Skip to main content

Filipino Job Seekers: Here are the Practical Tips on How to Get a (Good) Job in the Philippines – Part 1

Perhaps, the best way to begin this post is to ask you this:

Kumusta ang trabaho? (How’s work?)

I hope that you’re doing great on your current job. Whether you work on a store, meat shop, shopping mall, restaurant, on the street, on town markets, as a jeepney, bus, tricycle, or taxi driver, inside government offices, on factories, on large companies, whatever your job might be – may you always stay safe, happy, and fulfilled. In this post, I would share random photos of people on the job the purpose of which is to give you inspiration on your job hunting.


Cashier

I know, if it’s working here in the Philippines, safety, happiness, and fulfilment is not always the case. Like most of you, we have tons of complaints about our job; in fact, it the complaint on how to get a job in the first place. Hight taxes, heavy traffic on the way to work, low wages, etc. – always a headache. But I am here not to add insult to injury or inflict more damages to the sad reality of working here in our homeland. I am here to inspire you on your job or soon-to-be job.

So let me get straightforward on this. How to get a good job and stay longer and fulfilled on that job here in the Philippines? If you’re a Filipino job seeker, this post might have the right answers.

To tell you honestly, I’ve been rejected in so many job applications over the last ten years. There was year when I was like applying for two (2) jobs each month and none of my applications became successful after 12 months. Frustrations, that exactly it was. But allow me to share some tips based on those bad experiences. I come up with this list of reasons on why we find it difficult to be hired on the job we want to be in, then of course, the ways to deal with them.

Security Guard

Your Resume is not about you.
It’s not about long or short resume. It’s about the content of your resume. It can be as short as one page; two pages is enough. If the first interviewer spotted something on your resume that is contradicting with your statements, chances are, you’ll not make it to the second interview. So the key lesson here is: write your resume right. Avoid dishonesty please.

You answer the questions improperly.
If the hiring manager ask you this, “How do you see yourself in this company five years from now?”, how would you answer it? The question wants to test your willingness to help the company over the next five years. It is not just about doing your job right, being on time at work, or following your boss’ orders. No. What they want to hear from you, in most of their questions in fact, is that contribution you can offer for the company to prosper. Can you help increase its sales revenue, improve the customer service, or create an atmosphere of collaboration? Give it - your sensible answers.

Security Officer

Your aura during the interview is low.
I always dressed neatly but I realized that doesn’t count that much, or not at all matter in most cases. It is your face and the expressions coming from it that matters the most, including those words coming out of your mouth of course. Also, your body language, that is something you should keep in mind about. The key is to demonstrate interest, enthusiasm, and intelligence when talking with the hiring officer. Focus on the interview – be there. Do not be lousy or show any lack of confidence for that will cause you rejection.

You applied to the wrong job.
This is the trickiest thing in the job application process. I was fooled by this several times. The Philippine government and even private companies often says there is “job-skills” mismatch reason why positions cannot be filled. No brainer: Needless to state but if you’re an engineer, don’t apply for the nursing position. But let that statement be your ultimate guide whenever hunting for jobs. Evaluate your skills versus the job posted. Can you perform what are needed on that job 100%?

You yourself don’t want the job you’re applying for.

Admit it or not, you’re seeking for another job for some personal reasons. That could be due to personal issues with your co-workers or superiors. In most cases, it could be about that low salary you have or that delayed (or impossible to happen) promotion. No growth, no increase, very stagnant job. Sometimes, it’s the happiness missing on your current job. Whatever the case maybe, don’t apply for a job that is not within your forte or lingo just because you hate your present job. That job should be something you love to do and want to prosper on.

Lemon Stand Vendor

Okay. I got you. It is really difficult to find a job in the country these days. Millions are seeking for jobs and you’re one of them, especially if you’re a fresh graduate. And add to that the reality that you need money to go out and find a job. Allow me to get down into the very root of these realities in the life of a Filipino job seeker. Here are some eye-opening statements for you think seriously about.


