Philippines’ Top HR Blog

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What to do before bootstrapping a business

Running a business is difficult and costly, especially if you plan on bootstrapping. Here are some ways you can prepare for the leap.

Save at least 6 months of your living expenses

As exciting as the thought of jumping right in is, it may take a while before your bootstrapped business can start to pay you a living wage. Unless you have some funds stashed away or someone who is willing to support you as you grow a business, you’ll want to have enough in the bank to support yourself for at least 6 months. Some of that money may need to go into supporting the business as well.

Build your network of peers and mentors

Mentors are invaluable when bootstrapping a business, because you can tap them for advice on how to avoid costly mistakes. You’ll gain valuable insight on your own business from a more experienced professional’s perspective, and with a vast network of peers you’ll be able to get some outside help on board when the business is ready for it.

Have the right founder mix

Sometimes single-founder startups make it big, but usually it’s better when the founding team has a good mix of necessary skills. For example, if you’re building a software-as-a-service business, you’ll want a technical founder (who understands development and how to build the software), and a marketing and operations founder. Getting a healthy mix of skills and specialties ensures your business is well-balanced, even before you start hiring.

Take the leap and start bootstrapping

Finally, once you’ve prepared, the most important thing is to take the leap. Don’t focus so much on trying to get everything set up perfectly that you forget to start your business.

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Sample Benefits Packages for Startups

It’s important for every business to attract good talent, but it’s especially vital for startups. The people they hire initially will help to shape the direction, foundation, and culture of the entire company. In order to attract and retain top talent, you’ll need to provide the right incentive. You can use these sample benefits packages for startups to guide how you want to structure your team’s benefits.

The basics

  • A living wage, if you cannot afford a high salary
  • HR staff to handle their benefits and ensure timely delivery of pay
  • Medical insurance with vision and dental
  • Paid time off (more on this later)

Something extra

  • Healthy snacks and food
  • A savings plan
  • Home set-up (laptops, Internet connection, ergonomic hardware)
  • Gym membership
  • Company outings or trips
  • Transportation benefits (parking space, public transportation pass)
  • On-site daycare for pets and children
  • Professional development opportunities
  • Discounts with local businesses

There are many company benefits you can offer your startup employees that don’t include a raise in salary. According to a thread in Quora, startups are getting creative with mixing and matching their benefits.

Sample 1 – Wishpond

  • Free food
  • Panda onesies
  • $1000 annual learning budget
  • Monthly group activities
  • Stock options
  • Beer Fridays
  • Games

Sample 2 – The Content Factory (remote)

  • Work from home
  • Internet
  • Cable
  • Cell phones
  • Company trips

Sample 3 – Ribbon

  • Flexible hours
  • Equity + competitive salary
  • Ping pong and foosball
  • Health, dental, and vision
  • Gym membership

Sample 4 – 72, Leocraft

  • Open vacation policy
  • Learning and growth support
  • Flexible hours
  • Breakfast
  • Insurance
  • Pet-friendly workspace
  • Onsite massages
  • Recreational facitlities

Do any of these benefits match what your startup can offer? Let us know in the comments below!

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Change Management: How to thrive in uncertainty

Organizations are constantly evolving to stay relevant in the modern world. Sometimes, pivots are necessary, and the entire company’s structure, vision, and mission changes. Change management discusses how to thrive in uncertainty, how to handle changes in an organization, and how to succeed with an evolving professional life.

Organizations need to change due to economic conditions, shifts in strategy, for the purpose of growth, due to technological advances, and many more valid reasons. Change is not the enemy, but usually the savior of a company. When a company shifts focus to survive, change is not only necessary, it’s beneficial. Many common household names are nothing like what they were 10 years ago. For example, The Washington Post reports that YouTube began as a dating site, Groupon was a fundraising site for social causes, and Nintendo manufactured playing cards.

Below are a few principles of change management, to help leaders ensure that the organization’s goals are still at the center of change, and the company’s employees remain successful in the face of challenges.

Start with the top-level of leadership and work your way down. This way, managers understand the shift and can introduce the change to their respective teams. There is more order, and your regular employees will have more knowledgeable resources to turn to if they have any questions, since all the management levels will be caught up.

Explain why things are changing. Back up your claims with data, history, and case studies. Your team should understand why the shift is happening, and it should make sense to them in order to get everyone fully on-board. If you have compelling data in your annual revenues, share them. If your competitors are all making the shift because the market is crashing, share the numbers.

