I have often been asked about what should be done when a staffer you have personally recruited directly from her province at your own expense decides after three months that they want to leave to work for another employer. What happens then? Who pays for all the funds already spent just bringing her to Manila?
Even though I am also wary about the turnover of certain domestic staffer agencies, there are a few things to consider before you decide on hiring directly from the province. Should you face that situation where your directly-hired staff leaves prematurely, you have no recourse with regard to a candidate for replacement, unlike with an agency. In addition, the screening of the staffer is done only after she arrives in Manila so you never really know if she will meet your approval until she gets here. Although there are obvious advantages to hiring directly, be aware of the abovementioned issues.
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Once you actually go the way of direct-hire, you may want to put certain measures in place:
1. Probationary period
One option would be to clarify things with your staffer from the beginning. Set up a probationary period - 6 months? 1 year? - wherein the staffer understands that she must pay her transportation expense in full should she leave within this duration. However, should she stay beyond the stipulated period, you will absorb the expenses extended to get her here. The period of time by which you feel you would have gotten a decent “return on your investment” is completely dictated upon by you.