There are many things you’ll need to consider when hiring virtual staff. Employing overseas staff, in particular, comes with many logistical challenges you’ll have to accommodate, including:

  • How you’re going to communicate
  • Time-tracking and pay runs
  • Project management and coordination

In addition to logistical issues, there are also several cultural factors you’ll need to consider.

And that includes public holidays.

Christmas Tree Celebration at central square in el Nido on Palawan island. Philippines.

Philippines public holidays

The Philippines is one of the world’s most popular choices for outsourcing, with over half a million people working in outsourcing (as of 2016).

That many people can’t be wrong!

And just like any other country, the Philippines has its fair share of public holidays.

Let’s start with officially recognised, non-working holidays:

  • January 1 – New Year’s Day
  • April 9 – Araw ng Kagitingan (Bataan Day)
  • Varies – Maundy Thursday
  • Varies – Good Friday
  • May 1 – Labor Day
  • June 12 – Independence Day
  • Last Monday of August – National Heroes’ Day
  • November 30 – Bonifacio Day
  • December 25 – Christmas Day
  • December 30 – Rizal Day


Special Non-working Holidays

In addition to regular holidays, the Philippines also observes several Special Non-working Days.

From a “boots on the ground” perspective, there’s not much separating these from regular public holidays. The vast majority of workers will still get these days off.

The big difference isn’t in status, but in how these days are processed in payroll.

Unlike regular public holidays, non-salaried employees are not entitled to pay for these days if they did not work. Instead, these days are treated as unpaid leave.

Additionally, people who do turn up for work are paid an additional 30% holiday pay – in contrast, employees who work on regular public holidays are entitled to double their normal daily wages.

Special non-working days include:

  • Varies – Chinese New Year
  • February 25 – EDSA Revolution Anniversary
  • April 20, 2019 – Black Saturday
  • August 21 – Ninoy Aquino Day
  • Varies – All Saints’ Day
  • December 8 – Feast of the Immaculate Conception of Mary
  • December 31 – last day of the year

In addition to these special non-working days, you may also have to consider holidays and celebrations unique to the part of the Philippines your virtual assistant is based out of.


Working around public holidays

When balancing a Melbourne-based team and a Filipino one, public holidays present a tricky situation.

Obviously, you’ll want to give your virtual staff the opportunity to enjoy time with their friends and family.

However, this can also throw your cohesion for a loop.

What can you do to ensure everything goes smoothly?


Examine and agree on public holidays

The first thing you’ll want to do vis-a-vis public holidays? Determine which ones your business will observe.

That’s because while most businesses will be able to chug along fine when their virtual assistants are away for a day, not all businesses can afford the disruption.

Once you’ve determined what public holidays celebrated in the Philippines (or any other country your VA might hail from), it’s time to decide which holidays should be observed and the ones that are negotiable.


Set up procedures for public holidays

Not all Australian and Filipino public holidays will line up. Most of the time, one side or the other isn’t going to be in when public holidays come around.

In these cases, it’s crucial that you put in place a plan for what happens during public holidays.

For Australian public holidays, that means establishing a procedure should your virtual assistant in the Philippines require assistance or guidance.

And conversely, you’ll also need to come up with a way of ensuring your VA’s tasks continue even when they aren’t in for the day.

In addition to helping out with public holidays, this piece of advice is also extremely useful for situations where someone has to take a sick day!

Pay slip and calculator, pay slip for virtual staff in the Philippines

Sort out how you’re going to pay your virtual assistant in the Philippines

Since special non-working days come with unique pay requirements, any non-salaried virtual staff will need to have their pay runs calculated. As such, your bookkeeping and payroll system will need to be tweaked to accommodate.

In addition to different pay rates depending on the status of the holiday, you’ll also have to comply with local employment and payment laws, and the parts relating to holiday pay.

Figuring out what you need to do can be a nightmare. Luckily, with a virtual staffing agency on your side, you won’t need to worry about it!


Manage your virtual staff with Virtualstaff365

VirtualStaff365 doesn’t just hire virtual assistants – we provide end-to-end virtual staffing solutions, allowing you to enjoy the benefits of virtual staffing without the stress.

All you’ll need to do is pay a flat monthly fee that covers everything including:

  • Wages
  • HR functions
  • Communication and management tools
  • Holiday pay

Take away the hassle of sourcing, hiring, and retaining virtual staffs with the help of Virtualstaff365.

Discuss your outsourcing solutions requirements with us today at (03) 8842 4300 or fill in the form to get in touch.