The Cost of Looking for a Job in the Philippines
In the Philippines, my experience says, that to look for a job would cost you a minimum of 200 pesos a day, that is considering that you are to find that job only within your city or province. Still excluded is here is the cost of completing a long list of requirements before you start on the job. Roughly, that’s about half of the minimum wage in the country. Where that budget goes? That is 100 for food, 100 for transportation, and that’s it. If you have an extra 100, you can load your mobile phone to send text messages, browse the internet or make phone calls as needed. Or you can also go to the nearby computer shop to print a copy of your resume and browse jobs over the internet. That is more likely the typical scenerio for most Filipino job seekers these days.

Gasoline Boy

The question now is:


How to make the most of your 200 pesos?

Let me share with you some smart actions that could help you find that job on a very tight budget.

Nine out of ten businesses fail; so I came up with a foolproof plan – create ten businesses. - Robert Kiyosaki

Always remember that for this statement can guide you in a lot ways. Apply on ten job openings within a day, chances are high that you can be hired on one. Now here the more specific recommendations.

Use the internet.
To make the most out of your budget, use the technology and resources around you. Go apply for jobs online. Send resumes to different employers or recruitment agencies and within a week or two, they will start to email or call you for that interview. With your 50 pesos spent in just one sitting over the internet café, you can certainly get results.



Jobstreet Ad

The old saying “Hitting two birds with one stone” is still a good guide for job seekers. So when hunting for jobs in the city, in industrial zones, or on possible work abroad opportunities, apply to as many as you can. Use the internet. Search jobs on POEA website, job sites like Jobstreet.com or WorkAbroad.ph, and plenty of other job recruitment companies online. By doing this, you can save a lot by avoiding travel expenses as well as pricey food on restaurants.

Tap into the people you know you can help you.
There is nothing wrong with asking for help or assistance. Friends or relatives working in a company can help you pass the resume to the HR department. Simply state, they can assist you in sending the application to the right hands without any cost involve.

Alternatively, you may stay on the house of your relatives or friends nearest to the company you’re applying for. You can also seek guidance from your friends already working in the company you’re applying for. Consult them on how job application process works or ask tips about possible interview questions. There is nothing wrong with that.

Get a temporary job.
This is practically a good move. While applying for your dream job, which could take months, why not get a part-time job nearby. Maybe as a helper to a store or shop, a car washer, a farm helper – there are many options. The goal is to get extra money to support your job application, just like working part-time to support your studies. Simple as that. Earn 200 pesos and your one day budget for that job application is already covered. On what job to take, it should be a job that you can take an immediate leave of absence when the call for interview on that dream job comes in.



Taho Vendor
Taxi Driver

Don’t just quit yet on your current job.
Now, while you’re still on your current job, make the most of it. Don’t just quit but only when you’re already hired on the next job. It is best to keep that job application move to yourself or limited only to the people whom you trust. That will avoid issues within the company you’re currently employed, particularly with your boss.



Sales Staff

Finally, plan your job applications smartly.
It is not always going out and spend. Go there whenever the interview schedule is confirmed or when there is a legitimate job fair. Try to know how you can save on transportation by getting to know exactly where the company is located. If you can walk, do it. Be early as much as possible so you can be near the company premise at least 15 minutes ahead of the interview schedule. Never ever be late. Bring your own food – sandwiches, snack, water, and some candies to chew on while waiting. In the Philippines, it is always a lot of time waiting, expect that. Eat well, sleep well – that helps a lot.

Applying for a job is an important move you should be prepared about. There will be rejections, declines, and expenses without returns. There will be tons of requirements to complete for sure - medical, SSS, TIN, NBI clearance, etc. Feeling jobless can put you down and it is that stress that could kill you if you’re not ready to manage it. Be ready financially, emotionally, physically. That is how job application goes in the country.



Government Offices

This is just part 1 of this post. On part 2 and part 3, I will share more specific tips on how to get hired in the Philippine job economy including the requirements needed to get a job, the process of working abroad, and the strategies on how to stay good at work.

Hope this post helps you.



Related Posts

Filipino Job Seekers: Here are the Practical Tips on How to Get a (Good) Job in the Philippines – Part 2

Filipino Job Seekers: Here are the Practical Tips on How to Get a (Good) Job in the Philippines – Part 3


About this Post
Finding a job, in the Philippines, is a like finding a needle in the haystack. It is not easy. It takes time, energy and money. The author, Noriel Panganiban, founder of Knowriel.com, wants to share you tips on how to get that dream job and how to stay happy on it. There is a system that Filipino job seekers need to understand and this post is what will explain them about. 