Keep employees accountable. Let them know what their responsibilities are in the face of change, and what they are expected to handle. This provides some clarity and direction in the face of shifting landscapes.

Keep lines of communication open. Your team needs to understand that they can come to management with questions and for any issues they’re facing. It’s in the best interest of the entire company to keep everything running smoothly during the time of change, and open lines of communication will help highlight any problems.

To learn more about change management, keep an eye on our public seminars page, where we announce learning and development opportunities open to the public. We often have one on Change Management, which is one of our most popular.

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Crossing Borders for Team Synergy: Cultural Diversity

This special two day course on Cultural Diversity from October 26 to 27 is great for HR professionals, consultants, and anyone who is part of a diverse workforce. Learn to understand what culture is and how it came to be. This program is also intended to have a better appreciation of the different cultures and to us it as leverage for synergy.

Register Now

Course Outline

  • Understanding Culture
  • Growth of Culture
  • Culture in the workplace
  • Cultural diversity and its impact
  • Do’s and Don’ts
  • How do you create Synergy even with cultural diversity

For an investment of P12,500 plus tax, you’ll get instruction by an expert facilitator, a specialized student manual, snacks and lunch, and a personalized certificate of participation. The course will be held with small group workshops that provide “active learning,” which is known to be the most effective method for adult learners.

Register Now

About the Facilitator

Ruby Mañalac is a seasoned Sales, Marketing and HR OD practitioner. She is a graduate of Bachelor in Arts , Majoring in Communication Arts at the University of Sto. Tomas. Holding several positions in Sales and Marketing, she has worked her way up the ranks to becoming Marketing Director for Profiles Asia Pacific.

While holding this position, she prepared a business plan, her brain child, People Dynamics, Inc. an affiliate of Profiles Asia Pacific, to showcase the power of assessments in the different facets of HR OD activities such as recruitment, executive search and more notably, training.Developing a passion for HR OD, she went on to finish a PMAP course, Certificate in Human Resource Planning and Acquisition.She also engaged herself in several training programs here and abroad to hone her skills both as a trainor and developer of modules. She believes that learning and development is a never ending process.She has earned several global awards and recognition in the realm of Sales, Recruitment and Training in particular in the USA.

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Social media checkup: Are you keeping an eye out for top talent online?

If you’re looking for talent, especially for the marketing department, you should be looking on social media. Professionals who have well-curated, interesting social media accounts show that they know what good content is, they can network, and they have a good command of the English language.

Make sure to keep an eye out for top talent online by doing the following;

  • Set up alerts for key words and phrases mentioned in social posts. These will be the terms that related to your industry, and will identify which will point you to profiles that discuss products/services like yours. You can set up these alerts with tools such as Google Alerts or
  • Send out questions and other engaging posts on your profiles to see who interacts with you. These users are most likely already following your profiles and interested in your business.
  • Tap into your current team’s social networks. Ask your top performers if they would be willing to send out some of your job openings, since it’s likely they will have fellow professionals in their circles.
  • Get on LinkedIn. Use it to scout proactively for good candidates who may match your openings, or to have people come to you. Add a note that you’re hiring in your profile so people can find your careers page with one click.

What are your tips for finding top talent online? Do you have any success stories about it? Tell us about it in the comments below.

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Public Seminar: Strategic Planning

Join us October 18 to 19 as we host a two-day workshop on Strategic Planning.

If you and the people who work with you don’t understand where the company is going, they may all develop their own priorities and actually prevent you from getting where you need to be. Part of getting everyone on board is creating a strategic plan complete with the organization’s values, vision, and mission. Then, there’s the challenge of bringing these principles to life in a meaningful way that people can relate to. This two-day course will help you describe what you want to do and get people where you want to go.

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Participants will learn how to identify the values that support their company, define vision and mission, write a mission statement, and create a SWOT analysis. We will also go over tools and techniques to create a strategic plan that directs the organization from the executive to the front line.

Learn how to to implement, evaluate, and review a strategic plan, and which tools can be most useful to your goals.

Course Outline

  • Understanding strategic planning
  • Identifying our values
  • Designing our vision
  • Writing mission statements
  • Performing a SWOT analysis
  • Setting goals
  • Assigning roles, responsibilities, and accountabilities
  • Gathering support
  • Making the change
  • Presentation options (infographics, reports, etc.)
  • Getting there successfully
  • Plenty of case studies and practice opportunities

An investment of P8,500 plus VAT includes instruction by an expert facilitator, specialized student workbook and course materials, a personalized certificate of completion, snacks and lunch.

