HUSBAND. FATHER. DISCIPLE OF JESUS CHRIST.
ENTREPRENEUR. MEDIOCRE GOLFER.

I’m John Jonas. I live in Utah and I founded OnlineJobs.ph. My life is better because of my Filipino VAs.

I had a normal “job” for 8 months after college and my biggest goal at that time was to be able to quit that job. I managed to quit back in 2004 and worked from home for myself ever since then.

When I first hired someone from the Philippines in January of 2006, I knew I was onto something special. Since then I’ve learned that for most people, life is definitely better with Filipino workers on your team.

Yes, because of my Filipino workers I get to play a lot of golf, spend a lot of time with my wife and kids, and get out backpacking in the middle of the week. I work for about 17 hours a week because of the amazing work they do. However it’s not just better for us; it’s better for them too.

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P.S.
I DON’T DO SOCIAL MEDIA…
MY VA’S DO IT FOR ME.

} My Latest Post

Reimbursing Your OFS PhilHealth And SSS Payments

What I’m about to say is totally optional for you.

But it’s also really good.

I give my workers at Onlinejobs.ph additional pay for insurance premiums. I pay for their PhilHealth, health insurance, and SSS.

Because I don’t have a business entity in the Philippines, I can’t pay for these benefits directly. I reimburse after they’ve made their payments.

How do I know if they really paid for these benefits? Specifically for PhilHealth and SSS. Do they just tell me they’ve paid for it, and I just send them the money?

Of course not.

We reimburse them after they send in their receipts.

As I mentioned, Filipinos are mostly honest and will be glad you’re paying for these premiums. They’ll be happy to get those receipts to you.

If they send bogus receipts for those and ask you for the money, they are cheating themselves more. By not paying the premiums, they’ll miss out on the protection and benefits of government-mandated insurance.

You can also ask for their transaction records if they didn’t keep the receipts. Filipinos can access their Philhealth (https://memberinquiry.philhealth.gov.ph/member/)  and SSS (https://member.sss.gov.ph/) transaction history through their websites. It’ll show the record of their contributions, loans, etc.

John

PS. on my ride today I broke my bike saddle. We snobby people who ride bicycles seriously don’t call it a “seat”, we call it a “saddle”. Mine is (was) all carbon. I got careless with where I leaned my bike and it fell. Carelessness…such a curse.

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My Newsletters

Why incentive and bonus structures fail with Filipino specialists

My kids laughed at me. Are you serious? "$5???" Ok, fine, you're right.  No incentive for getting your chores done. You're a part of this house and we expect you to get them done. That's how our chore conversation went.  The incentive didn't work.  The...

5 “Benefits” you might pay for your OFS

I hate the word "benefits" when it comes to work related additions. In the US, most "benefits" serve to tie someone down to a job they don't like.   "I can't quit and start out on my own, what about benefits"? But, from an employers perspective??? Employee...

Health insurance for your online Filipino specialists???

2 of my kids had their tonsils out a few weeks ago: It was a painful 9 days.   Lots of popsicles, crying, water, tylenol, ibuprofen, sleep... When the total bill came for the surgery, it was $500 each.  I was surprised at how affordable it was.  Of...

How Basecamp helps me avoid micromanaging my Filipino specialists

I'm all about systems.  It means I don't have to think about something. It means something happens without me.  I've found in my life that if I have to think about something over and over again it clutters my brain so I'm not efficient at solving bigger...

Contracts, Taxes, and “Employee” status and the Philippines

"Dad...when are we going to start paying taxes on this?" My son is super intense. He's been running businesses since he was 11. Some made money, some didn't.   But the one he has stuck with the longest did about $300k in sales this past year (he just turned...

Covid and internet problems in the Philippines

Internet problems at my house entail conversions like"Ugh...what's wrong with the wifi?  It's so slow!""Dad, your wifi sucks!" <-- teenage kids"John, come fix my computer." <-- my amazing wife During COVID, it's especially crappy because these...

