Remote Revolution

Remote Revolution: Rates of BPO, Freelancers and VAs in the PH

16/12/ 2015   |   USource Team  |   Digital BPO

Business process outsourcing (BPO) now has the biggest workforce in the Philippines. Freelancing just added more to the income growth. Here we give you insider’s numbers on the rates. 

In our last article, we covered The Seven Facts and Forecasts of the BPO Industry and how it continues to grow by leaps and bounds in the country.

Alongside BPO, there’s the remote revolution worldwide and especially among Filipinos. It’s just as much a part of outsourcing as BPO is.

While bigger companies in the US, Europe and Asia have whole floors of employees working for them in the Philippines, small to medium businesses have one, two or a whole team of virtual staff working at home or in an office.

Virtual assistants in vast categories of skills now number in the millions in the country. Upwork alone lists 1.4million Filipino freelancers. That’s not counting thousands of others who prefer to exclusively maintain their freelancing account elsewhere. 2014’s Filipino freelancers’ income amounted to Php 4 billion (US $84-85 million), and that figure is expected to rise.

More and more Filipinos choose to work from home through freelancing platforms.

And no wonder.

It’s convenient and cheap. The daily commute in and around the major cities of Manila, Quezon City and Makati is horrendous. According to D&C (Germany’s Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, published on behalf of ENGAGEMENT GLOBAL, a publication on development issues), Manila’s traffic congestion annually costs the equivalent of P128 billion in lost productivity, illness, wasted fuel and vehicle maintenance.

We don’t need that. For us freelancers, our commute usually involves bed to breakfast to desk, and often, breakfast and all other meals are taken at the desk.

The rates are better. “If you get a freelance job five days a week the remuneration could be higher than most people with the regular job”, says Upwork Country Manager Ron Cirujano. And it’s true.

Plenty of freelancers earn more than those who have ‘steady’ jobs. For freelancers, contracts does come and go as projects end, but when you keep your client satisfaction high, more assignments and more invitations soon arrive from repeat clients and new ones.

It’s flexible. ONE freelancer could be a writer for a week, and dabble in web design the next week, if she’s got the skills for it.

It’s not fickleness. It’s flexibility. Freelancers specialize but do not box themselves into roles. They can explore and grow without hindrance, and earn more money as they make themselves more and more valuable in more and more fields.

The rates

The big question most entrepreneurs about to hire virtual assistants and freelancers: how much does it cost?

BPO companies provide allowances for transportation, clothes and food. For freelancers, it’s all inclusive, and if you hire via Upwork, rates quotes usually include Upwork’s 10% commission.


Freelancer rates:


  • Pinoy Freelancers Salary Guide by Freelancing PH – External Site