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Trinidad and Tobago offers a high quality, cost competitive option for nearshore BPO operations. Given its southernmost location in the Caribbean Sea, the country has a high potential to emerge as an English voice-based destination, according to an assessment report conducted in 2012 by Avasant, a global sourcing advisory firm.
A unique value proposition to BPO operators includes:
- Ready access to an available labour pool
- Easy access to robust ICT infrastructure
- Nearshore location
Investment opportunities exist for BPO companies with a large English Voice Service focus, seeking to provide high quality customer interaction services to their clients from a nearshore location. Nearshore opportunities can be realized by companies seeking to provide contact centers or customer interaction services such as phone answering, telemarketing, customer retention, help desk etc.
Ready access to an available labour pool
According to a 2012 study done by Tholon’s, a leading full service Strategic Advisory firm for Global Outsourcing and Investments, a high literacy rate will act as a stable foundation on which to build more sophisticated skill sets needed in the BPO industry. Trinidad and Tobago has already capitalized on a 99% literacy rate which has served as a powerful foundation for the nation’s development. The education system has been well-developed from primary to university level as over 7,000 persons graduate from tertiary level institutions annually. The report further indicated that Trinidad and Tobago has 81 higher education institutions, which offers a prime opportunity for partnerships with BPOs to provide further and more specific training.
Results of a Teletech labour market survey in the region conducted for an international BPO/call centre operator in 2012 showed that Trinidad and Tobago can provide access to resources that are as skilled as their first world counterparts and at very competitive rates. The country scored higher in English Language skills when compared to Latin America and the Philippines in language testing based on a sample size of 78 out of 1,353 respondents. In addition, its workforce has a relatively neutral accent which is easy to understand.
Easy access to robust ICT infrastructure
Trinidad and Tobago has excellent infrastructure, especially compared to most Caribbean countries. This twin-island nation, with a combined land space of 5,128 square kilometres, has adequate bandwidth capacity, good quality real estate, local transportation, an extensive network of roads, good air connectivity and reliable power and utility systems. National strategic initiatives are focused on making Trinidad and Tobago a leader in ICT services in the region and providing e-Government services to local and international businesses and investors. The country’s location outside of the hurricane belt virtually eliminates business disruption risk. A continuous investment by the state in the nation’s technology networks has transformed the ICT infrastructure from a simple, digital-based one to an IP-based core network.
International information technology providers have invested in undersea cables, on-island fibre connectivity and MPLS networks. The 5 undersea fiber connections provide a robust and redundant core infrastructure.
Available ICT services include traditional broadband, WiMax mobile broadband, dedicated internet access, advanced and next generation IP networks and satellite backup services among other services. There are 2 mobile providers supporting an infrastrure of 2G, GSM and 4G networks, covering 98% of the country. Trinidad and Tobago’s mobile penetration of 139% is a further indication of the technical competence of its population.
Trinidad and Tobago’s capital city, Port of Spain (POS), is far closer in travel time to major US cities such as Miami, New York, Los Angeles and Toronto. Any of over 70 available flights leaving POS weekly will take as little as 3 to 11 hours to get to any of these major cities. This is in stark contrast to other BPO centres such as Manila (15 to 24 hours), New Delhi (14 to 20 hours) and Cape Town (19 to 27 hours). Given its location, providing executive oversight over business operations would only be a few hours flight time to a beautiful Caribbean island. The island’s location within the US time zone makes communication between head offices and satellite operations simple and effortless.
Over a century of success in the oil and gas industry has made energy costs in Trinidad and Tobago the lowest in the western hemisphere and the 8th lowest in the world.
In addition to the inherent cost advantages of operating in Trinidad and Tobago, BPOs can enjoy benefits of being located in a free zone which means that they will be exempt from customs duties, value added tax and corporate income tax for a 15 year period. Also, 100% foreign ownership of locally registered companies is allowed as well as full repatriation of profits. Incentives for training of staff will also be considered based on the specific needs of the operator.
Quality of Life
Trinidad and Tobago is a politically and economically stable country with a rich cultural fusion of different religions, races and cultures. The Trinidad and Tobago experience is one where you don’t have to choose between business and leisure; you can have more than what you think is possible.
For more information on investing in Trinidad and Tobago please contact InvesTT Trinidad and Tobago at:
Tel: +1 868 638 0038
Visit our website www.investt.co.tt