How to easily train your OFS

A lot of mornings I do this with my 3rd grade daughter while she's getting ready for school. "What's 4x8?""What's 7x8?""2x8?""9x8?" I'll just repeat over and over to help her memorize. Math is a lot about patterns.  The more you recognize the patterns, the easier...

Ideas for collaborating with your OFS

On the drive up to ski in the backcountry the other day my son and I talked through our plans. What should we do if conditions are like "this"?What about if "this" happens"?Here's the research I did about the snowpack in this area.What do you think about this route?...

Look for an OFS, NOT a “VA” when hiring

The term VA or Virtual Assistant has bugged me for a long time. You're not hiring an "assistant". They're not a nebulous "do anything but don't be particularly good at anything" person. Yes, I've hired a couple of those over the years. Actually, the first person...

Dealing with power/internet outages in the Philippines

We skied in Little Cottonwood Canyon the other day.  It was amazing.  15" of new snow, a storm, backcountry, being out with my son...all the ingredients for an adventure. The unexpected piece of the adventure was the traffic. Oh sure, traffic is super common...

There’s no “divorce” in the Philippines

With Valentines coming up, how about a little "love" knowledge. My VA wrote this piece about "The Bachelor", but what stuck out to me is that there's no divorce in the Philippines. Maybe this is why they're so darn loyal.  Why...if you treat them well, they'll...

When your VA gets sick…

My family and I are pretty healthy.   We eat really well.We exercise a lot.We sleep 8+ hours/night.We have low stress. Generally, we're pretty darn healthy.  That doesn't mean we don't have our problems.  - 2 of my kids just had their tonsils out.-...

Filipino workers are non-confrontational. What it means for you.

Yesterday I went sledding with my older kids.   No, not your normal sledding.  We call this "adult sledding".orSled racing. We hike up a canyon 1-2 miles, then we sled back down the single-track 1-2 miles. It's a 1-2 mile long luge where we race each...

Chinese New Year…and the Philippines???

The first time it happened I had no idea why. My Filipino worker didn't show up on a random Friday. Weird... Later I learned it was Chinese New Year. Still weird... The next year it happened again. hmmm...ok??? Turns out, Chinese New Year is kind of a big deal in the...

How to talk about money with your Filipino specialist

When eating out there are always 2 awkward moments for me:1. When the server asks "Will these be separate checks or together"?2. When they bring the bill and both of you reach for it. It's weird.   Money across relationships is weird. Filipinos feel the same....

How To Part Ways With A Filipino Worker

We climbed up into a whiteout today.  It was too cold and windy to take a pic.  The day started out nice at the trailhead. I even recorded a 10 minute long video about how to effectively manage a team of workers in the Philippines (coming soon). 3.5...

When Things Don’t Go As Planned With Your Filipino VA

The plan yesterday was for my wife and I to ski in the backcountry in the morning. Then my 18yr old son was going to bring all the kids up to Alta in the afternoon and we would ski in the resort until it closed. Plans went wrong. In the parking lot before heading...

Why You Should Foster Open Communication With Filipino Workers

Communication is critical in skiing in the backcountry. Talking through the current avalanche situation, talking about terrain, and slopes are a constant part of what we do.Each partner needs to know what's going on at all times both to avoid an avalanche and in...

Filipino Virtual Assistants Salary Guide

Do you ever think about buying something but you're not sure what it costs so it makes you hesitate?  I don't like feeling embarrassed or ripped off, so the combination sometimes makes me not go into a store. If I don't trust them I don't know if I'm going to get...

Tips For Hiring A Web Developer “VA”

Most people running a business want help with their website.   - Maybe you're running Shopify and you want help with it.- Maybe you're building wordpress sites for clients and need someone to manage plugins.- Maybe you're an insurance agent and want your site to...

How To Run A Business And Not Have A Job

Growing up I had 2 male role models: My dad and my uncle. We were poor. My dad worked hard, but we were poor. He always had a good stable job, and then at night either he went to law school or after graduating, he did legal work to try and make ends meet. I love...

