Many Filipinos today are considering going from being an average employee to becoming a small-time business owner. And this could be just one great move for them. Robert Kiyosaki once said in his book entitled “Rich Dad, Poor Dad” that financial freedom can be attained through establishing a business and investing. Nevertheless, the country is undeniably booming with various business and investment opportunities. From manufacturing hand-crafted products to opening restaurants, the ideas are endless. They come up with innovative products and services that can stand even during tough economic times.
Starting a small business from home is usually the scenario here in the country. With a decent capital to get by, budding entrepreneurs are slowly climbing their way to the top through ingenious strategies. But just like any other venture, it doesn't come easy. Surely, challenges may come even if you're building your business at home. But with the right mindset and techniques, the journey towards financial freedom wouldn't be that much difficult.
A Conducive Work Environment
Regardless of what industry you're in, it is crucial to designate a workspace suited for you. There are lots of home office ideas swarming over the Net which you can take advantage of. Set aside some space in your house, preferably somewhere with minimal distractions. Moreover, investing in professional office equipment and furniture is a sound investment. Spending time in front of the computer means you need to be mindful about ergonomics. An ergonomic chair and keyboard saves you from repetitive stress injuries.
Keep a Strong Team
A home-based business isn't equivalent to a one-man show. The fact that it is business means you need experts to help you out. These are people who must be adept with aspects you are not familiar with. For instance, if you are not familiar with setting up an online presence, you may hire a web developer with an SEO and internet marketing experience. Aside from that, you may need the help of accountants, bookkeepers and even lawyers. Assess what your strengths are when it comes to running a business and focus on the parts which you are good at. Leave the rest to your competent team.
Building your company also means building its identity in the market. Part of your business plan should be impressive yet feasible marketing strategies. Branding is all about establishing your business' credibility through delivering the message of your products and/or services clearly. Create ways to connect to your clients and customers emotionally.
No matter what size, businesses should always make their customers feel valued. When you come to think of it, your company wouldn't even suffice without them. Cultivating relationships with your target audience is extremely essential during the first stage of your business. Winning their loyalty is a matter of being grateful and respectful of them, be it through exceptionally answering to their queries and attending to their concerns.
Managing and growing your small business at home is definitely possible. Starting out while keeping in mind these concepts may even give you a bigger and brighter opportunity in the corporate scene.
Anna Garcia writes for Regus PH. Regus Philippines offers excellent serviced accommodation and business solutions in three of the largest metropolitans in the country: Manila, Makati and Cebu City.
- Ranked as Visionary in recent HR Outsourcing research
- Ranked as top 3 HRO player by HRO Today
- Ranked as top 10 European technology company by Truffle 100
- Largest SAP HCM consultancy practice globally with over
2,000 experienced consultants
- Industry awards
- 2010 “Most Innovative BPO Company of the Year” by ICT
- 2009 Winner ‘HR Product of the Year’ by HR Executive
- 2009 Winner of ‘Technology relationship of the year’ with SAP
- 2008 Named ‘major outsourcer of the year’ by the Institute of
- 2010 Winner of the SAP Pinnacle Award for BPO Provider of the Year
- 2008 Winner of the SAP Pinnacle Award for Business
- 2006 Winner of the SAP Pinnacle Award for Global
- SAP certified Global BPO service provider
US Payroll Specialist
- Works as the first point of contact in the delivery centre for Client HR representative.
- Work could include calls, tickets, emails or faxes from clients requesting services, support or issue resolution.
- Serves as the first escalation level for HR Consultant.
- Resolves escalated and complex issues in one or more specific process areas which include payroll, reports, processes and controls.
- Researches and processes master data changes and executes all process steps in accordance with the client’s standard operating procedures.
- Processes payroll (on and off cycle) and post payroll reconciliation and other transactions.
- Produces and supplies regular and on-demand payroll reports and statistical information according to the agreed services (SoS).
- Ensures the quality and timely delivery of payroll services (processing and controls) according to the contract and SLA
- Advanced HR expertise – In depth knowledge of processes, policies and regulations within the area of Payroll, Benefits Administration and employment law/legislation appropriate to the clients geography
- Good analytical skills – to be able to break down a problem, situation or process into its component parts, to separate the main issues from side-issues, to understand the nature of parts and their relationship to one another
- Gathering information and problem solving – look at existing issues and interact with others to find adequate solutions
- Knowledge of the Service Centre processes, policies and procedures (e.g. escalation procedures, service level agreements, client service standards)
- Good communicator and customer oriented – to be able to identify and understand the customer's needs
- Results oriented – to be able to achieve targets aligned with business goals
- Well-organized and planned, schedules time effectively and uses efficient work methods and tools
- Detail-oriented, thorough and focused on all aspects of the job to ensure high levels of accuracy
- Teamwork – to be able to work with colleagues to achieve targets and objectives.
