BPO’S – A Low Wage  Industry in Jamaica

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Jamaica News: We live a life of lies and deceit, that is the culture to an extent of our business sector and the BPO

Is just one industry that disrespect the labour hours worked by young people.

Chairman Byles comment about the low paying industry which is BPO is one with merit. What Mr. Byles forget to mention is that this industry not only employs underachievers but qualified university graduates at low wages because of the high unemployment in the island.

Private Sector can only employ maybe no more than 15 %  of school leavers including graduates of universities each year and government rarely add increases in two figures at the end of students tenure at colleges and universities. The fact is we are not expanding that much in economic growth and investment is limited in Jamaica. Forget about these construction jobs- they are seasonal and in many cases rotating jobs.

The BPO Industry knows very well the firms cannot operate in the USA and other developed countries Laws in these countries would not tolerate these low pages payable to their citizens. But let analyze the sector. It is a fast-growing sector in developing countries where English is the official language. It operates where government has liberalized the sector and where globalization has impacted.

However,  the sector makes no rational or comparable relationship between workers in developed countries and those in the so-called “Third  World.” With a colonial overbearing character BPO will and seek to operate where wages are low and profits can be repatriated easily. With this in mind can anyone point at a BPO which is paying workers more than $60, 000.00  per month. I doubt it. Maybe with overtime, they can make $80,000 per month. That makes the government a better paying sector than these private enterprises.

BPO’s income does not provide the incentive for loyalty, neither does a BPO reward an employee with adequate income for he/she to further his or her studies. Many of the university students at BPO are living hand to mouth and can barely pay their student loans. When they pay their student loans, they rarely have anything left to sustain them for the rest of the month. Talking to several ex-employees they are disgruntled and unhappy. This must be taking an effect by attrition but caught in the economy as is ours, people have to do what they have to do. This country is not a welfare state and nobody gives you anything so many at the entry level have no choice. The only winner in the BPO industry are the owners, the investors and the owners of big capital. It is tantamount to modern day
“sweatshop”. Those who get a little of the BPO pie are the managers such as The Human Resource Managers.

Mr. Byles has spoken his mind and was factual. This society needs to desist from its hypocrisy. We need frank and factual comments and opinions.

 

By: Maurice Christie

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