What To Tell Your Friends About Your VAs

First, let me start with what NOT to tell your friends. Don't tell them the name of your VA. People are lazy. Nobody wants to do the work of recruiting a VA.If you go raving about your VA to your friends and then you tell them the name of your VA, they're going to go...

Giving Bonuses And Gifts To Your VAs

I've only been to the Philippines once.  ONCE! It was in 2010. I took my family there on vacation. We sat on a beach on the island of Boracay for 5 weeks.  It was amazing.   (they're so little! They're 15, 18, and 13 now!) I'll tell more about the trip...

How To Appreciate Your VAs

Look, this is basic management advice... ...but it's ESPECIALLY IMPORTANT in the Philippines. Your VAs want to be appreciated. They want to know that you're happy with their work.They want to make you happy.They want to feel useful. If they don't, they're not...

Philippines Food – *Warning* Hold Your Stomach!

*WARNING* - I don't have a weak stomach...but what my VA wrote made me queezy.  Unaltered from my VA:-----------You're eating balut wrong (or the wrong balut) Nothing grosses out the rest of the world like the Filipino delicacy 'balut' or fertilized duck egg. The...

How I Think Through Automating A Process With A VA

One of my college roommates and I saw things differently. Me: I think I can run my own business and make my own schedule and work a lot less. Him: "Don't you know small business owners work more than anyone else!" Haha...who's laughing now! This roommate grew up...

I Got 100 Job Applications, What Do I Do?

I got bit by the dreaded "red snake" yesterday. I took my family up skiing.  (good lookin' if I do say so myself) We were supposed to get like 1 inch of snow but we ended up getting 3!  It was amazing... ...until we drove home. There was a red snake of tail...

How Do I Get A VA To Work Faster?

I've had it happen to me. You hire a new VA. They start out great. Great work.Fast turn-around times.High quality. Then something happens and everything slows down. Quality declines. You know you hired a good person...you went through the process...

Why You Should NOT Do A Phone Call With A Potential VA

The first thing most people want to do when they get a bunch of applicants to their job post is schedule Skype interviews. Don't do it. Here's my experience (and thousands of other people's experience). You have 10 applicants.You ask them to schedule a Skype call.5 of...

Create Processes With The Intention Of Delegating

We treat Sundays different than any other day of the week.For us, it's a day of rest.  A day of worship. A day where we do different things than we do most days of the week.This Sunday we played a bunch of games together, had a Sunday School lesson, and had...

What Type Of VA Should You Hire First?

As I climbed the mountain with my kids on Wild Wednesday my mind went back to the podcast interview I did the day before. The host:"So John, my biggest question is what kind of VA should I hire first?  Like, who should I be looking for so I have the biggest...

My “Fake Vacation Photos”

As I did yoga this morning I was concentrating on my breathing.  In...Out...In...Out... Downward Dog In...Out...In...Out... I needed the breathing to get the "fake vacations" out of my head. Fake vacations? Yesterday someone replied to my newsletter and...

When Are You Ready To Hire A VA?

I have a neighbor who just bought a mountain bike.   He calls me and says "Hey, we need to go riding!  I got a bike!" I'm like, No...we can't ride right now, the trails are all snowed over or muddy. He bought it. But that's not the real reason why I...

Why The Philippines Has A Lot Of Holidays

The following was written by one of my VAs. She wrote it in first person as if it were me.  As if I had all this knowledge about why the Philippines has tons of holidays.   I don't. But there are 2 takeaways here:1. they have a lot of holidays....

Well…That Was Crazy (USA Politics)

It was "Wild Wednesday" for us (the day my kids are off school so we do something crazy outside). While climbing a mountain in the backcountry skiing with my older kids, I was filming a video about "What type of VA you should hire first". Then the notifications...

Help With New Years Resolutions

It's Monday afternoon as I write this and I'm sure gyms across the world were packed this morning with people who've decided to get in shape as their "New Years Resolution". I spent the day in the mountains backcountry skiing with my wife. It's not part of any...