- Ability to work under pressure, remains calm, is objective and controlled in responding to urgent or demanding situations. Maintains effective performance against strict deadlines
- Computer skills: MS Office, SAP HR, HR IS/IT systems and SC technology (tools for documentation/tracking, service delivery channels etc.)
Last night, I was reading one of the books written by Bo Sanchez. He is one of my favorite authors because his writings are very inspiring and uplifting. The title of the book is 40 Stories of Passion – Learn from 40 ordinary people on how to make your life extraordinarily beautiful.
One of the stories that I really like in that book is about the life of Lola Nieves Verneza. She was interviewed by Bo Sanchez, and she was 81 year old at the time of interview. Let me share the things they talked about.
Bo: Nanay, tell be a bit of your roots
Nanay: I came, from a poor family in San Pedro, Laguna.
Bo: Did you always have this entrepreneurial blood in you?
Nanay: Yes! At the age of 15, I was already selling. It was the year 1943, during World War II. I sold “contraband” items that the Japanese soldiers confiscated for their use such as rice and chicken. So in deep baskets, I put the rice and the chicken under my patola and sitaw. I carried these baskets by foot, by calesa, by train and by banca to Manila. It was very difficult and dangerous. But that was the only way we could survive.
Bo: Weren’t you afraid?
Nanay: I was. Those were scary times. I had to intentionally look ugly so that the Japanese soldiers won’t pick on me. If you were pretty, you’d get confiscated too!
Bo: When did you get married?
Nanay: When I was 18 years old, I met Censio in one of my banca rides to Manila. After to talking to my parents, we got married very soon after.
Bo: What was Censio’s livelihood?
Nanay: He was a poor farmer and a fisherman. But even after the war, I continued to sell whatever I could find that I could make a profit on.
Bo: And you lived a simple life so that you could save…
Nanay: Yes. We saved every centavo. If my children asked for 90 centavos to buy something for school (and I gave them one peso), when they returned, I asked for the 10 centavo change.
Bo: What happened next?
Nanay: When we saved enough money for a down payment, we bought a jeepney. Censio learned how to drive and decided, with complete trust for better opportunity, to relocate the whole family to Paco, Manila. By grace or chance, he got an offer as a driver from the nearby school to be their official “school bus driver.” Meanwhile, I opened a tiny store in Paco Market to sell clothes. It was really a four-foot table and nothing much. But every day, I’d wake up early in the morning to work, saving for our children’s future.
Bo: And then what happened?
Nanay: Through our savings, Censio was able to buy a second-hand bus to meet the demand of more students being served. And then we bought a property loan. The owner of the land was a friend and she agreed on a pay-when-able scheme. Through our savings everyday, we paid it in two years. After that, we build apartments. To save money, my husband learned how to be an architect, engineer, contractor and foreman – even if he only finished Grade 6. And so for another two years, we built 70 apartments…
Bo: Seventy: Did you say 70 apartments?
Nanay: Yes, 70, very simple and small apartments.
Bo: How did you do it?
Nanay: Censio would borrow from the hardware construction material. We built one apartment and rented it out right away. We asked for a two- or three-month deposit from the tenant. We used that money to start building another apartment unit. We didn’t stop until we reached that many apartments.
Bo: I still can’t believe you built that many apartments! Wow! Weren’t your neighbors shocked?
Nanay: They were. They thought we got money from rich relatives. They didn’t know that through all those years, we were saving money – little by little.
Bo: Thank you for your inspiring story. At 81, now that Censio has passed away, you give most of your time to your service to God. Any last words?
Nanay: Live a simply lifestyle. . Eat vegetables and fish. Avoid stress. Don’t have too much worries. Pray. At magtipid. Mag-ipon. At lahat ng kita, itago. Ilagay sa negosyo o sa paupahan. (Be frugal. Save. Keep all your income. Put it in business or lend it to someone.)
This interview was taken from the book 40 Stories of Passion. To learn more of his inspiring books and magazines, log onto Bo Sanchez website, www.bosanchez.ph or you can email at firstname.lastname@example.org
For the Filipinos, Singapore is one of the favorite destinations to work with. It offers professional jobs mostly in the industry of business, tourism, manufacturing, construction, healthcare, IT, finance, etc.
