ZICTC - “Build Local, Go Global” PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 09 December 2013 10:52

Great knowledge brings more opportunities - this is what I learned with my long chat last Saturday night with Mau Bello, the secretary of the Zamboanga City – ICT (Information Communication Technology) Council or ZICTC, for a starter.  It rose when I asked her point blank – what will be the benefits of our city from the different engagements or projects of the ZICTC.

Since last year, ZICTC under the helm of its president Louell Saavedra have been scouting, training local IT graduates and teachers in partnership with reputable IT (Information Technology) companies and organizations from Manila.  Together, they are discovering local talents for software and gaming development, call centers, IT engineering, and other manpower badly needed by the IT industry worldwide.

I openly expressed my thoughts to Mau particularly on the probability of the mass immigration of our good and competent local IT graduates in other places because of the current peace and order crisis in our city. As a business consultant in one IT school, I learned they can earn between P100,000 to P200,000 or more in Manila or abroad which no local Zamboanga companies can afford to pay.   Mau agreed with this fact, but there is a gold mine in IT for our city, she said. (We shied away from the peace and order issue, and hope local authorities can find the ultimate solutions.)

ZICTC firmly believes once our city can produced many and competent local IT talents, they will prefer to work here and be with their loved ones and friends, Mau said. For now, she shared, there are already local IT graduates working happily at their comfort of their homes and earning between P30,000 to P50,000 a month. And they can earn more if they upgrade their knowledge, she revealed. This is where the council can help, she enthused.

ZICTC aims to make our city one of the preferred source of IT talents, outsource them (this means they work here for companies based in Manila or in other countries, no need to leave the city),and at the same time, invite IT companies to set up in Zamboanga City where the cost of putting up a business is lower. ZamboEcozone, for one, is supporting the growth of the IT industry with low rental rate and tax-free incentive offer among others.

Mau said it right with this phrase, “Build Local, Go Global.” Increase local knowledge will produce skilled local IT people who will earn global standard dollar rates in our local shore, she beamed.  For now, more and more outside IT partners are supporting the advocacy and moves of the Zamboanga ICT Council by transferring technology and sharing latest ICT education.

Last November 27 and 28, ZICTC organized the Zamboanga ICT Conference 2013 and ICT Forum. The event with the theme “Experience IT, Experience it in Zamboanga” was in partnership with Job and Esther (J&E) Technologies.  150 graduates from STI Zamboanga, Southern City Colleges, AMA Computer Colleges, Universidad de Zamboanga and Western Mindanao State University were given their completion of EQELA mobile software development after undergoing training from J &E.

More than 500 participants also attended the ICT Conference at Garden Orchid Convention Center and during the ICT Forum in Centro Latino. Students, teachers, government and professionals listened to resource speakers from the IT Industry of mobile development, start-up community and outsourcing.

The esteemed resource speakers were Markku Kero, CEO of Job and Esther Technologies, Tina Amper, founder of TechTalks.ph, and Organizer of Geeks on a Beach 2013 Conference, and Ron Cirujano, country manager of ELANCE Philippines.

All these activities are part of the ZICTC’s Game Development Initiative program and its cause to promote and build the ICT/BPO industry in Zamboanga. Details can be found at the council’s facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/GameDevelopmentInitiativeForZamboanga or website at www.zamboangaict.org.

By Dante Corteza

2 Samuel 7:29 “Now be pleased to bless the house of your servant, that it may continue forever in your sight; for you, O Sovereign LORD, have spoken, and with your blessing the house of your servant will be blessed forever.”