Setting Correct Expectation With Your VAs

Since my kids are off school on Wednesdays because of Covid, we've decided that together we're going to do big things on that day every week. We're calling it "Wild Wednesdays". I've been talking it up for weeks now building their expectations. We'll have a mountain...

My VAs Do 100% Of My Social Media

My brother texted me yesterday and said  "Are you in Vegas?" No. Am I supposed to be? "No. Just saw your Instagram post" What post? hahaha. I don't make my instagram posts. I send pics to my VAs and they post it some time in the future. I was in Vegas like a...

Wax Your Skis, Sharpen The Saw

This morning I waxed my kids skis for the first time ever. It's not that they haven't needed a wax, it's that I'm lazy with things like this. Taking skis to the shop, dropping them off, waiting 4 days to get them back, going to pick them up.  For someone who...

Filipino Godparents

From my VA, Julia. --------Being a godparent is an honor and a serious responsibility. It shows that the parents trust you. And once you become a godparent, you're part of that child's life forever. It's the same In the Philippines and they have a special name for...

How VAs Create Focus In Your Business

On Christmas day I went for an afternoon bike ride.  I hadn't been on my bike since my big crash a few weeks ago.  We've been skiing instead.   Skiing is my favorite.  The mountains.The snow.The clean air.The time with people I love.The flow. It's...

Can A Filipino VA Work On My Timezone?

Let's go!Come on, we're ready.Everyone's waiting in the car for you. It's not super common...but it definitely happens in my house.  Probably in yours too. We're getting ready to leave and someone (usually the wife or the slow daughter) is WAY behind everyone...

What’s A “Filipinism”

My 2 youngest had their first ski day of the year last week.Actually, they had their first 3 days of the year last week... Oh, they love to complain about skiing.   I don't want to go!Nooooo!I want to play with my friends! AWESOME!  YOU'RE GOING! Is it just...

How Does Santa Do It? ELFs!

People always wonder how Santa gets around to millions of houses all in one night.  I have a secret... He uses ELFs Efficient!  Loyal!  Filipinos! How do I know?   He just used my One VA Away program to hire another ELF. It's amazing how efficient...

Christmas Traditions

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How To Handle Christmas And New Years With Filipino VAs

Winter is in full swing here right now. "And mom and dad can hardly wait for school to start again" isn't exactly how I feel.  Yesterday we had an amazing day skiing together.  I love having my kids home for Christmas break...but only because my VAs are so...

No Christmas Trees In The Philippines?

The Philippines is interesting when looking at it from a western, outsider perspective. They have a lot of asian culture which is different than a lot of western culture.  BUT...they have so much western culture that they make amazing employees. The combination...

“Business! Mankind Was My Business”

“Business! Mankind was my business; charity, mercy, forbearance, and benevolence, were, all, my business. The deals of my trade were but a drop of water in the comprehensive ocean of my business!” Jacob Marley yells this at Ebenezer Scrooge in the play "A Christmas...

Christmas Midnight Masses In The Philippines

I'm a religious person.  I go to church every week.  I read my scriptures every day. I say morning and night prayers.  But when I asked one of my VAs about Christmas traditions I didn't expect to hear about midnight mass for 9 days in a row! Here's what...

It’s The Season Of Giving…And I Want To Give

I try to make a difference in the community where I live.   It's not always easy, but when something hits you in the face you help out. The other day I went to meet with the local coordinator of Venezuelan refugees.  I sat in her house talking with her and...

I love reading your emails! Thank you for creating OnlineJobs.Ph I have a great experience with the training and the VAs.
Amanda Vang

Real Estate Expert

I cannot tell you how much I appreciate these emails you send out John. Since I have been reading them, I have developed such great relationships with 2 my VA’s and soon to hire a third. So grateful that you created this!
Melody Johnson

I can’t tell you how helpful updates like these and your blog posts are for working with my OFS – THANK YOU!
Harrison Thornhill

thornhillresidential.com

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