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Experience of training a direct hire from Philippine

  1. #1
    Biggie is offline Registered User
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    Experience of training a direct hire from Philippine

    Anyone want to share their experience of training a helper hired directly from Philippine with no work experience in HK?
    Our helper is leaving and she recommend her niece a replacement. We had a couple email exchange and a short video call. We are prepared to fly her over for interview if we can't find anyone else here.
    One of my concern is that she has not worked in HK before (only in another country for 2 yr), so we will have to teach her EVERYTHING, like how to get around, what brand of stuff to buy, what are the Chinese vege, what to do on emergencies, in addition to things like our style of cooking and child minding and hygiene.
    Anyone had success or bad experience with training someone with little or no work experience here?
    Thx.
    Posted via Mobile Device

  2. #2
    kacoak is offline Registered User
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    Any chance you can have the two of them overlap for a week or two? When I switched helper I found it very useful that our current one spent about a week teaching the new helper EVERYTHING - she even made her jot down notes. Big things like getting around, calling emergency numbers etc will be easier to teach. However, it's the little things like what vegetables we like to buy, our cooking style, our daughter's favorite pajama, etc that made the transition feels seamless and less stressful, I feel.

  3. #3
    Biggie is offline Registered User
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    Is one week enough? I'm just not very patient in teaching all the little things myself.
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  4. #4
    lesliefu is offline Registered User
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    overlapping would be a good idea - particularly if she is the niece of the helper that is leaving...she will feel more obliged to teach her well. it'd be impossible to teacher her EVERYTHING - but she should get the main gist of things as they can communicate in tagalog directly. i was in a similar situation and my helpers overlapped for a week...think 2 weeks would be better but having said that, the "aunt" might be able to introduce some friends to her niece so she can learn things that way too.

  5. #5
    Gracey is offline Registered User
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    We wanted to hire our wonderful PT, but she couldn't, as she's in the middle of a contract. She recommended a "niece" straight from the Philippines. and we were very excited, as we trust her and her family.

    It turns out that "niece" has a pretty broad definition in the Philippines. Our PT helper couldn't remember her name, even though we asked several times. She just said "you'll see on the papers." She was also unclear over details like the exact age and marital status.

    I have 17 cousins (!) and I know all their names. So I think "niece" is short-hand for any distant relative or neighbor in a poor village who needs a hand. Clearly, she didn't know this recommendation very well at all.

    We had our agency contact this niece and did two interviews, one by phone and one by Skype. She was either so nervous or so lacking in basic English that she couldn't answer questions. Then we paid for her to go on a weeklong training camp held by the agency, and the agency even came back and said she would need "alot of training."

    We were still willing to give her a chance but then we realized that she wasn't familiar with basic modern appliances, like a washing machine.

    We chatted with the very honest guy at the agency who said that -- even if we paid for her "auntie" to overlap with her a few weeks -- she'd need months to adjust. Reading a specific Western grocery list -- and being able to decipher skim milk from regular milk in a giant modern supermarket -- might be hard.

    Finally, we decided against her. We'd love to help her but, with a new baby coming, we don't have months to train someone in both English and modern life. We interviewed another amah with some HK experience and the level of English, confidence, knowledge and ability were like night and day.

    I'm not saying that nobody should hire inexperienced amahs from the Philippines. It's just a note of warning if you're a busy working couple like us.

  6. #6
    Biggie is offline Registered User
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    Thanks for sharing your experience.
    We can't find anyone here in hk. (. Perhaps our household is too much work? 1 baby 1 toddler and 1 dog ). So we might just have to give her a chance and fly her here for a few days for interview.
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  7. #7
    rani's Avatar
    rani is offline Administrator
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    I've done 2 direct hires. Our first, was recommended by another helper. I interviewed her over the phone and liked her. She was working as a domestic helper in Manila and was experienced and very bright. She picked up the job right away and was with us for 5 years.

    Before she left we hired her replacement (another helper's cousin). She had worked in the Middle East. Her English wasn't that great but there was an overlap of 3 months and I figured she would get the hang of it. She only lasted another 7 months on her own, and I had to let her go.
    Founder of GeoBaby.Com

  8. #8
    matemate is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by rani View Post
    Our first, was recommended by another helper. I interviewed her over the phone and liked her. She was working as a domestic helper in Manila and was experienced and very bright. She picked up the job right away and was with us for 5 years.
    same here. first hire from Phils direct with similar background and very good experience for us. it helps if she has some degree, can speak properly and is mature

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