As agencies have increased their fees to now Php 6,000 to Php 18,000 for every successful referral, there is a need to be more self-sufficient in finding yayas on our own.
“But I would rather wait to get a referral from someone I know,” some mommies would say. “At least they can be trusted and not steal.”
Well, many mommies end up NOT having a yaya anymore, and end up taking care of their own kids themselves.
I don’t have that option. I work full time, and I need to take care of our business. I need a yaya, and am willing to do whatever means necessary to get a yaya, including opening myself up online.
Anyway, even the best yaya agencies source their yayas online. So why not if possible save on the fees and search online as well?
Over the last month, I have interviewed at least 10 serious applicants for the yaya position, hired 3 and browsed through at least 25 applicants. I am no expert, but at the end of this adventure, I have done more interviewing of yayas than I should in a lifetime.
Here are my tips in searching for a Yaya Online.
1. Hire someone who is at between 28 to 60 years old.
If the yaya is too young: If the yaya is only 17, you would need parental consent before allowing her to come and work for you.
If she is between 18 to 21, she is only coming to you for experience and really isn’t serious about working. My sister in law’s yaya is 18, and spends a lot of her evenings talking to her partner, making her always exhausted when working the next day.
Her last newborn yaya who was still looking for love got pregnant by the houseboy. The baby is expected to come out mid this year. Maricel only stayed for 1.5 months, got pregnant, and is not at home resting as she doesn’t want to work anymore.
If the yaya is too old: They tend to be slow, forgetful and sometimes stubborn. You have to be patient and repeat your instructions in a very clear manner. If they are wrong, you can’t shout at them, but have to talk to them in a still respectful manner.
Since I am looking for a yaya to my 3-year old daughter, I need someone who can keep up with her. This means that I cannot find a yaya who is too young (who will only look at the cellphone) or too old (who cannot run around with her).
It’s the Goldilocks principle. For yayas, you cannot get them too young, or too old. They have to be just the right age.
The right age varies from employer to employer. For me, it’s 28 years old to 55 years old.
At 28 years old, they have most likely had 1-2 kids from 1-2 different fathers, so they’re less likely to have more children since the realities of taking care of a lot of kids are more real to them.
A yaya in her 30s are already more serious in finding a job for keeps since she has mouths to feed and she understands that her husband’s income is insufficient in providing for her family. She works because she loves her kids. If she doesn’t work, her family would starve.
2. Sorry, just a personal preference, but I want a yaya who is not too pretty or sexy.
This is unacceptable for us — yayas who post sexy photos on Facebook.
This means that if the yayas post photos of herself showing off her legs, boobs or tattoos, I am no longer interested in them.
We live in an area where there are a lot of construction workers, traffic enforcers and security guards, all of which try to get in our yaya’s pants whenever possible, despite being married and having kids. That’s just the way it is.
Our previous yaya was fired because she was dating the married traffic enforcer in our area while on duty. I caught her the second time having tryst with the traffic enforcer in a darkened area before firing her.
Stories of the driver or the houseboy dating and impregnating the yayas are too common in their own good.
To make it safe for everyone, I choose yayas who are not that attractive. Just my personal preference, if her photo includes of her in a spaghetti strap, she’s off my list.
Yes, this applicant was applying to be a yaya in our household. She is way too pretty to be a yaya. 🙂
3. I hire people who are actually unemployed. Meaning, they are not looking of transferring employers while still employed with the others. I don’t hire yayas who are still employed with others.
I had applicants who applied with me while still being employed with others. Their reason for switching?
- Higher salary which is understandable.
- Not liking their current employers because of (insert reason here).
- Complaining about their current work.
- The best? “I only stay here because I am merely tolerating my boss. In fact, I have wanted to switch ever since.”
- Gee… if you are like that to your current boss, then how will you be when you switch? Will you snitch on me too?
- Among other reasons…
There are cases when the complaints are valid. If you have been in a household for years and are still paid peanuts, YOU SHOULD LEAVE.
