ZICT Council brings jobs to Zamboanga City PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 26 August 2013 00:00

Zamboanga City is ripe for the ICT-BPO industry, according to the Zamboanga ICT (ZICT) Council. In demonstration, the Council has initiated a mobile game development training last July 16 to August 2, 2013—the first of its kind in the country. 20 computer programmers, students, and teachers from various universities in the city took part in this 20-day intensive industry training.

This endeavor was initiated by the Zamboanga ICT Council and held jointly with the efforts of the Department of Science and Technology Region IX (DOST-IX), DOST- Information and Communications Technology Office (ICTO), and the Game Developers Association of the Philippines (GDAP). The training was led by Shelly Kero of Job and Esther Technologies. Job and Esther Technologies is one of the world-leading companies in developing cross-platform technologies for mobile applications such as iOS, Android, Windows, Blackberry, and HTML5. These demonstrate that “ZICT works with the best,” quoted ZICT Council Secretary Maureene Bello. GDAP President “Emperor” Alvin Juban, one of the game development pioneers in the country, joined the opening and concluding activities.

Not one to stop there, the Zamboanga ICT Council continues to forge ties with other agencies to make Zamboanga City the premiere ICT-BPO hub in Mindanao. The mobile game development training is only part of the big picture in improving the economic landscape of the region and bring in high-paying jobs for Zamboangueños.

The Zamboanga ICT Council is a consortium of private and public individuals and groups who seek to “bring the jobs here” instead of seeing young Zamboangueños leave the city in search of greener pastures and career growth. With target revenues of US$ 16 Billion for 2013, the Information and Communications Technology- Business Process Outsourcing (ICT-BPO) industry is a robust business to tap into. The more than 700,000 jobs generated in that industry ensures that Zamboanga City has nothing to lose and a lot to gain.

The mobile game development is just the tip of the iceberg. With its conclusion, the next stage begins: the Techno-Business Incubation (TBI) Project. This endeavor provides start-ups, such as the newly-hatched game developers, with equipment, working space, as well as industry support and linkages while they come up with viable and compelling business plans for their technological services and products.

This non-profit organization is accredited by the Zamboanga City Council and is presently trying to engage the new administration to in its initiatives. Taking Zamboanga City into the Next Wave Cities, a list of cities that ICT-BPO locators refer to when they want to open call centers, is one of the Zamboanga ICT Council’s priorities. The challenge for Zamboangueños is to equip themselves with the right skills to work in the ICT-BPO industry: a good command of the English language and the willingness to learn.

With the success of the mobile game development training, other related industries, such as HIMOAP (Health Information Management Outsourcing Association of the Philippines) and the Animation Council of the Philippines, Inc. (ACPI),  have expressed their interest in conducting similar training in the city. The Zamboanga ICT Council is preparing to go into talks with them.

By Dante Corteza

Philippians 2:4. “Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.”