Most-Read Posts of the Month

“I Love Baguio City” - My Travel Story in the Summer Capital of the Philippines

The Strawberry Farm, Burnham Park, Mines View Park, the Mansion, Wright Park, Lourdes Grotto, and Session Road; these are among of the popular landmarks in the more commonly known “Summer Capital of the Philippines” – Baguio City. Why so? Well, the temperature here seldom exceeds 26 degree centigrade. During the cold season of December to February, the temperature falls down to even below 10 degree centigrade. The record low temperature was 6.3 degree and that was on January 18, 1961.

How to Travel to Baguio City?
Going to this cold city in the mountainous province of Benguet, Philippines is a six to seven hours travel by passenger utility bus from Manila. Starting from EDSA, traversing the NLEX, entering SCTEX, exiting the province of Tarlac and going through the neighbouring provinces of Pangasinan and La Union, and then exploring the zigzag road of either the Marcos Highway, the Kennon Road or the Naguilian Road, the coldest place in the Philippines will be reached. Baguio is about 2…

"Business as Usual" as the Filipinos Define It (Vulcanizing Shop, Sari-Sari Store, Bakery) – Part 1

I asked the shop owner about these old unused tires on what are they doing with it. The Vulcanizing shop owners says, “Oh, someone will pick up those tires and pay us 5 or 10 pesos each. Sometimes they just take it for free”.


Vulcanizing Shop - A Classic Example of Filipino Business
You’ve most probably seen and been into a local, typical vulcanizing shop like this one in the photo. The business concept is very simple. Here’s a customer with his flat or deflated tire and the vulcanizing boy will repair it using a rubber compound patch, a heating tool, and an air pump. If it’s a regular car or van tire, repairing one may only take 10 minutes the cost of which is around 30 to 60 pesos. If it’s a tire from a truck or bus, it could be around 30 minutes and the repair would cost the vehicle owner around 100 to 150 pesos.

Here’s the thing. A shop like this one could potentially earn a revenue of 1000 up to 2000 per day just by repairing a flat tire. Why? Well, with thousands of vehicles like j…

Who are These OFWs (Overseas Filipino Workers) and Why are They the Modern Heroes of the Philippines

At the turn of the millennium, the Philippine government launches this campaign program calling the overseas Filipino workers or OFWs as “Mga Bagong Bayani ng Bayan” (Modern Heroes of the Nation). From then onwards, different organizations established programs giving awards and recognitions to selected OFWs who did a remarkable contribution or action to their family, friends, work or in general, to the country.


OFW ka ba?Bakit?Eh kasi dating mo pa lang, mayaman ka na. Boom! 
(Are you an OFW? Why? Because with just the way look, it seems that you’re rich. Boom!)

My Cousin Dado as an OFW in South Korea 

At present, OFWs around the world are estimated to be around 12 – 14 million. This is approximately 10 – 12 percent of the Philippines total population. These OFWs are distributed on many countries all over the globe majority of whom are in Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Japan, Singapore, Hongkong, Taiwan, South Korea, and Italy. Immigrant workers in the United States, Australia and Eu…

I know a man - Manny Pacquiao; He’s a Filipino

Way back 2006, I would not forget that day, Pacquiao knocked down Erik Morales twice and defeated the latter via TKO in the tenth round of that heated boxing match. I am with my friends in our rented apartment, which is near the company I used to work, watching the brawl in both excitement and suspense. That was yet another history made, taking his revenge to a Mexican boxer who once stole the glory from a Filipino champion. Like any other Filipino, I shouted, cheered, and celebrated that very moment of winning. The afternoon news is all about that big story of Manny Pacquiao - hailed as the People’s Champ. That was the year I started to get more fascinated about Pacquiao.



“All those who are around me are the bridge to my success, so they are all important.” – Manny Pacquiao


The Pambansang Kamao
Manny Pacquiao is dubbed as the “Pambansang Kamao” (National Fist). I am not going to tell his story as a boxer as that story has been there online for quite some time. What I want to share in th…

The Colorful Stained-Glass Windows and the Beauty We Must See in All Religions

If you are a Catholic, you might have been noticing those stained-glass windows from inside and outside the church. Typically, stained-glasses are the different colors of glasses in that window, ceiling, doors, and altar. What an art, right? Well, if you look closer, there are images of Jesus Christ’s life and sometimes that story of how the church or cathedral was built in the locality. And, aren’t they beautiful?


