Managing Filipino workers

Profile picture of the author DaveSmith2020 by DaveSmith2020 Posted: 09/26/2013
I just hired a full-time Filipino yesterday to do some link building for me. Working hours are 3pm to 11pm their local time.

Today, I ask for her to send the work in that she has done and she says that she only just got to the workstation (which is not at her house). The time was 6pm. I asked why and she said she had to go to her home because of the bad weather and see that her family are ok.

Also, it took her 4 minutes to reply to my "hi" on Skype.

Is this normal? Any comments?

Dave
#filipino #managing #workers

  • Profile picture of the author jplazo
    jplazo
    Sounds like you got someone with poor ethics there
  • Profile picture of the author DaveSmith2020
    DaveSmith2020
    I checked online and there is some flooding in that area. Also, she just sent me a message saying she thought we were starting again at 7pm, like on the first day. So, since it is not 7pm yet, I can understand in a way. Your thoughts?
  • Profile picture of the author MartinPlatt
    MartinPlatt
    It can be. Did you set out the rules of engagement before she started?

    Does she know that she will only get paid for results, and that being reliable is important.

    I had an experience like this in the past - lots of excuses, very little in the way of delivery. Keep and eye on the situation, and pull the pin quickly if things don't improve. Not worth the effort to keep nagging.
  • Profile picture of the author DaveSmith2020
    DaveSmith2020
    Do you still have full time Filipino workers?
  • Profile picture of the author tdanz
    tdanz
    Where did you find her? Hire someone on freelancer.com and rather not by hours but by the amount of work to be done. You need 100 links? then pay for the links not for the hours the worker wastes.
  • Profile picture of the author Paul Barber
    Paul Barber
    I have employed someone foe 2 years and you get a lot of excuses and boy do they have a lot of public holidays.

    She writes articles for us and other content writing, all of which is to a very high standard. initially all the 'excuses' and lack of productivity got to me and I thought about pulling the plug because I was not getting the numbers I was after and we originally agreed.

    I then looked at it differently. What was each article costing me and was it value for money, (even accepting that it was not what was originally agreed) and it was.

    Since then she has done some cracking work, but still needs chasing to keep her on her toes. I go for daily reports emailed to me.

    Watch out for the 100% Christmas bonus in December, which I understand is a legal requirement! (I have contracted round it)

    Let me know if I can help further.

    Cheers

    Paul
  • Profile picture of the author Moneymaker2012
    Moneymaker2012
    You can pay her as per her performance instead, this way she would herself take care of timing and work.
    where did you find her?
  • Profile picture of the author JessZ07
    JessZ07
    They do have terrible rain falls and power outages quite often, I would try and be understanding of that.

    You could try asking for a start of day and end of day email to give you a quick few points on what he/she plans to do and what he/she has done. Just like working with anyone, this helps people feel accountable for their work.

    Be flexible with work time and set defined expectations with regular skype chats (once per week would be my suggestion).

    On another note .... "took 4 minutes to reply to my Skype message" is probably a good thing if the skype conversation wasnt planned .. I know I'm not overly productive when I have messages popping up all the time. I generally ignore them until I'm finished the task I'm working on.

    Hope that helps. Just my opinion!
  • Profile picture of the author natebunger
    natebunger
    I agree with the rest that pay her per performance and not the time. The weather there is really not good I've seen on the news. Power outage and lost of internet connection are very common there so you'll have to be flexible on that but be sure to communicate with her well. Be clear on your terms and what you expect from her. Just observe for some time and see if she delivers well or not. If she's more on excuses than work, then I think you should hire someone else.
  • Profile picture of the author Stefan Shields
    Stefan Shields
    Originally Posted by DaveSmith2020 View Post
    I just hired a full-time Filipino yesterday to do some link building for me. Working hours are 3pm to 11pm their local time.

    Today, I ask for her to send the work in that she has done and she says that she only just got to the workstation (which is not at her house). The time was 6pm. I asked why and she said she had to go to her home because of the bad weather and see that her family are ok.

    Also, it took her 4 minutes to reply to my "hi" on Skype.

    Is this normal? Any comments?

    Dave
    They do regularly have bad weather over there and hundreds if not thousands of people die every year from extreme weather.

    Don't be surprised when this happens because chances are it will happen a lot.