Register Now

About the Facilitator

Dr. Maria Vida G. Caparas holds a Master’s Degree and Ph.D., Summa Cum Laude, in Psychology. She is an Accredited Trainer of the Philippine Government with invaluable experiences in Organizational Development as a Human Resource, Training and OD practitioner. She authored three books on Psychology/HR Management namely “Psychological Assessment: Theory and Practice”, “Uses of Psychological Tests”, and “Human Resource Management” and was a Trainer Delegate of DFA-Foreign Service Institute in Italy and Singapore in 1999-2000. Dr. Caparas is a recipient of various national awards and also a professor in prestigious universities.

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HR Salary Overview: How much does a HR professional make in the Philippines?

There is a great need for talented human resource teams in the Philippines. Companies are constantly struggling to find talent, despite the growing population and thousands of Filipinos entering the workforce every year.

HR professionals are responsible for making sure the company runs smoothly in the face of any adversary, such as internal conflict. They navigate complicated benefits and make sure everything is in smooty working order, so your employees can focus on their jobs.

Below we list the average salaries in the HR field in the Philippines.

According to HR Nation, a HR assistant could earn 13,400 to 15,000 a month. A HR officer earns approximately 17,000 to 18,800 a month. A HR supervisor earns around 23,200 to 25,000 a month, and a HR manager typically earns 38,000 to 50,000 a month.

HR manager, the highest position in the HR department, commands an equally high salary. According to PayScale, “A Human Resources (HR) Manager earns an average salary of PHP 481,069 per year.” These managers typically oversee the direction and strategy of the HR department in relation to the overall goals of the business.

The typical skills progression of an HR assistant to manager looks something like this;

  • Begin by doing low-level tasks such as filing, attendance monitoring, and other administrative tasks for the department. This is to learn the mechanics of how the department works on the first level.
  • Once you understand more of the system, you begin managing files, handling recruitment tasks, and administration tasks that deal more with finances (such as salary and benefits).
  • When you’ve gotten your feet wet with recruitment, you graduate to training and onboarding new employees. You deal more with high level strategy, such as goals and objectives of the company, and bring that into your work.
  • Finally, at the top level you have the authority and experience to implement new programs, policies, guidelines and procedures for the company’s talent. You oversee the direction of the department, which leads the direction of recruitment, which leads the direction of the brand.

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Public Seminar: Managing Millennials

Managing Millennials

Please join us on October 14 for a workshop on Managing Millennials. Learn about generational differences, HR aspects and more.

The program focuses on understanding of the generation that is exponentially dominating the global workforce. What motivates this increasing workforce and how to leverage its strengths and identify growth and development opportunities to be able to effectively manage this so-called Gen Y. Prepares and equips leaders with diverse approach in building a culture that will respond to the needs of the new generation.

Register Now

Course participants will learn about generational differences in the workplace, discuss the profile of Millennials in the local work environment, HR’s perspective of the Gen Y, and the transformation in workplace culture. We will also go over modern technologies and social media, as well as how they affect Millennials’ behavior and productivity at work.

The workshop will revisit management styles that respond to the emotional, psychological, and social needs of the Millennials, study work-life balance, and go over how to create a positive, people-focused work environment.

Course Outline

  • Profile of Millennials
  • Changing Times
  • HR Practitioners’ Perspective on Gen Y
  • Recruiting, Engaging and Retaining Gen Y
  • Managing Millennials
  • Work Life Balance
  • Culture Transformation
  • Better Care for and Keeping Millennials

An investment of P4,500 includes snacks and lunch, instruction by an expert facilitator, small group workshops that provide “active learning,” a specialized student workbook and a personalized certificate of completion.

Register Now

About the Facilitator

Mike Grogan is a Lean Management Expert, High Performance Leadership Coach and Keynote Speaker. Mike first got exposed to Lean Management while working with Pharmaceutical Multinational Merck/MSD. There he learned first-hand from Toyota Production System (TPS) Consultants on obtaining a deep understanding of Lean and what is required for Implementation to be successful. Since then he has helped over 100 organizations in eight countries around the world become more efficient and effective. Clients have been from multiples diverse sectors such as Banking, Mining, BPO’s, Government, Manufacturing, and Healthcare, etc. In 2013 Mike was recognized by the Global Lean Movement as the first to successfully bring Lean Management to Healthcare in East Africa. Today Mike is based in Metro Manila where he is committed to engaging more organizations across South East Asia on the world class performance that can be achieved with Lean Management. Mike has a degree in Chemical Engineering from the University College Dublin and is a certified Lean Six Sigma Black Belt. He is the founder of the BestofYou Podcast. For more information, visit

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How to handle distractions in the office

There are so many possible distractions in the office, whether it’s a rude coworker playing loud music, or construction going on in the floor above you. This article provides a few solutions to these productivity-sucking problems, to help you get work done and keep your sanity.

