The Right Way of Hiring Filipino Workers (through a Recruitment Agency)


Date Posted: January 02, 2014

It is inevitable that the Philippines is one of the strongest (if not the strongest) overseas manpower generator for employers abroad. Filipino workers are sought-after by foreign employers because of exceptional qualities that other foreign qualified nationals do not possess. Due to this, expect that many Filipinos who find interest in working abroad will grab the opportunity, regardless if it will take some time to process papers and other necessary requirements.

But how do foreign employers hire Filipino workers?

In the Philippines, the system of recruiting a Filipino worker to work abroad usually comes in two forms: hiring through a recruitment agency and hiring through name-hire. The hiring process involves three to four "characters": the foreign employer, the Philippine Overseas Employment Authority (POEA), a POEA-licensed recruitment agency (not included in the name hire process) and the applicant.

To be able to hire a Filipino worker for an overseas job, the following steps must occur:

A foreign employer must find a Philippine recruitment agency that will seek a qualified candidate (applicant) for the job that he/she will offer. The agency that the employer must deal with should be accredited and licensed by POEA.

  1. The foreign employer will then submit all necessary requirements (documents that will prove the need to hire an overseas employee, existence of job/project, among others) to the nearest POLO office for verification purposes.
  2. Upon verification, the employer will submit requirements such as the Job Order/Manpower requirements to the agency where in turn the agency will submit such to the POEA for accreditation.
  3. The agency, will now post a job vacancy advertisement and wait for applicants to submit their resumes.
  4. The agency will collate resumes and curriculum vitaes of qualified applicants and then send it to the employer.
  5. The employer or the agency may conduct exams and interviews (either via personal or online interviews) to assess the applicants suitability for the job.
  6. When a qualified candidate is chosen, he/she is presented with the employment contract, and all other documentations will be prepared (passport, medical exam test and result, NBI/Police Clearance, Birth Certificate, etc.). Fees to be paid for this documents must be shouldered by the applicant. He/She is also required to attend a Pre-Departure Orientation Seminar (PDOS) since the purpose of traveling abroad is for employment. Placement fee may be collected from the applicant by the agency unless he/she is bound to work in countries that prohibits collecting placement fee from the applicant.
  7. The agency, on behalf of the applicant will then submit the documents to POEA together with the payment that covers the recruitment, documentation and placement of worker, such as the POEA processing fee, membership with the Overseas Worker Welfare Administration (OWWA), visa fee and PhilHealth-Medicare contribution (for one year coverage). All these fees are shouldered by the employer.
  8. The POEA will issue an E-receipt upon payment of the fees. The E-receipt serves as the applicant's POEA travel exit clearance. This attests that your recruitment was proper and your papers are valid. The E-receipt serves as your guarantee that you are covered by government protection and benefits. The E-receipt exempts you from travel tax and airport terminal fee. The applicant needs to present it at the POEA Labor Assistance Center (LAC) and the Bureau of Immigration (BI) counter at the airport before departure.


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