The Bacolod-Negros Occidental Federation for Information and Communications Technology is looking at pushing the ranking of Bacolod in Tholons Top 100 upward, by focusing more on projects in preparing the current labor market to be more adaptive to the new trends in technology, its president, John Dave Dueñas, said.
Tholons is scoring each city in the global standing based on talent, skills and quality, business catalyst, cost, infrastructure, risk and quality of life, digital transformation, skills and scalability, operations/cost, business environment, quality of life, digital and innovation.
These criteria, Dueñas said, are present in Bacolod to be able to create 30,000 seats of employment within the city and the province and with this, BNEFIT expects to grow it to 45,000 posts of employment by inviting more locators and investors.
“We also have a deep pool of talents for higher value jobs, such as creative services, financial services management, and also in healthcare information management (HIM) because we have so many graduates in healthcare courses and creative services,” Dueñas said.
He said that, last year, the ICT industry in Bacolod and Negros Occidental marked a successful year, with Tholons Global Index Ranking of Bacolod City in the Top 100 Cities leaping from 97 to Rank 89.
This means that the business environment in Bacolod is attractive to potential investors and ICT organization locators due to the business-friendliness of the local government unit, government transparency, incentives for new locators, strong infrastructure for ICT-related companies, and the availability of skills and talent in the locality, he explained.
BNEFIT has also observed that the cost of doing business in Bacolod and Negros Occidental is lower compared to other locations, the quality of life is better, electricity is cheaper, live/work/play balance, peace and order is way better, crime rates are low, with high literacy rate, and better English speakers of the manpower are also prevalent.
“Bacolod aspires to be one of the country’s creative hubs with a growing number of creative workers doing freelance or studio projects in animation, game development, and software development,” Dueñas said.
“Bacolod is awarded as the business-friendliest city in the country and our local executive is awarded as outstanding leader at the Asia Leaders Awards, and we wanted to capitalize on that,” he added.
The organization also aims to strengthen ties with three stakeholders, which are the government agencies, academe and industry players, to sustain growth in Bacolod and Negros.
This collaboration is significant for Bacolod and Negros Occidental as more locators and investors are eyed to sustain the reputation as a destination of choice for ICT-enabled opportunities, he said.
“Because of the effective cooperation of the ICT private companies, the academe, and the local government unit, the industry will be able to grow tremendously,” he said, adding “The effort is not singlehanded but collaborative in nature, and we owe it to the community for creating a positive atmosphere for the investors and locators.”*
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