The Perils of Finding a Job

Job ScamFor those of us who choose to go and find a job or new income, the act of finding a job should become a full-time job in itself and as such requires some skills and a lot of effort.  It can be difficult and can seem like a desperate task.  It can also be a very enjoyable challenge and there are many avenues to explore to find a new job, but we should be careful.

There are some people out there who gain their own income by preying on those looking for new opportunities.  I have come across quite a few unscrupulous organisations lately and would like to share my stories so that others may learn from these experiences and hopefully avoid potential problems.

Many unscrupulous people look for their victims on the street or through classified ads sections of magazines and newspapers.  We can call them scammers for now.  The scammers often make their money by posing as an employment agency, it may be somebody trying to entice you into their own home where perhaps your safety is called into question or it may be that they are trying to manipulate you into signing up to a pyramid selling scheme of some kind.

I will discuss some of the dangers below and how to stay safe.  If you have come across any scams please share them in the comments section at the bottom of the page.  You can post under an anonymous name but please use a real email address - it will not be displayed publicly).

At the bottom of the article I will give some ideas on how to find good job opportunities that are safe.

Bogus Employment Agencies

These scammers work in big teams and have a very good system that works very effectively.  They distribute advertisements in classified ads magazines and newspapers and also employ leaflet distributers to prowl the streets.  Once they have your attention they get you into their office and start talking about the company and how it is developing quickly and has new offices all over the place.  The office is typically run down and not complete.  They make promises of having a job vacancy that suits you perfectly and start by asking for a small fee.  This is a test.  Later, there will be another fee of increased value and the fees just keep increasing.


Buy This Product First Scams or Commission-based Sales

A lot of people will try to encourage you to join their company and pretend to be offering you a job.  When you enquire about it, they may even create a job title, salary, working hours and schedule and make all kinds of promises.  You would then be invited to a workshop with other people and receive some form of training or introduction speech about the job.  At the end, you may be asked to buy something or to register or pay for more training before you can be given the job.  This is either just a blatant scam to steal your money or it is to sign you up into a pyramid selling scheme.

Alternatively, it might be that you are offered a job as office staff but later it transpires that the only way you can make money is on commission-only sales.


Pyramid Selling

A lot of people who participate in Pyramid Selling (also referred to as Multilevel Marketing, Network marketing, Binary plan) will try to encourage you to join their scheme under the pretence of offering you a job or income opportunity.  It might be that you want to join, that's up to you.  If that is not what you are looking for, then you really do not want to waste your valuable time in workshops and in other people's offices whilst you could be out there looking for a real income opportunity.

Often these people will approach you and come across as very concerned about you and tell you that they recently discovered a secret path to financial freedom that has worked for them and that they will share with you.  They will not directly answer any questions and will try to encourage you to go to the office.  If you do go to the office, the professional sales team will work on you using proven methods to convince you to join.

Click here to read why pyramid selling lacks moral responsbility


Work From Home

You may find that the opportunity you have discovered is to work from home or to work in somebody else's home, perhaps as a house maid or private secretary.  There is a possibility that this is a 'job' that may involve sexual activities or it may be somebody who is pretending to offer a job in order to take advantage of you.  It may also be perfectly genuine and a good opportunity but put your safety first.


Follow Your Instincts

There may be times when you feel unsafe but cannot explain why.  Trust your instincts and stay safe.  Ask questions if you need to.  If a situation does not seem right, ask questions and do some background checking.  Do not worry about upsetting anybody with a few sensible questions or checks.  Any decent, honest orgnisation would be happy that you are investigating further and taking care of yourself.  Besides, your safety is far more important than the new job.  There are plenty of good opportunities out there if the new prospect is offended by your questions.

Good Job Opportunities

If you know what kinds of jobs you want to do, then you could get a list of all the companies that require that kind of staff and write letters enclosing a covering letter to each of them.  This way you can be sure that any subsequent job offers come from trustworthy companies.

Go to authorised agencies that are recommended by the Government.  You can also contact local job centres for a list of jobs that they promote and hopefully these will be trustworthy.  You can often find lists of authorised agents on government-based websites.

In some countries there are many job fairs.  You can find out where by checking the newspapers local events pages.

Job Hunting is a massive project and can occupy you full-time!  I wish you the very best of luck and stay safe!


If you have any more ideas or have had any experiences of scammers please share them in the comments section below.

Read on...

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Comments and Feedback

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#4: Sandy - at 00:05 on 13 Sep 2014

Maiden, Susan and Josephine, thank you very much for your positive comments about the article and also for adding your stories about your experiences. I hope this information can help and protect other people too.

#3: maiden.zest - at 03:31 on 12 Sep 2014

I never had an experience like this, but when I walked past by Cubao, there are too many agents who are giving a small leaflets and they encourage you that they have a job for you with a good salary. So I try to collect those, and I think I have 12 of them from different people and they are offering same job. So I wonder why they are so determined to hire you instantly, I was not interested but I just want to know if these people are from the same organisation, and they are, base on what I have collected. And they are not in Cubao only, they are in busy places in Metro Manila.
This is a good article, job seekers should always be aware, stay away from scammers.

#2: Guest #113 (Susan) - at 09:12 on 24 Aug 2014

My bad experience was for a company in Cubao, they told me I had to do an interview but there were 20 people in the interview. They said it was for a job as a secretary. They told me I had to wear office attire so I went and bought new clothes because I didn't have appropriate clothing and then after the interview they told me I had to sell a water dispenser for P3000 before I could get the job. They said it's so that I would understand a sales process better. My friends told me that if its a job as a secretary then I should not have to buy something for P3000 to get the job, right? All the people in the interview were told the same, so were there 20 jobs for secretary? The company was something like emahope or emh products. What do you think?

#1: Guest #112 (Josephine) - at 09:07 on 24 Aug 2014

I was at J4SC Manpower Services in Quezon City and they offered me a job about being a receptionist for Shangri-La. They told me to pay P50 for resume editing, even though I had my resume professionally edited already. I paid anyway. Then they needed P250 to register with the agency so I paid that too because they told me they would give me the job 100% if I registered. So I paid.

Next, they needed me to go to St Michael's Medical Centre and I had to pay P850 at the medical centre for a check up. St Michael's said that they knew J4SC and work with them a lot. The next day they told me to go to the head office building in Cubao and pay P750. When I got there, the building looked really weird and not very corporate. A guard outside asked me where I was going and told me to be careful because it's a scam. I went home and called ShangriLa hotel to check if they work with that agency. They said that they never heard of J4SC. I have not been back there since then because I can't trust them.