Nearshore Americas

Guatemala’s IT/BPO Sector Created Over 3,000 New Jobs in 2013

Information technology and BPO sectors generated more than 3,000 jobs in Guatemala in 2013, with the sector piling up more than $326 million in service export revenue, according to thw Central American country’s export promotion agency Agexport.

English call centers generated 740 jobs in the space of one year, while their Spanish counterparts added more than 1,500 employees to their workforce.

The new jobs take the total number of jobs created by the sector over the past few years to 35,000. The majority of outsourcing firms in Guatemala are based in its capital city but the government is working to entice outsourcers to smaller cities.

The agency stated that in 2013 three jobs fairs were organized to introduce graduates and job seekers to the outsourcing industry, which features several top global BPO firms such as Capgemini, Xerox and Telus International. According to Agexport, job fairs proved to be hugely successful as emphasized the sheer size of potential employees in the country and sparked a debate about the growing pace of offshoring sector.

The IT & BPO sector earned $326 million in service export revenue in 2013, an increase of 11% from the previous year. Low  labor costs and a growing number of U.S. expatriates are said to be the key drivers of growth in Guatemala’s offshoring sector. There are many Guatemalans in the United States but 25,000 of them return to their home country every year to seek re-employment or to launch a business.

According to the export promotion agency, the software development sector alone generated $79 million in service export revenue and created more than 8,500 jobs. Guatemala’s digital technology sector reached $27 million last year and the agency says this sector has employed about 4,500 people.

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The current challenge, the agency says, is bolstering human resources by training people in mathematics, English and computer science. Guatemala is likely to launch a training program for people willing to join the outsourcing sector. Agexport has long argued that the country has enormous human talent but this needs to be molded to the needs of the sector.

Narayan Ammachchi

News Editor for Nearshore Americas, Narayan Ammachchi is a career journalist with a decade of experience in politics and international business. He works out of his base in the Indian Silicon City of Bangalore.

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