But on many cases, the complaints stem from a yaya who is unsatisfied with her lot. It is a red flag for me that this yaya has a tendency to complain despite knowing what she was getting into in the first place.
This is because salary, benefits and work conditions are usually disclosed to the yaya during interview. Before they start, a yaya should ask all questions necessary to ensure that they know what they are getting themselves in. In other words, Pinili mo yan (You chose your fate). Hence, you should barring extreme circumstances, enjoy your lot instead of endlessly complaining about it.
In my personal opinion, I prefer yayas who actually like the situation they bring themselves in. I don’t like yayas who keep on complaining about their situation especially since it was their choice to enter these situations in the first place.
A leopard never really changes her spots.
If they complain there, they will also complain once they are in my household. And I don’t want the peace in our household be destroyed because of one yaya’s discontent.
In addition, I also don’t choose these women who are still employed with others because of delicadeza. This means that just because I am in desperate need, I would pirate another person’s yaya and cause her misery in looking for a replacement.
There are still many applicants who need jobs out there. Would rather pick someone else than to harm another household because of my own dire need.
4. I hire yayas who are okay with my conditions namely:
- Rest days two days (48 hours a month) a month: I do NOT agree if the yaya wants weekly rest days. Nothing wrong with weekly rest days, but having them leave every week is a hassle and a security risk for me. Please note that I pay for the two rest days not taken, which is in accordance with the Kasambahay Law.
- No emergency rest days. We follow the schedule of two rest days per month. Anything above that is a no, except if someone died. Before hiring the yaya, I always ask them if they have their family affairs in order. I do not hire anyone who will disappear from work whenever there’s a family emergency because this means they are unreliable. I also like yayas who return on time from their rest days.
- No cash advance or bale while under my employ: This is a big one. I have had yayas who backed out after hearing this rule. Bale or cash advance is a big problem in hiring Filipinos. Because they can’t budget their money properly, they always tend to borrow money from their employers, leaving them on a continuous cycle of indebtedness. I tell my yayas I will never lend them money. If someone dies in their family, I will give her family, but save on a death, I will not help out since I pay her a lot of money and on time.
- No cellphone on duty hours: Many Filipinos cannot let go of their cellphones or Facebook. My rule indicates that they can only cellphone when my child is asleep. Many don’t like this.
- They eat when we eat: We provide three meals and more a day, but I don’t like yayas who are more particular with food than we are.
- They are okay with being an all around, which is already disclosed to in the ad. This means, I don’t like yayas who only want to take care of the kid and nothing else. Since I pay 50% more than minimum, I do want the yaya to also care about the general surroundings and do the laundry (via WASHING MACHINE) once the clothes need washing. I put this clause in because I don’t want our yaya to be maarte.
- No to padala pamasahe. With so many scammers in the Philippines, I don’t want to problematize about sending money to applicants who never plan to show up. If they want work, they will always find a way to come to you (I will reimburse the travel expense AFTER they arrive) with complete requirements.
These conditions already filter out many applicants. But since I only need one and they are joining my household, I would rather filter out those who are maarte, mareklamo and have many family issues instead of accepting them and then being disappointed later on.
5. I don’t hire yayas who don’t post their own faces on Facebook.
This is a photo of a Facebook applicant for yaya:
Lord help me if she really looks like that. She should be an actress, not a yaya.
If the yaya cannot be honest with who she is on social media, she may be hiding something, and I don’t want to consider yayas who don’t reveal anything about themselves.
6. I don’t hire yayas who frequently updates her status and post on Facebook.
If I check their Facebook page and see that the yaya is always updating on Facebook, I don’t interview her anymore.
There are yayas who update their status every day, every half a day, with selfies and post about their random thoughts. This means, their phones are always by their side and they are very busy being active on social media.
Since one of my rules is to only use the cellphone during off duty or when the baby is sleeping, I don’t think hiring someone who is always on Facebook will work for us.
7. I also don’t like it when a yaya posts photos of herself and her alaga. Or photos of her in her employer’s house.
It’s not her house or her kid. She should not post photos of what isn’t hers on social media. It’s not right, and in the Philippines, can be quite dangerous.
