Friday, August 26, 2011

10 Reasons Why Filipinos Still Want to Work Abroad

Why do so many want to work overseas despite the thousands of job opportunities in the Philippines? Below are ten reasons why Pinoys are still aching to fly off to greener pastures, collected from different sources and surveys in the past 5 years.

1. Pinoys love to travel
Now  honestly, who wouldn't? In a recent study, a whopping 47% of the participants wanted to go abroad "Just to travel". This goes to show that we do have the adventurous spirit in our blood. Seeing the world with our own eyes, and taking pictures of our misadventures, and then showing them off to our friends.

If only you could work while travelling. Oh wait, you now can. There are thousands of opportunities to work NOT in an office area, but at the safety and comfort of your own home, or someone else's home. Or someone else's couch. :)

2. To become successful
There's a social stigma about being able to work abroad means that you are already a successful person. Mostly that is true. When established doctors and lawyers are taking up a new course that would help them work overseas, you know that there's definitely something to it than just being an OFW. Working in "financially powerful" countries gives the image that you are one of them.

Now here comes the serious part.

3. Better salaries
With Pinoys, there's always the mentality of "the grass is always greener on the other side". It does not mean we are greedy sombishes, but we always want to look for ways to improve our lives, as well as the lives of our family. Sadly, the money that an average worker here is extremely low compared to the amount their OFW counterparts are making. If a skilled construction worker in the Philippines can find ways to legally work abroad, they would be earning ten to fifteen times more, not insurance and benefits.

4. Poor benefits in the country
Health insurance and benefits are hard to get by, of course you need to spend money to get insured. Money that most of us don't already have. If you're self employed, this is difficult compared to having a company who does the processing and applications for you. The sad thing is a lot of employers don't offer health insurance or accident insurance to their workers, as these are not a requirement.

5. Unstable economy
A lot of people frown upon the government lately. Filipinos now lack the confidence in their political leaders with all the corruption, scams, scandals and hullabaloo that is happening all over the news. We just can't see them providing a stable future for us. To those who are, however, content with how the country is being run, and with the finger-pointing that happens on a daily basis over at the palace, well.. I don't know how you manage to do that at all.

6. Unemployment rate is like the lottery
And that's not a good thing. According to the latest survey done by the Social Weather Stations (SWS), there are over 11.3 million unemployed people in the country as of March 2011. That number looks like the jackpot prize from the lottery, which was coined by a well-known personality in the business section as the "dumb man's tax".

According to the SWS, this staggering result is mainly due to the multitudes of students taking on a profession which was deemed popular but is actually on a decline. This false marketing is beneficial for schools and employers, but not so much for the ordinary Juan.

7. Jobs don't last long here
This is true for most employees of contact centers, malls, restaurants and other establishments who decide not to keep people for too long. Because after all, pay increases are bad for employers, so they cut their people short to hire new batches of fresh employees who won't last as long as they hope to.

There's also the famous line, "We can afford to let you go, there will be more people who want your job." I'm glad I haven't tried being on the bad end of that conversation, but I can just imagine what it must be like. Sadly this is a very common mentality among most, if not all employers, regardless the department or field.

8. It's hard to get a job if you're not the Philippines' Next Top Model

It is a known fact, that A LOT of employers in the country prefer aesthetically enhanced individuals and half-breeds over true blue Pinoys. Look around you. Take a stroll outside the cave you live in, and notice that most of the people with the high-paying jobs in the country are somewhat in need of some sunburn.

Employers also prefer graduates of "top schools". The notion behind this is obviously that these said "top schools" provide better education, and therefore give out more competent individuals. The illusion of "not so top schools" = not so competent individuals is then created. A bit harder for the people who can't afford these said "top schools" to get good jobs. They either have to be super talented by their own efforts, or know how to kiss so much ass you're practically sleeping with your bosses to get promoted.

9. OFW'ss are living the big life
Do you know people who work abroad as nurses, caregivers, chefs, construction workers, etc? Have you seen their Facebook pictures lately? I don't even have to explain much on this one.

An unfortunate fact, however,  is that a lot of OFW's are practically begging to come back to the country for fear of their safety. This is very rampant especially when turmoil is happening left and right. What's sad is that although there's the image of OFW's making it big, a whole lot of them are actually having a hard time, and their side of the story isn't what's being talked about when it comes to working abroad.

10. Everyone's doing it
Why not go work abroad? Everyone's doing it now. You're not the only one who dreams of becoming rich and living in the greener side of the hill. There are lots of Pinoys there already, you won't be lonely. It's going to be so much fun. We're going to be working together. And earn paper together. And buy luxury cars together. And buy iPhone 5s together. And give our kids smartphones for their first birthday. And come back home to build mansions for our loving parents. It's going to be great.

How about you? Are you one of the many Filipinos who want to work overseas? What are your reasons? Feel free to leave a comment below. Oh and please share this post by clicking on the buttons to the left. You could also avail of our free Newsletter by signing up here.


Matt said...

Living the big life??

Most OFWs are over burdened with family members leeching off them for kids education and 101 other things. If anything most OFWs are the most abused people in Filipino society

sagoy said...

Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment Matt. You have a good point there, I should have written more on that. A lot of OFWs are, in fact, abused by their employers abroad. And I can't believe I forgot about family members leeching off, because I actually know someone with that experience. You hear it a lot in the news that many OFWs are practically begging the President and the Government to step in, and take them back to their homeland because of fear for their safety and welfare.


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