Cagayan de Oro City — A year jobless and second time to join a Job Fair, Loreta M. Obenieta was Hired-On-The-Spot (HOTS) by Phonipino Corp., a Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) company, among 58 others on 12 June 2022 during the 124th Kalayaan Job Fair at Limketkai Mall Event Center, here.
Loreta was out of work ever since she resigned from her job in one of the retail companies in the city with her eight years’ retail work experience, when the local government unit declared curfew hours as one of the safety protocols in the spread of the COVID-19 during its peak of outbreak in the city.
“Naglisud na ko ug commute pagpauli gikan sa akong panarbahuan paingon sa among balay kay layo-layo ang distansya, unya naa pa gyuy curfew, busa nag-resign nalang ko,” Loreta said.
(I found it difficult to commute from work to home due to the long distance travel and curfew hours, that was why I resigned.)
But Loreta did not let fate despair her. While unemployed, she learned new skills in the call center business when she decided for a career change when she felt stuck-up in the retail industry. She availed the call center training scholarship of Shell Foundation, one of the non-government organizations in the city. Her new skill prompted her acceptance as a Call Center Officer during the Job Fair.
Bringing her newly earned skills, Loreta was given the confidence to apply to BPO companies in the Job Fair. “I was not hired in last month’s Labor Day Job Fair, that was why I tried again my best this second time,” she said.
Loreta was elated since she financially supports her single mother who is a food vendor among her other six siblings. Loreta encouraged all the other jobseekers not to let age nor challenging circumstances especially in this COVID-19 pandemic, hinder one in upgrading and pursuing the career one desires.
From one of the official posts of the DOLE Northmin Facebook page, Loreta decided to apply among the 3,180 vacancies posted. “Taas ang linya sa Job Fair pero paspas ang processo ug na-hire dayon ko sa Phonipino na una na kumpanya na akong gi-applayan,” she said. (The queu line was long but the process was fast and was immediately hired by Phonipino as the first company I applied to.)
Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE-X) Regional Director Albert E. Gutib said the Job Fair is one of the government’s recovery efforts on employment facilitation. He said DOLE-X re-staged the face-to-face Job Fair after a two-year hiatus on 2020 and 2021 on purely virtual Job Fair, as the city sees a relaxed IATF guidelines due to the consistent decline of COVID-19 cases.
“Daghang salamat sa atong 58 employers kay tungod kaninyo mahatagan ug panarbaho ang atong affected workers and jobseekers,” Gutib said.
(Thank you so much to our 58 employers for giving opportunities to our affected workers and jobseekers.)
Gutib said that at the end of the day, 1,184 applicants were registered with 284 near hire applicants or those considered hired but still has to submit additional requirements, further interviews or tests, who availed the 2,164 local and 1,016 overseas vacancies.
Moreover, the One-Stop Desks of government services through the DOLE’S attached agencies with the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI-X) on entrepreneurship queries and Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA-X) on technical-vocational scholarships queries were provided to employers, employees and job seekers.
Gutib is grateful for the all-out support from the Local Government Unit of Cagayan de Oro City headed by Mayor Oscar S. Moreno through the Public Employment Service Office/Job Placement Bureau together with the social partners and stakeholders namely, Philippine Information Agency-X, Limketkai Mall, SM CDO Uptown, Philippine National Police, and the local quad-media.
Job Fair is an employment facilitation strategy that fast-tracks the meeting of jobseekers and employers/overseas recruitment agencies in one venue at a specific date to reduce cost, time and effort particularly on the part of the applicants. This is open to all unemployed, skilled and unskilled workers, fresh college graduates, graduates of training institutions, displaced workers and employees seeking advancement. During the Job Fair, applicants select vacancies suited to their qualifications and employers interview and hire on the spot qualified workers.
End/Mildred E. Dablio/DOLE-X