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5 Reasons to Launch a Call Center in Costa Rica

Here’s a look inside Costa Rica’s booming call center industries, and 5 reasons why businesses of all sizes choose to hire international workers.

Blog Author - Janelle Watson
Janelle Watson
Feb 13, 20243 minutes
Blog Author - Janelle Watson
Janelle Watson

Janelle Watson provides content marketing for the international team at Justworks. With a background in higher education and journalism, Janelle helps tell stories that make international expansion and EOR accessible.

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Right now, there are over 5 million residents of Costa Rica, and 16,000 residents work in call centers. The Costa Rican government champions bilingualism as well as offers incentives for foreign investors who are looking to expand to the Central American country, whose capital, San José, has been nicknamed the “Silicon Valley of Latin America.” 

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Why establish a call center in Costa Rica? 

More than 150 companies have built call centers in Costa Rica, including some top Fortune 500 companies, with the number growing each month.

Companies that have customer service for inbound and outbound calls, telemarketing, customer support experience, and back-office operations in Costa Rica include:

  • Amazon

  • HP

  • Dell

  • Intel

These companies, among others, have established call center services in Costa Rica to take advantage of the country's highly skilled and educated workforce, favorable business environment, and low employer costs. Many of these companies provide customer support services for clients in North America and other parts of the world, taking advantage of Costa Rica's geographic and time zone advantages.

Additionally, businesses with call centers in Costa Rica have reported high levels of employee satisfaction and low turnover rates, which have contributed to the overall success of the call center industry in Costa Rica.

What roles are companies hiring in Costa Rica?

Companies like Amazon have a wide range of positions available right now in Costa Rica for the following roles:

  • Implementation specialist 

  • Pricing specialists 

  • Sales associate 

  • Trilingual associates that speak Portuguese, Spanish, and English

  • Account managers

Other common call center jobs that are available in Costa Rica include:

  • Customer service representatives 

  • Call center agents

  • Management

The tech market in Costa Rica is blossoming, and many startups and larger companies especially in the US are setting up nearshore call centers and hiring workers. 

5 reasons why companies set up call centers in Costa Rica

1. Access to a highly skilled and educated workforce

Costa Rica has high literacy rates and a well-educated population. 

The government has implemented English language education at every level in the curriculum. For those who are already out of school but want to learn English, the government offers bonus English language courses at little to no cost. 

2. Geographical and time zone advantages:

Costa Rica is located in the Central Time Zone, which makes it an ideal location for companies that need to provide customer support during North American business hours. For companies based in Asian and European countries, having access to the Central Time Zone can give a wider range of availability to help support a growing customer base.

In order for companies that sell digital products to be competitive , they need to have as much time zone coverage as possible in order to answer customer support questions at any time throughout the day. For example, if a customer in California purchased a product and has an urgent request or question, a call center in London may not

3. Government incentives for foreign investors

The Costa Rican government offers a number of incentives to attract foreign investment, including tax breaks and exemptions, streamlined business processes, and a favorable legal and regulatory environment.

A bill was just recently approved that gives investors the following incentives:  

  • $150,000 in real estate investments in Costa Rica for temporary residence 

  • 20% tax exemption of total tax transfer, if the beneficiary is registered as an owner of real estate 

  • Tax exemption from import taxes on household goods 

  • Exemption from import, customs and value-added taxes (VAT) for up to two land, air, or sea transportation vehicles

  • Tax exemption for 20% of the total transfer tax, if the beneficiary is registered as the owner of the real estate acquired while the law is in effect

  • An exemption from import taxes for materials for professional or scientific practice if an individual can demonstrate to the Ministry of Finance that the materials are required to develop the individual's trade or business

There are a number of laws that make setting up businesses in Costa Rica easier than other global countries. 

4. Cost savings 

Right now, setting up a call center in Costa Rica is 40-60% of the price it would cost to establish a similar call center in the United States.

Costa Rica has a lower cost of living and lower labor costs compared to many other countries in North America, which makes it a great alternative for companies that want to reduce their operating expenses while still offering competitive compensation packages and maintaining high-quality customer support.

5. Gain a foothold in the US, Canadian, and Latin American markets 

Historically, Costa Rica has been a meeting point for trade between North and South America, thanks to its geographical proximity to the United States, Canada and other Latin American countries.

Costa Rica’s robust free trade regime has positioned it as a key player in international exports and imports, most notably medical supplies.

How Justworks Can Help 

Justworks’ global EOR is the solution for small businesses looking to easily hire talent in countries where they don’t already have a legal presence. 

Justworks has direct entities in 11 countries, with the ability to hire in 100+ additional countries upon request through our trusted local partners. You can fearlessly handle HR essentials like payroll, benefits, local compliance, and more. 

Learn more about our EOR services, and get started today!

This material has been prepared for informational purposes only, and is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, legal or tax advice. If you have any legal or tax questions regarding this content or related issues, then you should consult with your professional legal or tax advisor.
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Written By
Blog Author - Janelle Watson
Janelle Watson
Feb 13, 20243 minutes

Janelle Watson provides content marketing for the international team at Justworks. With a background in higher education and journalism, Janelle helps tell stories that make international expansion and EOR accessible.

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