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Polo to have a new contract submission system by May, says new Labatt

26 February 2020

By Vir B. Lumicao

New Labatt Mel Dizon expects the new system to be  in place by May

A new system for submitting contracts by employment agencies to the Philippine Overseas Labor Office should be ready in three months, says newly posted Labor Attache Mel Dizon.

The new system is reportedly being developed by an IT team within the Department of Labor and Employment, and is expected to be installed at Polo by the end of May.

Since Feb 2, Hong Kong agencies have been submitting employment contracts manually to Polo for processing after the old system provided by EmployEasy was discontinued 13 years since it was put in place.
The new system is one of a few administrative changes that Labatt Dizon said he is going to implement to improve the delivery of services by Polo.

He said he discussed these changes in a meeting with staff at Polo and the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration on his first day in office last Sunday, Feb 23.

He said when he left Manila on Feb 21, the development of the system had already started. The system will be the property of Dole and will eliminate third parties to avoid issues on data privacy.

It will be used only in Polo Hong Kong because of the big volume of contracts being processed at post.

“It is our own system na, Dole system, kaya nga iyon ay dini-develop. Ang usapan namin sa Manila kasi, mai-install in three months’ time. So, in the meantime, kailangang mag-manual kami,” Labatt Dizon said.
 
A queue number system is being planned to avoid overcrowding near the service counters
Despite expectations that the shift back to manual processing would slow down the process, Labatt Dizon said that so far, no complaint about delays has been received.

He said he told his staff the document processing time should not exceed 72 hours on the Polo side. That does not include authentication, which is done by the Consulate.
Evaluating staff will be given a checklist against which to check whether the documents submitted are complete or their contents are compliant with Polo requirements, he said.

“Basta anuman ang maging problema, ihahanap namin ng solusyon, Hindi namin iyan tutulugan hanggang hindi kami nakakahanap ng solusyon,” he said.

While the manual processing is still in place, Labatt Dizon said he might recruit up to four emergency local hires to beef up the Polo staff. He is now studying the salary range for the temporary staff to see if the budget that he is seeking from DOLE will be enough.
  
Another change he plans to introduce is a queue number system under which people with transactions will get a ticket as they enter the Polo public hall, instead of lining up long before the gate opens to secure a seat in front of the counters.
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