High Quality, Lower Costs: Outsourcing Destinations in East and Southeast Asia

Asia has always been the destination for more affordable goods and travel but, in the past decades, the number of companies outsourcing certain tasks and responsibilities to countries in the East has increased. The region is home to 4.6 billion people or 65 percent of the entire human population around the world.

There is so much untapped potential in Asia. So much talent is undiscovered. Most of all, because of the currency exchange and the generally low cost of living, you pay less than you would if you hired in the United States or Europe.

You would not get a lower quality of output, either. The workforce in Asia is very well-educated, often outperforming their counterparts in the West. They receive adequate training, too, to ensure that they can do a good job,

Even the biggest companies in the world outsource in Asia. IBM, HP, Microsoft, and Facebook all outsource labor in various cities across the region.

Hong Kong

Hong Kong has one of the best education systems in the world. Yearly, it produces globally competitive young professionals who are sought after by employers all over the world. In fact, two of its universities, the University of Hong Kong and Hong Kong University of Science and Technology made it to the Top 30 of the World’s Top 100 Universities alongside Oxford University and Harvard University.

The high cost of living in Hong Kong is pushing the average monthly salary up which is why you would not see it in most global outsourcing indexes. Compared to cities in Southeast Asia, services will be more expensive. However, in exchange, you can be assured that the output will have high quality. Moreover, English is one of the primary languages spoken by residents which will make communication between two organizations or individuals far easier.

Hong Kong is a technology hub where all kinds of hardware and software are being developed. You will be able to find information technology, digital marketing, and web content, and web design and development companies in Hong Kong.


Taiwan is another Asian territory that is ideal for outsourcing. Unlike Hong Kong, the cost of living in Taiwan is lower and, therefore, the compensation that companies will spend for workers will be lower, too. However, like Hong Kong, Taiwan has a highly skilled workforce.

The people of Taiwan are not as proficient in English. In 2018, it dropped to number 48th out of 88 countries in the global English proficiency index, well behind Singapore, the Philippines, Malaysia, India, and Hong Kong. However, expect things to improve soon. The government plans to make the population bilingual by 2030.


working in the office

Vietnam is a new hotspot for outsourcing, and its rising position in the industry is only strengthened by the resilience it has shown in the past year. The pandemic did not slow the country down. After locking down a couple of times, life immediately went back to normal. The government and its people had the COVID-19 situation under control when the U.S. and the UK. recorded tragedies after tragedies.

Vietnam has a very young population and most are highly educated. In fact, in a 2015 report by the World Economic Forum, the Southeast Asian territory has one of the most engineering graduates globally.

Moreover, workplace loyalty among employees in Vietnam is high. The attrition rate in the country is within 10 percent which is impressive considering that it is 22 percent in the U.S. and 15 percent in the UK.

While language is a barrier, the government wants to improve the English proficiency of the next generation of workers by classifying it as a second language rather than a foreign language.

The Philippines

The Philippines is one of the most popular destinations for companies that seek to outsource. The minimum wage in its capital, Manila City, is Php537 per hour or about US$11. It goes lower as you move deeper into the provinces.

The greatest strength of the Philippines as a provider of outsourcing services is the population’s proficiency in English. The Southeast Asian country ranked 27th out of 100 regions in the global English Proficiency Index and second in Asia, right after Singapore.

The workforce in the Philippines has shown strength in call centers and other BPO as well as IT offerings.

Other countries in East and Southeast Asia such as Japan, South Korea, Singapore, and Malaysia are all great destinations for outsourcing. It all depends on the company’s budgets and needs.

Outsourcing in Asia is a huge industry, and it is filled with highly skilled workers all ready to apply their expertise on tasks handed to them.

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