3 Surprisingly Easy Ways to Hire Superstar Staff in the Philippines

I have to admit, I have been smiling from ear to ear as I was thinking about writing this article.

I’ve recently visited my staff – our own superstar virtual assistants in the Philippines and got so much love there!

The welcome literally got warmer as team size grew bigger (and the room got smaller!) as we hired 7 new virtual assistants for financial planning and mortgage broking during that week.

Virtual Assistants at VA Platinum

We’ve outgrown our 40-seat office space and have taken another 16-seat office, on the same floor.

It’s exciting and surprising, how fast we are growing. And as we’re all hyped up with the business going well, we realized there’s a lot more to do.

One special aspect of the business our team looked into is how to rev up our recruitment process.

To keep up with the current staff requirements from our existing and new clients, we have been experimenting to find the best way to hire superstar staff.

While we take pride in the quality of staff we have, we acknowledge the challenge to gather more similarly talented applicants since they don’t simply come a-knocking.

In this article, I reveal how we successfully hired 16 amazing virtual assistants for financial planning and mortgage broking within a month!

Challenge me in this, but I can tell you that in this line of business, 16 is a really really high number to reach, in just 4 weeks!

Fig. 1

meta-chart (4)

This chart represents the channels of recruitment we used to hire the 16 staff.

However what became very obvious was that from the 40.5% of our applicants that came from staff referrals, 75.0% of our successful hires came from this channel.  See below.

Fig. 2

meta-chart (5)

Understanding where the applicants are coming from, we looked for ways to boost these channels and focused on ways we can optimize our hiring.

So, here’s how we overcame our talent shortage crisis…

  1. Referral system

Referrals are of higher quality.  Referrals have already been screened by their peers prior to being invited into the company. The staff tend to be mindful of the people they recommend, as it directly reflects how sound their judgement is.

So before vouching for anyone, the staff consider their previous work relationships with their referrals. Through this, they can tell if their recommendations can fit well in the company in terms of skill and behaviour. Having this sense of familiarity is an advantage for the recruitment team as they conduct client profiling.

Providing referral incentives encourages staff to proactively find the right people within their networks. Referral incentives can be anything – from simple food vouchers, gift certificates or for most, cash!

Some of our direct competitors offer high cash rewards, reaching up to $130 per successful hire, to be paid to the staff upon contract signing or after the training period is over.

But do you know how much I spent in total for our 12 successful hires via referral?

(cue drumroll…)

$20!

Yes, you’ve read it right. We spent twenty bucks for all 12 of them. That’s literally about $1.66 each. And that’s just for coffee!

I honestly cannot believe it myself, until our recruitment report was shown to me. So, I asked around what motivated my staff to bring their friends in.

Though it does sound a little too good to be true, my staff told me that they are happy with the work environment and the employee compensation package. And these two factors make it easy for them to rave about the company to their circle of friends.

For some, pulling out referrals might be a matter of “what’s in it for me?” principle. But you can count on those certain few, whose intention go way beyond getting incentives.

It’s incredible how the referral system has worked. For example, one awesome team member, Ren, has referred at least 2 new staff before she even joined our business. And then as a result of both Ren and those 2 new staff, they referred another 6 staff.

Ren felt that her talented friends can do and earn better with us. She also feels that working with them is an added bonus because she’s surrounded herself with like-minded people she truly enjoys to be with.

Isn’t that touching?!

As a business owner, I’d like to take this as a positive sign. I must really be doing something right, seeing how the staff proactively contributes to the growth of the business.

So, here’s my recommendation:

Instead of maxing out your budget on referrals, find more ways to improve your office work environment and employee compensation package. People tend to look at long term benefits rather than a one-time bonus.

The happier the current staff are, the more attractive you seem to the eyes of prospective employees!

  1. Facebook

Everyone is on Facebook – well, maybe not everyone, but at least 36.2 million Filipinos are. And as the top-ranking social media networking site in the country, Facebook is one of the best avenues for a recruitment campaign. In fact, 29.75% of our applicants came from this recruitment channel.

There’s a number of things you can do to promote your hiring ads on Facebook. But it’s important to pay attention to the type of format you push out, especially to the amount of response you get from it.

For our part, we tried a lot of different formats and content. But guess what reeled in more responses….

Videos!

videos

As you can see in the comparison above, videos gathered way better response than images. Knowing this, we posted more videos than images and it helped raise our Facebook page engagement to 400%!

Funny how our random goofy video got the highest response rate overnight! And just right after the release of that particular video, we got 59 people messaging our page.

Facebook Boost

To maximize the promotional opportunity in Facebook, we tried their paid marketing service called Facebook Boost.

To use this properly you have to strategically set your target audience by age and location. You also have to identify your budget and the number of days you plan to run your ads.

Facebook Boost is very useful if your goal is to reel in more attention. While it does convert to a significant number of actual hires, you should not simply use it alone.

  1. MyNimo

MyNimo is Cebu’s go-to online job board. This is usually where a lot of people search for recent job postings and hiring announcements.  It’s almost like our seek.com and jobsearch.gov.au.

Posting just one job role on MyNimo costs about $128.20. For this amount, you can have your announcement run for 30 days.

This is the most expensive recruitment channel for us since you pay so much for just one job ad.

While it’s not so effective in terms of gaining attention, investing in MyNimo is truly helpful if you use it for jobs that require very specific skillset, like getting our first Australian SMSF Licensed Accountant.

There’s a lot of other creative ways to develop your recruitment strategy.

And these 3 ways I mentioned are just about the best ways if you want a low-cost but highly effective means of getting good talent.

 

Book a Zoom meeting with Brian!


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