DAVAO CITY — Western Wats Philippines is opening a call center at the New City Commercial Corp. (NCCC) Mall here, the Philippine head of the US-based firm said.
Western Wats, which also operates in Cebu City, has spent about P60 million to P70 million for its Davao operations, company officials said.
“This does not include our other operational expenses as we are bringing in equipment from the US,” Western Wats Philippines President Jose Antonio T. San Gabriel said during a press conference.
Derek Rice, Western Wats operations director, said the company will hire 500 employees this year, and the number will double next year.
These employees will go into market research since the company is into data gathering and analysis for clients, Mr. Rice said.
The Davao operations will start in July and employees will have their hands full by then considering that the American election is heating up. The call center will gather data for US presidential candidates, he said.
In May, the company will start recruitment and will hold jobs fairs and other similar events to fill the seats required.
With the entry of the US-based call center company, Ivan Spencer A. Lim, manager of NCCC malls, said extending mall hours is being studied.
Mr. San Gabriel said his company does not want to “overpay” its employees so as not to disrupt the operations of other call center companies in the city.
Andre Joseph T. Fournier of the Davao City Chamber of Commerce and Industry said that based on a government survey, call centers in the city pay between P7,000 to P11,000 a month for entry-level positions, and the salary can rise to P13,000 a month.
Mr. Fournier earlier urged local call centers to increase the pay of their workers even if the level is still below the rates in Metro Manila.
The entry of more call centers Western Wats being the fifth among the big contact center firms to operate in the city — will give opportunities to many local residents who are proficient in English, he added.