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DICT: Work from home scheme should be adopted by BPO firms

/ 02:57 PM March 30, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) on Monday said Monday that work-from-home arrangements, “as far as practicable,” should be adopted by ICT-enabled Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) companies while the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) is in effect in Luzon.

In a statement, the DICT said this operational guideline is included in a department circular it has issued for ICT-BPO companies.

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“The ICT-BPO sector shall also transfer the necessary equipment to facilitate WFH arrangements within the periods set by the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Disease (IATF-MEID),” said DICT.

ICT-BPO companies are also allowed to continue operations through a skeleton staff.

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“Employees are permitted mobility to and from their place of work within areas affected by the quarantine, provided that appropriate temporary accommodation and/or shuttle service arrangements, within the immediate vicinity of the workplace, shall be provided,” the department added.

According to DICT, guidelines and restrictions for the skeleton staff should be observed, such as proper hygiene and the provision of companies of a clean and safe working environment to prevent infection from the coronavirus disease, which triggered the imposition of the ECQ.

The agency said these guidelines include the monitoring of personnel exhibiting symptoms of the disease.

“The DICT guidelines are intended to complement the policy directives of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) for the Export and BPO sectors contained in DTI Memorandum Circulars Nos. 20-06 and 20-08, which the ICT-BPO sector is similarly expected to heed,” said the department.

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