Published: August 30, 2018 | Updated: September 23, 2020 | Posted by: Venus Zoleta | Government Services
Despite laws protecting the rights of Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs), many of them still fall prey to illegal recruiters and end up exhausting their savings without landing an overseas job.
Trying to find work abroad? Are you sure you’re dealing with a legitimate recruitment agency? Apply only through a recruiter licensed by the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA).
Here are four ways to find legitimate OFW agencies and recruiters that can help you secure a job abroad.
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The POEA is the government agency in charge of licensing agencies that recruit and deploy Filipinos for working abroad. It has a verification system that allows prospective OFWs to check a recruitment agency’s current status—whether it has a valid license or is marked as one of the following: delisted, canceled, forever banned, or ceased operations. The system also provides the websites and contact information of licensed recruiters.
Aside from the POEA website, you can find legitimate overseas work opportunities at online job portals. These websites feature job listings of POEA-licensed recruiters. Here are some of them:
Your trusted OFW family and friends are the best people to ask for recommendations on recruiters. But if none of your loved ones have experienced working abroad, you can find reviews about recruitment agencies on the internet.
A good place to search for relevant information about OFW recruiters is RecruitmentAdvisor. It’s a global recruitment and employment review platform developed by the International Labour Organization, Migrant Forum in Asia, and other partner organizations.
RecruitmentAdvisor allows OFWs to comment on their personal experiences with recruiters and rate them based on recruitment fees, pre-departure orientation, employment contract, and other criteria. Their reviews are helpful to other Filipinos who are looking for work abroad.
It’s hard to trust everything you see on social media nowadays, what with the rise of fake news and online investment scams. Facebook groups that post fake overseas job ads are no exception.
Just recently, the POEA issued a public warning against job scammers on Facebook. The government agency has received reports about Facebook groups that post fake ads for various positions in developed countries such as the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, and Japan.
The POEA warns prospective OFWs to avoid transacting with anyone that requires payments for documents and seminars. This is a telltale sign of an overseas job scam.
Also, recruiters must not collect fees from OFW applicants for expenses such as visa, work permit, POEA processing, and airfare, according to POEA rules and regulations. Foreign employers are supposed to pay for these costs. Know what OFW fees you’re required to pay for working abroad and which ones aren’t.
It takes a lot of research and caution to avoid illegal recruiters and protect yourself while looking for your first overseas job. This ensures you’re dealing only with a POEA-accredited agency.
Venus is the Head of Content at Moneymax, with 15+ years of experience in digital marketing, corporate communications, PR, and journalism. She invests in stocks, mutual funds, VUL, and Pag-IBIG MP2. Outside of work, she’s crazy about cats and Korean dramas. Follow Venus on LinkedIn.