Nearshore services involving product development, R and D and project support are definitely on the rise. While there remain concerns that the Nearshore region – especially Central America – risks being limited to call center and customer support services, we continue to see important signs of growth in value-added business support operations which – in our view – must define the next phase of expansion for the Nearshore community.
Mario Espana is the managing director of CADIS, a Guatemala City-based operation providing graphic design for sales materials, CAD design for architectural projects, web design and other services. Espana views human capital as one of the primary attractions of the Guatemala services sector. In an interview with the Examiner (an online news journal), Espana points to the emergence of a qualified and eager workforce as a key reason why CADIS located here.
He points out:
- Guatemala has the largest population in Central America, of which more than 50% of the people are under the age of 25.
- There is a strong trajectory of outsourcing companies in different industries: from apparel to call centers to back office services.
- Guatemala also has the largest college student population in the region, and both government and private sector are investing in new industry oriented training facilities and programs.
- A new $10 million IT training facility has recently opened, which was established to house call center and BPO incubators, CAD and web design labs, and – in partnership with Studio C – a state of the art 3D animation studio.