So when I see a yaya applicant posting her photo that features her employer’s house, child, car or belongings, I don’t even consider hiring her anymore.
8. I don’t hire yayas who have a bad record online.
I check out whether she has been blacklisted on other maids groups as a scammer or a maid with a bad record. I check her name out on Bad Maids PH Facebook group to see if she has been previously employed by someone before.
Checking online of their status have saved many employers a lot of future grief. For example, an agency referred to me a yaya who sounded decent on the phone. She was 4 years old, single, and was well experienced as a yaya.
Later, when checking online, someone gave me the feedback that not only does this yaya suffer from a bad attitude, she also had sexy photos of hers posted online!
These were her actual photos posted on Facebook for everyone to see!
My gosh, makati pala! Even I do not have the gall or strength to post a photo of myself on a swimsuit online, and here in an applicant who is open to showing on what she looks like to everyone who wishes to see.
And to those who are wondering, these are her real photos. Not Photoshopped. The agency said that these were her bikini photos from Boracay. Uhhhh….
Thank goodness for the Interet. If I didn’t ask for feedback, we would have ended up with a yaya who would give us many problems later on.
9. I hire yayas who have an acceptable record of leaving their previous employers properly.
Many yayas, like mine, leave their employer without proper notice. Many simply go on a rest day and never come back, insisting that they left their employer because of (insert yaya reason here).
It doesn’t matter if the employer was masungit or abusive. What’s important is that the yaya leaves with grace, and with proper notice.
If they left an employer without giving a proper goodbye, they would do the same to me too. And given that I had been a victim of such yaya before, I do not want to have such experience repeated again.
Hence, I listen very closely when asking the question, “Why do you leave your previous employer?”
If they give me an answer that shows they are malabong kausap, then I move on to the next interviewee.
10. I only hire yayas who show WORD OF HONOR. They have to show up on the agreed schedule. They don’t lie on the interview. In short, they do what they say.
My previous yaya told me that she didn’t even finish high school even though the yaya she was replacing was a college undergrad.
I appreciated the honesty and told her there was nothing to be embarrassed about. She turned out to be a pretty decent yaya for my daughter until she wasn’t.
I like yayas who tell you as it is. No lying, no twisting of the truth, no drama. One yaya told us that her first husband was dead, even though he wasn’t really. That was bad.
Since they are joining our household, we have to choose people who is similar like us. My husband says we like to surround our people who is not malabong kausap (which means we hate people who don’t do what they say).
Hence, we have declined the services of a yaya who keep on moving their starting date. Bago pa lang, ganun na.
This was a yaya who didn’t show up as agreed because she claimed her son was sick. It would have been more believable if she didn’t text me the day before asking me to postpone her start date since her daughter wanted her to get her report card in school.
I didn’t take her anymore.
Sure, maybe it means having a yaya starting later, but at least, weeding out those who are unreliable will keep us more sane in the long run.
Yes, it’s very hard to find a yaya in the Philippines. Even at a higher salary, I still experienced difficulty in finding a yaya myself. There is reason for agencies to exist. It’s not just to profit off employers, but to also save employers from the type of stress and frustration I’ve experienced this month.
Many employers have already given up from finding a suitable yaya for them.
The group that asks for referrals now number more than 1000 and yet, so many are left yaya-less. Many mothers choose to give up their jobs because they cannot find suitable help.
Personally, I can’t stand inactivity.
I don’t believe accepting my fate that I should be left yayaless since yaya left us last December. If I cannot find a yaya, I would have to take care of our child, and our business and my staff will suffer. Since we can afford a yaya, we should have one. Hence, not having a yaya is unacceptable for me.
So now, we have one. Zeny started just last Sunday, and she’s still alive as of today.
I hope she’s finally the yaya I am looking for. If not, we will look for someone else again.
Ahhhhh… that is life.
Anyway, hope my tips will help you find a yaya of your own. Good luck to all of us, and may the right yaya enter our employ.