Jobs in the Philippines

Saw a recent advertisement in a Filipino newspaper about a Job Fair being offered recently for those seeking jobs in the Philippines, Filipino jobs or those living in the Philippines seeking jobs overseas.  Here's what some of the recruiters were looking for: financial executives, area sales managers, operations managers, accounting generalists, HR supervisors, system engineers, performance maximization managers, management trainees, front desk specialists, nurses, quality assurance specialists, telemarketers and sales representatives, admin assistants, architects, industrial engineers, mechanical engineers, electrical engineers, civil engineers, network administrators, IT technicians, programmers, data encoders, customer service representatives, credit and collection, billing assistant, courier, operations agent, recruitment analysts, receptionists, accountant, store managers, librarians, agent sales coordinators, and call center agents.Seeking job

Some of the big guns looking for employees were IBM, Citibank, Smart, AEGIS, Teleperformance, and Intelnet Impact, among others.  Sounds similar to what one would find advertised for job fairs in the States. Quite a long list of jobs that employers are seeking to fill, but just what is the state of unemployment in the Philippines? One online source, the NSO, National Statistics Office of the Philippines,  reports it was only 7.10 % in October 2010 down from recent years where . I am certainly no statistical authority, but I doubt those figures are even close to being accurate.  So I dug a little deeper in my research, and found an article in the December 16, 2010 edition of the that put it all in perspective for me.

The PhilSTAR reports that one in four adults in the Philippines are jobless or are looking for more work according to data released  by the National Statistics (that's  more like 25% unemployment in my books.) The rate of underemployment – representing people working less than 40 hours a week and looking for fuller employment – jumped to 19.6 percent in October 2010, compared with 19.4 percent a year earlier and 17.9 percent in July. The official figures also understate the employment problems in the Philippines, where a third of the population lives in poverty.

Although 61.2 million of the Philippines’ 95 million people are aged 15 and over, the statistics agency said just 39.3 million could be considered part of the labor force, with many others not even looking for work. However,  officials of the Department of Labor and Employment, say that the NSO data on employment showed an improving job situation.  “Based on the October 2010 Labor Force Survey, there has been a decline in the number of people belonging to the so-called vulnerable employment or the informal workers,” DOLE’s Communication Office director Nicon Fameronag said.

The NSO labor force survey, done in October, showed that a majority or 63.8 percent of the total 36.5 million employable Filipinos were in full-time employment while 35 percent were on part-time employment. There were more unemployed males (63.3 percent) than females (36.7 percent). Almost half (49.3 percent) of the unemployed were in age group 15-24 years.  33.3 percent of the unemployed were high school graduates, more than one-fifth or 22.9 percent were college undergraduates, while 19.4 percent were college graduates.

So are there many Philippines jobs out there? Well, if there are, it sure looks they are still a huge amount of unemployed people.  And don't forget that age discrimination is openly practiced in the Philippines.  My 39-year-old brother-in-law, Joery, that lives at "The Compound" is too old for most jobs advertised in the Philippines. And that's too bad because he's a good worker.  But a lot of people just shrug their shoulders and say, "Well, that's how it is in the Philippines." That's a shame.

Author: The Kano

POST AUTHOR: "THE KANO." Dave DeWall, "The Kano", is the Publisher & Editor-in-Chief of "Philippines Plus" in publication since August 2009. He is also the CEO of Lizard Poop Productions and author of the best-selling guide book "The Philippines Expat Advisor." Dave moved to the Philippines in July 2009 from Central Illinois with his lovely wife of over 19 years, "The Sainted Patient Wife." The couple reside in a rural province in Western Visayas, Guimaras. The small island province is said to have the sweetest mangoes in the world. They do not have any children but are the proud owners of eight active canines, including a Belgian Shepherd called "Killer" "Killer" has bitten five people in the last two years along with one goat and a carabao. "Killer" doesn't like strangers. Or goats. Or carabaos.

7 thoughts on “Jobs in the Philippines

  1. Gee Dave,

    That sounds a lot like Michigan. The trouble I see here is that the folks that do have jobs don’t get enough money to put rice and fish on the table everyday. I have seen job fairs like in your photo. They last all day long! If you have to have a college degree to work at McDonalds part-time then something is wrong with the system. We did hire a lot of part timers back in Michigan. It does help the bottom line but I would just get so mad when I would lose a good worker when he found a full time job or moved out of Michigan looking for work. People should not have to leave their country to find good paying jobs as they do here in the Philippines. It took a long time for the Philippines to get in this shape and it will just as long to fix the problem….if everyone starts today. I don’t see that happening anytime soon.

    BTW: If they fixed everything could I still afford to live here. Hmmmm.


    1. You’re right about those folks here that have jobs and can’t even buy enough food to eat, Gary. I mean when the wage for our SM workers in Iloilo is only P265 a DAY, that’s not much to live on. That’s only about six US Dollars!

      And you’re absolutely right. People should not have to leave the Philippines to get a job elsewhere. I asked my Filipina wife yesterday why the Philippine government is not getting the OFWs out of Egypt with all the turmoil and riots going on? “They want them to stay so they can keep sending money back home.” She’s right.

  2. HI Dave, I know when you fill out the paper work for a job in the Philippines, they want you to have two photos of yourself, so that they can put it on your folder.If you don’t look good enough for the job forget it.They do want to know if you are married, have a boyfriend, and have any kids. This would not fly in the states.When you go to, lets say SM Mall, all of the grils that work there do look like they are the same hight, weight, and of corse very pretty, and cute.They have very good manners and always say goodmorning sir, goodmorning mama.And i’am not realy complaning, because they do treat you very good, not like the states.JC

    1. You’re right about the job requirements, JC. I’ve talked to a lot of sales girls at our SM Mall in Iloilo, and they tell me there absolutely are height, weight, and “beauty requirement” which includes only light-skinned personnel. You’re right about that not flying in the States, any company that practiced that would be slapped with a class action lawsuit. It’s true that the SM ladies are very polite, and quite attractive. I really never mind when they say “Good morning, Sir” to me and smile even when it’s the middle of the afternoon. For some reason I have found that the time of the day doesn’t have a lot of bearing on the greeting. I get “Good Morning, Sir” any time of day. Thanks for your input, JC.

      1. See…wearing that watch of your’s just makes you more conscious of the time of day. So them sales girls at SM are just a few hours off – I’m sure they don’t mind. 😆

  3. Dave, I’m just curious about the reliability of the “under-employed” statistics. How does one classify a trike driver who hangs out with his trike for 12-14 hours a day, but spends most of his time sitting still? I can’t see how this could be construed as being employed IMO. I believe you’re right with the inaccuracies of the numbers. I just don’t see how any employment numbers in the RP could be even close to accurate.

    1. I have no doubt that the under-employed figures are not accurate, Randy. Just my casual observations in the past three years living in the Philippines attests to that. I’m sure some “adjustments” are done to make the official statistics look a lot better than they actually are.

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