Late last year, a typhoon hit Cebu, which affected several of my OFS, mostly our developers. One of the OFS who was affected is Mark, who works as a web designer and front-end developer for us.

Cebu is 2nd largest IT hub in the Philippines. A lot of people move there to gain experience working for tech and start-up companies. Many of these companies set up shop there because of the availability of talent and low cost compared to Manila.  If you’re looking for technical workers, you’ll find a lot of people who have either lived, studied, or worked in Cebu.

I wanted to check in on him to see how he’s doing. I figured this is also a great opportunity to introduce you to other people who work in a team and a different perspective on how I hire technical people.

From Mark:

Hi! I’m Mark! I am a Web Designer and Front-end Developer at OnlineJobs.

Originally, I am from Negros Oriental (a neighbouring island). But I now live here permanently in Cordova, Cebu and I am mostly proud of the Cebu-Cordova Link Expressway. It’s an engineering marvel and is 5-10 minutes away from where I live.

When I graduated, I moved to Cebu City to gain experience and hone my skills but that would mean that I will be away from my family. My story here in OnlineJobs began when I decided to quit my office job and tried out working from home to be with my family. After resigning, I went on and registered at OnlineJobs hoping to find my very first full-time job online. And then one day, to my surprise, I received an email from John Jonas himself that the team needs a guy with my skill set. I went ahead and grabbed the opportunity. Since then, my life at work has never been this fun.

Work day for me starts in the afternoon since I’m a night owl and I have the freedom to work any time of the day (advantage of working at home). After my afternoon snacks, I go straight to my office and cave there until my tasks are done. My time before and after work is always spent with my wife and 1 year old mini me.

I asked Mark what it was like back when he used to work in an office. His answer to that question was really funny.

To be honest, I can’t imagine myself going to work in an office again. Too much travel time because of traffic. I would rather spend that time with my family.

When I asked him how he and his family are doing, here’s what he said:

Last year, typhoon Odette affected my work badly. After Odette hit, electricity, water, gas, basic needs, etc., are scarce and hard to get by. Since electricity was forecasted to be fixed in 3 months, me and my family had to move back to our provinces (Siquijor and Negros Oriental) because they weren’t hit as bad as Cebu just so that I can resume work. Our house has minor damages as well.

When the electricity and internet was fixed here in our place, we immediately went back. Our area, today, I can say that it has fully recovered from Odette’s wreck.

It was such a relief to know that they were safe. I had faith that they’d be able to recover faster with a bit of help. So, I sent them a bit of money to help them relocate.

Now that people are free to travel again, I asked him what places he would recommend if I knew people interested in going to Cebu. Here’s what he told me:

Cebu is quite a big province and has a lot of tourist spots. But personally, I will probably show them Bantayan Island and Camotes Island.

Those two islands would be at the top of my list as they have super nice beaches and lots of activities touring around the island.

As you can see, it doesn’t take that much work to check in on your OFS. It’s one of those little things that keep them motivated and keeps you connected with your team.

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