The intention of this post is not to promote Catholicism or speak against other religions. I believe every religion has a beauty in it, specifically, with the building structures be it a temple, synagogue, mosque, kingdom hall, worship place, house of worship, or whatever the religious organization calls it. And when it comes to beauty, nothing compares to the beauty of the fact that people believes in the existence of God.

Although I don’t have images of other religion’s worship places to share, what I really want to share in this post is the fact that there is something b…

“Fixer” in Philippine Government Agencies Like the Social Security System (SSS) and Land Transportation Office (LTO) – What We Filipinos Can Do About it?

Maybe in this post, I can clearly explain how “fixing” works in many government offices in the country. The idea is first, to warn you that such illegal fixing happens, and second, to give you tips on how you should avoid them. Plain and simple, we will not in anyway damage or speak against anyone or any particular office of the government in this post. It just happened that this is about my experience with LTO and SSS Tagaytay. I want to emphasize that still many government employees in the Philippines are doing their jobs right - including those who are working in the said branches.
If you have experienced transacting with any government offices here in the Philippines, whether you're a Filipino or not, you should already be familiar with these signages.



Here’s a bit of knowledge for you to digest first.
What is “fixing” or who is a “fixer” by the way?
In the Philippines, these good words happened to have a negative connotation over the past decades. Good words? Yes, indeed. When …

The Divisoria Malls - Defining Shopping in the Philippines

They call it the 168 Mall. It is one of the busiest places in the Philippines during shopping days like Christmas season when longing for enjoyment and relaxation is on the air once again. From Cavite, my home place, going to Divisoria, it will take you about an hour travel under normal traffic flow.

What is in this place? Well, Divisoria is the Bargain Shopping Capital of the Philippines. This is where wholesale and retail prices make shoppers say “WOW!” on delight. Visiting this place will definitely give you a realization about shopping on a different dimension. Find out why on the next paragraphs.

On the Photo: The Popular 168 Mall in Divisoria, Manila, Philippines


Divisoria is located in Binondo, Manila. It is accessible via Quiapo(where the famous Black Nazarene of Quiapo Church is) thru Recto Avenue and via Lawton near Manila City Hall. Divisoria has been there since the early 90’s. As it is near the North Harbour, Manila’s main seaport, the freshest and cheapest products usuall…

“Pasalubong” – What Makes this Filipino Word Very Special?

Probably next to the beauty of a tourism spot, if it’s about the real reasons for traveling there, is our search for the best “pasalubong”. It’s the tagalog word for “gift” or “souvenir” and it can be anything from foods, toys, clothes, handicraft, furniture, soaps, wearables, or household items. It’s practically anything, big or small, cheap or expensive, edible or not. And for as long as that special item was bought somewhere else and then given to someone as an act of love and kindness – the true purpose has been served.


A simple gesture of “Salamat po” (Thank you) for sharing that pasalubong is enough to make you feel the love and kindness back. There is the best pasalubong for kids, for grandmas and grandpas, for a favorite grandson, for a close neighbor or friend, for the workmates, for the boss, for a former enemy, for a religious brother, and even for a complete stranger. Yes, indeed!

Well, “pasalubong” is actually different from a gift for birthday, wedding, or special gatherin…

My Red Owner-Type Jeep Driving Adventures in Cavite, Philippines

About a year ago, I was really fortunate for having this second-hand owner-type jeep. Since then, I was given the chance to drive on nearby places here in Cavite I always wish I had been into before. I am also happy to say that my low-cost camera now has a good companion in blogging, a low-cost red jeep. I could say that telling good stories is now a bit better for I can capture the right views at the right angle, at the right point (not when I used to commute and take photos from the passenger’s window, just like when I travel to Baguio City years back). Now, I can pull over and take the best shots I can, though not at all times.


My Red Owner-Type Jeep 
And so I have this great experiences in exploring the inner side (places not often talked about) of the province of Cavite where I had been living for almost a decade. Places like Pala-Pala, Trece Martires, Aguinaldo Shrine, Indang and Tagaytay are now within reach, of course with some money for the gasoline and eating. The previous blo…