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HR challenges in Philippines: the Role of HR vs a Roll of Lumpia
HR Trends

HR challenges in Philippines: the Role of HR vs a Roll of Lumpia

Sharon Monteiro
August 10, 2023

The Filipino iteration, and perhaps the most famous iteration of the spring roll, known as Lumpia, is one of the most beloved appetisers in Filipino cuisine. The delicious deep-fried dish, stuffed with a mixture of minced meat, bamboo shoots, and chopped vegetables, and rolled within a rice or flour wrapper, makes it the easiest dish to prepare; an automatically makes a part of the Filipino feast. 

The HR challenges in Philippines have nothing to do with Lumpia by a far shot. But, perhaps there is some knowledge to be gained from comparing a roll of Lumpia to the role of HR. 

The Roll of Lumpia vs The Role of HR

Lumpia was introduced to the Philippines in the pre-colonial times by the early Hokkien immigrants and traders from Fujian between 900 and 1565 AD. The name is derived from the same tongue. “Lum” means wet, moist, or soft, and “pia” means cake or pastry. Since then, they have been throughly nativized to Philippine cuisine and are found throughout the islands. 

Subsequently, the Philippine Lumpia entered various iterations of its own. Today, you can get them fresh or fried, appetizer or dessert, and containing various fillings from cuisines that were a part of Philippine’s colonial past. Today, the traditional Lumpia - long and cigar shaped - has its modern variations that come sin all shapes, tastes, and sizes. 

The role of HR in Philippines isn’t too difficult to perceive. It’s quite similar to the role of HR in businesses across countries. Just like the roll of Lumpia that is fundamentally a spring roll, so it is for the role of HR. The uniqueness of HR challenges in Philippines and the role HR plays gives the operation its own unique characteristics - kind of like how the Philippine Lumpia gives its own spin to the spring roll. 

HR challenges in Philippines I peopleHum
The State of HR in the Philippines

The major qualm with HR professionals and major pain point they complain about the most is the manual work. Manually processing internal labour disputes and managing the recruitment process  takes up a huge chunk of their working hours. Lost time that could have been used for other efforts and projects are channeled into resolving disputes and operations that require the attention of HR can be one of the HR issues and problems in the Philippines. 

But, the human resource professionals of the Philippines are inspired by their passion for HR and are happy at what they do, despite the daunting challenges. So, let’s take a closer look that the unique Lumpia that are the HR challenges in Philippines. 

HR challenges in Philippines

1. Restoring the company's identity

After the outbreak of Covid-19 many businesses were forced to shift their operations to a remote work set-up. Now, as the economy slowly reopens, HR teams will need to revamp from the top to reestablish company identity and culture after months of managing teams virtually

To reestablish the company’s DNA, it is pertinent that HR organise company-wide activities that explains the company’s next steps, such as a review of the events that have passed, current recovery measures, and the vision for the future

2. Talent development

Failure to provide opportunities for advancement can have an immediate impact on employee retention. Because today's employees are more likely to experience emotional stress than previous generations, human resource teams must place a greater emphasis on efforts to keep employees engaged.

Providing training and development programs for employees can lead to increase in employees who are satisfied and engaged with their work. It is critical that human resource professionals in the Philippines recognise the importance of nurturing employees by investing in their professional growth and development.

3. Getting around limitations and HR challenges in Philippines

With the containment of the Omicron variant and the ramping up of the vaccination program, the Philippines was able to revert to Alert Level 2 in the National Capital Region and other economic centres from February 2022. This allowed more Filipinos to join the labour force. “We aim to shift the entire country to Alert Level 1 to enable even more Filipinos to find work,” said Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Karl Chua.

Moving forward with this new normal entails learning about new government regulations for ongoing health and safety precautions. The HR team will need to assess the impact of the guidelines on business operations and anticipate employee actions.

4. Putting data-driven strategies into action for operational ease and employee wellbeing

In an increasingly hybrid workplace, organizations will continue to face challenges in their operational and management models.

Employee data collection and analytics must be stepped up. Only a few large employers in the Philippines use technology to monitor their employees - virtual clocking in and out, tracking work computer usage, or productivity tracking. Companies must rethink their management style, provide opportunities for upskilling and cross-skilling, and maintain employee wellness to boost productivity and performance.

5. Providing a positive employee experience

HR efficiency is now being measured not only quantitatively but also qualitatively as it evolves and adapts to the changing needs of businesses. While it is expected to contribute to business growth (both quantitative and external), the HR team must also work continuously to promote employee collaboration and growth (qualitative and internal). 

It must move away from the mundane, day-to-day processes and toward assisting employees in finding fulfilment in their work.

Concluding Thoughts

Most HR teams in the Philippines are very small, typically with less than five HR specialists per company. Other major companies with established teams compose of 6 to 20 or more HR specialists. You would think that the bigger the company, the larger the budget to support HR team growth, right? However, this reality is that many HR professionals in Philippines feel that they cannot support their own growth because of relatively small funding. 

These HR challenges in Philippines might as well be the recipe to create a unique HR Lumpia, but these flavours can only be elevated when HR has the right solution to tackle these issues. With the right HR tools, this is possible. To remain competitive and efficient, businesses' HR departments must evolve alongside them, discarding obsolete processes and adopting new methods and tools to move away from their HR issues and problems in the Philippines.

Also read : Top 6 HRIS in The Philippines in 2023.

The platform to choose 

The ingredients of Lumpia aren’t hard on the wallet and the combination of the variety of flavours makes it perfect. It’s not exclusive to a select few, it’s Lumpia and it’s mainstream. It’s delicious while being an icon of everything that everyone will like. 

The peopleHum HR software, like Lumpia, is not too expensive, is exquisite, mainstream, is always there for your people, and it’s end to end. It is a satisfying meal and it provides for everything that you would need to create an organizational masterpiece.

Try it today and fall in love with its operational functionality, just as you did with Lumpia. 

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