action plan, Baldoz said:
“It is heartwarming to know that the agreement of the DOLE and the IBPAP is right on focus: addressing the concerns of the BPO sector on Labor Laws and Occupational Safety and Health Standards compliance.”
Director Cucueco reported the other day that DOLE-IBPAP technical working committee had conducted follow through activities to implement the action plan specified in the Memorandum of Agreement signed by Secretary Baldoz and IBPAP President Jose Mari Mercado last year.
“We have already conducted six orientation sessions on general labor and occupational safety and health laws module for 146 IBPAP member companies since June last year, the latest of which was on 16 February where officers, human resource development officers, and safety officers attended. We have included in the orientation module a four-hour discussion on alternative dispute resolution system using industry-specific situational cases,” reported Cucueco.
“The number is already 50 percent of the 288 IBPAP members,” she added.
The DOLE-IBPAP agreement aims to build a culture of voluntary compliance with GLS and OSHS among the BPO sector by the end of 2015, and this, according to Baldoz, is right on target.
Cucueco reported that satisfaction with the orientation sessions—which covered LLCS overview, General Labor Laws, Occupational Safety and Health Standards, and Alternative Dispute Resolution System—both in their value and effectiveness of the speakers were “very good”.
To complement the orientation, the DOLE had also developed information, education, and communication materials on GLS, OSHS and labor relations, which have been distributed and shared with all IBPAP members.
“These resources include many materials available in the DOLE website, including copies of the applicable laws, regulations, guidelines, templates, lists of consultants/accredited safety personnel, and the like,” Cucueco said.
Another goal of the DOLE-IBPAP agreement is to develop a body of information on GLS, OSHS, and labor relations situations in the IT-BPM industry to serve as a baseline for future monitoring of progress of actions taken under the joint action plan.
Another report of the Bureau of Working Conditions shows that as of December 2014, a total 171, or 70 percent, of 244 IBPAP members have completed joint assessment. Of the 171 members assessed, 96, or 56 percent, had no violations, and 30 IBPAP members have been issued certificates of compliance.
“The joint assessment results for most of these companies are undergoing validation by DOLE-NCR,” said BWC Executive Director Catherine Legados-Parado.
Reporting on the way forward, Director Cucueco said the technical working group will soon meet again to bring non-IBPAP members to the orientation sessions scheduled this year; to prepare other IEC materials for use by BPOs based on the needs gathered during the orientation sessions; and to develop BPO-specific, mandatory OSH training courses.
Baldoz lauded the IBPAP for its serious and active partnership with the DOLE in implementing the agreement, and assured the industry that the DOEL will continue to assist companies that need to improve their compliances to GLS and OSHS until these companies are ready to be re-evaluated as part of the COC awarding process.