    Also they have significantly slower broadband than we do in the west so the 4 minute delay on skype is probably normal.

    you have to expect problems like this if you are hiring people from the Philippines.
  • Profile picture of the author DoubleOhDave
    DoubleOhDave
    I tried outsourcing to the Philippines but when 8 responders in a row told me they couldn't understand the simple cut and paste work I was looking for, even after me recording a video to show exactly what to copy and where to paste it, I gave up in the end. It was nothing but a waste of my time
  • Profile picture of the author digitalsapien
    digitalsapien
    Originally Posted by Stefan Shields View Post
    They do regularly have bad weather over there and hundreds if not thousands of people die every year from extreme weather.

    Don't be surprised when this happens because chances are it will happen a lot.

    Also they have significantly slower broadband than we do in the west so the 4 minute delay on skype is probably normal.

    you have to expect problems like this if you are hiring people from the Philippines.
    This is so true. Bad weather in some parts of the Philippines is very normal. Also their broadband is slower.

    I have a Filipino assistant and I think he's doing great. I am working with him since March 2012. Just be sure to check their background first and previous works. Good luck!
  • Profile picture of the author Jean Clemens
    Jean Clemens
    Personally I would never hire a full-time or part-time Filipino or cheap outsourced worker from any other country. Always hire them on pay-per-result with bonusses.

    So as an example, I would say to my outsourced Filipino; Please do 100 links according to my instructions. I pay you $XX for this, and if you do them within 7 days I give you a bonus of X%.
  • Profile picture of the author teresarothaar
    teresarothaar
    I agree that it's better to pay for completed tasks as opposed to by the hour...regardless of where your employee hails from. I'm in the U.S., and I far prefer being paid by completed task. I'm a copywriter, and it's very difficult to quantify writing work by the hour. When I was a transcriptionist, I likewise got paid by the task, in that case x cents per character (that was another job that would have been difficult to quantify by the hour).

    Someone in another thread mentioned that one of the drawbacks of hiring workers located in developing countries is that Internet outages are common. You have to remember that they don't have the infrastructure we do here, and bad weather can muck things up there more quickly than in the U.S. Hell, look what happened to the Jersey Shore and parts of NYC last year, despite our infrastructure. There were people who didn't have power--let alone Internet access--for weeks.
  • Profile picture of the author DaveSmith2020
    DaveSmith2020
    List of things gone wrong:

    * No report on first day
    * No report on second day, despite asking again
    * No updated Word document sent despite asking
    * Was not at PC at 3pm on second day
    * No message on third day to say you are at your PC when she arrives, despite asking for her to do this.

    She said she thought she was starting at 7pm on second day, although I don't really believe this.

    Is this normal or typical of a Filipino candidate?
  • Profile picture of the author techservice
    techservice
    If you pay peanuts you get monkeys. If your too poor to pay someone a decent wage to do a decent job then do it yourself.
  • Profile picture of the author PerformanceMan
    PerformanceMan
    Originally Posted by Big Energy View Post
    If you pay peanuts you get monkeys. If your too poor to pay someone a decent wage to do a decent job then do it yourself.
    Yep Quit looking for miracles...
  • Profile picture of the author DaveSmith2020
    DaveSmith2020
    Originally Posted by Big Energy View Post
    If you pay peanuts you get monkeys. If your too poor to pay someone a decent wage to do a decent job then do it yourself.
    Don't really get that. No one knows what I am paying them.
  • Profile picture of the author Brady Partridge
    Brady Partridge
    Why would you specifically hire a Filipino to write content for you, anyway, unless you wanted it dirt cheap?

    Actually, I shouldn't complain. If they're writing content for you, they can't be calling me on the phone, claiming they're from Microsoft and that my computer is infected with a virus that has to be removed per their instructions post-haste lest the earth crumble into cosmic dust.
  • Profile picture of the author teresarothaar
    teresarothaar
    We all know the going rates for Filipino VA's: between $350-$500/month, which works out to $2.88/hour or less over a 40-hour week.

    As Brady pointed out, there is no reason to hire an offshore VA other than to pay very low rates. (Another reason would be if you needed content written in the VA's native language, but I don't think that's the case here.)

    Nobody hires an offshore VA and pays U.S. wages; that defeats the entire purpose of offshoring the work.

    If you need someone to be available during specific hours, you need to hire someone who is in your time zone or within a couple of hours of it. Additionally, as has been pointed out several times in this thread, 3rd World nations do not have the same infrastructure we have here in the U.S. I have American friends who lived in Mexico for a couple of years; they were always having problems with their Internet going out and whatnot, and when problems happened, they were fixed on "Mexican time." =) This is another factor that makes it difficult for an offshore worker to be available during certain hours; they may not have consistent Internet access.

    I agree with Big Energy. If you cannot afford to pay a U.S.-based worker U.S. wages, you might be better off doing the work yourself, or maybe getting a kid who is looking for his first job to do it.

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