Use white noise

White noise is a wonderful tool for drowning out distracting sounds like construction, office chatter, any traffic outside, and the general hustle and bustle of a busy building. If you are lucky enough to have your own space, experiment with Coffitivity on your computer. If not, invest in a good pair of headphones.

Get out of the office

Go for a walk if the distractions get too overbearing, or spend a few hours working at a coffee shop instead. Observe the hours where the workplace distractions are the worst, and see what happens when you take those hours away from your usual desk. This could mean walking across the hall and borrowing the meeting room, or going down the street to a cafe with wifi. You may find that the time you spend normally fielding distractions can turn into valuable, productive hours.

Deal with the source

To avoid your workplace distraction becoming a long-term problem, it’s important to address the issue as early as possible. If it’s another coworker, have a chat with them about it over coffee. If it’s noisy construction, find out how long work will be going for, and what hours to expect noise, and you’ll be able to organize your meetings and calls schedule appropriately.

Sample distractions in the office and solutions

A co-worker constantly wants to chat

  • Use headphones to send a subtle but effective message
  • Have a chat with the co-worker and let him or her know you’d love to talk over lunch, but need full concentration to do your work

Loud distracting music in the office

  • Invest in noise-canceling headphones and play ambient noise
  • Ask if the culprit would be willing to play one of your playlists

Too many meetings that break up the work day

  • Schedule all meetings for one day of the week
  • Limit meetings to 30 minutes at most
  • Switch to virtual meetings exclusively

Outside noises, such as construction

  • Find out how long the noise will continue and shift your work hours to avoid it
  • Noise-canceling headphones

Too many stimuli around the office

  • Organize your desk into a nook, using objects around your desk to create barriers
  • If possible, move your desk to a quieter location
  • Step outside for some fresh air or to work at a nearby cafe

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Social Media Recruiting: Finding Top Talent Online

If you aren’t utilizing social media recruiting, it’s time to start. Research shows an increasing number of people turning to the Internet for job information, which means your potential top employees could be actively searching for jobs online right now.

86% of job seekers have an account on at least one of the six online social networks included with this study; Facebook, Linkedin, Google+, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest. Social job seekers are younger, more highly educated and more likely to be employed full-time. –How to Job Seekers Use Social Media? [Study]

The internet is a top resource for many of today’s job hunters: Among Americans who have looked for work in the last two years, 79% utilized online resources in their most recent job search and 34% say these online resources were the most important tool available to them. –Searching for Work in the Digital Era

Finding top talent online is difficult but rewarding. This post provides some useful social media recruiting tips to help you discover and qualify leads.

Be responsive online

Build relationships with your followers and other professionals in the industry. This will give you a direct line to your potential candidates, and it’ll allow you to interact with them and see how they treat your content. Pay attention to whether they share your blogs, the quality of their posts (grammar, spelling, and content), and how they brand themselves online.

Make it easy for them to apply

Your job candidates shouldn’t have to look to hard to find a place they can apply, even if it’s just sending a resume and having it reach the right person. Set up a dedicated careers page so you can simply link to that page in a social post. That way, if someone reaches out on social you have that URL ready to share.

If you’re actively looking for a job candidate, try adding a URL to your careers page to your social media profiles, sending out Tweets regularly (try different timezones), and allowing them to send a direct message within the social media app to apply. These things will all make it easier for your candidates to get their resumes and credentials to you.

Use hashtags

Research the hashtags that your potential job candidates search to find job openings. For example, if you’re offering a position in HR, try #HRjobs. This will take some online investigation, but the relevance and reach will be worth it.

Tap into your existing workforce

If your current team is willing to reach out to their own network, you can ask them to share your job openings and careers page on their personal social networks. Your team is in a unique position to sell the company culture, since they are a part of it. They can share their experiences with the company, how they’ve grown, and other reasons they enjoy working with your business. Just make sure they have good experiences to share before you ask them to advertise an opening.

Check out this infographic from Betterteam to learn more about social media recruiting.
Social Media Recruiting: Finding Top Talent Online

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