SINGAPORE FACTS AND HOLIDAYS
If you are planning to work in Singapore, then you should have an idea about the country. Here are the following facts:
Country: Republic of Singapore
Capital City: Singapore
Language/s: English, Malay, Chinese, Tamil
Currency: Singapore Dollar (SGD)
Country Code: +65
New Year's Day 1 January 2013
Chinese New Year 10,11 February
Good Friday 29 March 2013
Labour Day 1 May 2013
Vesak Day 24 May 2013
Hari Raya Puasa 8 August 2013
National Day 9 August 2013
Hari Raya Haji 15 October 2013
Deepavali 3 November 2013
Christmas Day 25 December 2013
HOW TO WORK IN SINGAPORE
There are three important things you need to answer to increase you chance of getting hired in Singapore.
1. Is your occupation in-demand in Singapore? According to POEA, it is easy for you to find a job in Singapore if it is included in the list of in-demand jobs by the Ministry of Manpower in Singapore.
2.Do you have enough work experience? A relevant work experience is needed to be qualified for a job and to get an Employment Pass.
3. Can you work with other nationalities? Industries in Singapore are composed of diverse group of people. Also, most of the companies in Singapore are managed or controlled by foreign employers too. The working condition in Singapore is different from the Philippines.
To be able to work in Singapore, you need a work permit or a valid visas. Any Singaporeans that hire non-residents without a valid work-permit will face penalties, and the hired non-resident can be deported or put into jail.
Here are the following passes and visas: (The following information were taken from the Ministry of Manpower website)
1. Employment Pass for professional workers
The Employment Pass allows foreign professionals to work in Singapore. It applies to foreigners who earn a fixed monthly salary of at least $3,000, and have acceptable qualifications.
2. The S Pass for mid-level skilled foreigners.
The S Pass allows mid-level skilled foreigners who earn a fixed monthly salary of at least $2,000 to work in Singapore.S Pass applications are assessed on multiple criteria including salary, education qualification, skills, job type and work experience.
3. A Work Permit (WP) is generally issued to foreign unskilled workers.
The duration of a Work Permit is generally two years, subject to the validity of the worker’s passport, the Banker’s/Insurance Guarantee, and the worker’s employment period, whichever is shorter. The worker is only allowed to work for the employer and in the specified occupation
4. The Miscellaneous Work Pass
The Miscellaneous Work Pass is for foreigners working in Singapore on short-term assignments that fall into certain specific activity categories.
5. Work Permit for Performing Artistes
This work pass is for foreign artistes performing at any Public Entertainment Licensed bar, discotheque, lounge, night club, pub, hotel, private club or restaurant for a maximum of six months.
WHAT ARE THE JOB OPPORTUNITIES IN SINGAPORE?
Here are the in-demand jobs in Singapore.
WHERE TO LOOK FOR JOBS IN SINGAPORE?
To get an overseas job nowadays is not that difficult. There are many options that you can choose:
1. You can get a job by reading a newspaper.
2. You can ask your friends or relatives that are currently working in Singapore.
3. You can apply through online. Check the following websites:
ADDITIONAL INFO OF WORKING IN SINGAPORE
• It is a well known fact that many Filipinos visit Singapore. As a Filipino, you are entitled to get a free tourist visa that will not exceed 30 days. In this case, many Filipinos are taking advantage of it. Once they get into Singapore, they worked illegally without any documents. This is illegal and not advisable.
• It is much safer to look for a job through the help of recruitment agency, or, it is better that your employer will process first your work permit while you are still in the Philippines before going to Singapore.
• Foreign workers in Singapore are entitled to receive the same benefits enjoyed by the locals.
• The salary should not be less than the minimum wage set by the Ministry of Manpower.
• Foreign workers must know the Employment Act. The rights of foreign workers are clearly stated in this law.
• Foreign workers cannot be asked to work for more than 12 hours a day. In case of special circumstances, the employer needs to get a special permit to require the employee to work for more than 12 hours.
• The probationary period for new employees is from 3 months to 6 months.
• A foreign employee must notify the Ministry of Manpower if there will be a change of address, employment, salary, etc.
Philippine Embassy in Singapore
Singapore Embassy in Manila
Address: No. 505, Rizal Drive,
(Cor. 5th Avenue and Rizal Drive)
Bonifacio Global City,
1634 Taguig City,
Tel:+63 (2) 856 9922 (General Line)
+63 (2) 856 9922 Ext 110 (Consular Services)
+63 (2) 856 9922 Ext 113 (Visa Services)
Fax:+63 (2) 856 9932
Mon - Fri: 8:30am - 5:00pm
Closed on Sat and Sun, Philippine public holidays and Singapore's National Day (9 August).